Game Preview: Smithson Valley vs Canyon

The Rangers' offense looks to mow over Canyon's defense Friday at Ranger Stadium.

Nathan Canales

The Rangers' offense looks to mow over Canyon's defense Friday at Ranger Stadium.

Jackson Posey, Staff Writer

The Rangers (0-3) will throw down against the Canyon Cougars (2-2) Friday as they attempt to pick up their first win of the season. The game will be at Ranger Stadium at 7:30, with live coverage available from Rangers Network. This is a game you’ll want to be at.

Smithson Valley has played run-oriented teams before. This isn’t their first rodeo. But even oh-so-mighty Madison doesn’t have a rushing attack as dynamic and multifaceted as the Canyon Cougars. No, they haven’t been a historically great team. But the Cougars are playing .500 football at the moment and have an unrivaled offense, averaging over 470 all-purpose yards and nearly 40 points per game.

Three different players have scored multiple touchdowns on the ground, with quarterback No. 1 Zavier Perez (2), running back No. 20 Seth Leeper-Haney (8), and running back No. 26 Nathan Culbreath (8). That’s the foundation of a deadly rushing attack, and with Leeper-Haney and Culbreath each averaging about 140 ground yards per game.

Only four players have caught a pass, but they haven’t exactly been slouches, either. Wide received No. 18 Callon Farr paces the team with 373 yards (33.9 YPC) and four touchdowns. This is an offense that can run it down your throat and throw you to pieces. You don’t stop this offense. You slow them down.

Everyone has a weakness. And as for Canyon, theirs is a gaping wound: their defense. They have allowed significantly more points (136) than the combined point totals in all three of Smithson Valley’s games (110). Quarterback Levi Williams, running backs Marc Franco and Darlington Frasch and company should wreak havoc on a defensive unit that allowed nearly twice as many points to hapless Eastview (42) than the Rangers have scored in any game (their high is 23).

Even while struggling to score up to this point, the Rangers should be favorites thanks to their lockdown defense and an offense that can at least be competent. Being even passable on that front should be enough to pull out a win. Anything less than four touchdowns on the Rangers’ part should be viewed as a disappointment.

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