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Monday Notes: Film Room Triage, Position Changes
Stopped by LSHS this afternoon and caught an hour of film with the team and coaches. However, for the second week in a row, the big news is the mounting toll of injuries.
As the bodies continue to pile up, it's almost hard to fathom that this year's squad has a pretty firm grip on the number two spot in Wesco North. By comparison, last year's team stayed relatively healthy, piled up record numbers on offense...and sputtered into a third place finish.
Let's take a look at some of the injuries the Vikings will need to overcome this week at Oak Harbor:
QB/S/WR Chameron Lackey - Lackey was on crutches and wearing a bulky walking cast. Word is that Lackey suffered a season ending MCL tear, although we have not confirmed this. Lackey is definitely out for Friday's game.
WR/K/S Arvid Isaksen - Isaksen suffered a fractured left foot and is likely done for the season. Arvid told me he hopes to play on Senior Night, but the average recovery time for this injury is four to six weeks at best.
RB/K/CB Brennan Frost - The Vikings' best all around player and biggest threat was not on campus Monday, as he was undergoing a MRI to determine the extent of damage he sustained in a knee injury last Friday. His status is undetermined.
LB/G Alex Moon - Moon suffered a knee injury Friday, but as of now it appears he may be able to go Friday.
OT/DE Garek Stuart - Just about the only good news on the injury front is that Stuart was able to run on his injured knee today and is preparing to play Friday. This is more than just an injury - Stuart tore both his MCL and ACL. If he does indeed play Friday, it will be miraculous. I believe he will.
With the above players either out or in question, let's briefly cover some of the shuffling the Viking coaching staff will likely have to do in order to cover the losses.
- WRs Isaksen and Lackey lead the team in touchdowns and receptions, respectively, so sophomore WRs Quincy Carroll and Christian Gasca have big shoes to fill. Carroll has been Arvid's understudy, and while Gasca has generally not played Lackey's inside slot position, he is likely to shift inside, as coaches have come to value his hands and ability. Carroll is athletic and a potential threat. Both are young, but talented. Should be interesting to watch their progress.
- With Isaksen out as place kicker and Frost in doubt for kickoff duty, senior Vasya Bogdanoff - who has punted extremely well - will likely handle these additional duties.
- The Vikings will also miss Lackey and Isaksen on defense. Lackey was the starting free safety and leads the team in interceptions and is second in tackles. Isaksen was the backup safety. With both out, cornerback Brandon Preslar slides to free safety, a position he played quite well last year. In fact, I always thought Preslar was better suited in a centerfielder role. Gasca and Carroll will also see action in the defensive backfield.
- If Frost is unable to go for any length of time...well, then the Vikes better get that passing game going. With Frost out, it seems that sophomore Shae Giddens has moved into the number two spot on the RB depth chart. This is subject to change as the week progresses. Tyler Reside also has RB experience and could be a moved if necessary.
- If Stuart is unable to go, the Vikings will once again turn to junior Gunnar Ecklund, who played exceptionally well in his first varsity action last Friday. I would expect Ecklund to be on the field in one way or another regardless of whether Stuart is back at left tackle. Junior Taylor Metzger filled in well on the defensive line and was one of the Vikes' leading tacklers last Friday.
No news on the QB situation, other than the obvious note that Lackey is out of the picture. Lackey - who started last week versus Monroe - was one of three QB's the Vikings rotated last week. Erstwhile starter Bryson Daggett and sophomore Jake Nelson (who apparently did not travel with the JV team today for the first time all season, he was at film study) will likely continue to split time unless Tri reaches a decision of some sort. Neither played particularly well last week, although Daggett did throw the only touchdown pass. Daggett was 2/10 passing for 10 yards, while Nelson was 1/4 passing for seven yards. Not exactly inspiring numbers, but to be fair the weather conditions did not lend well to the passing game. However, in similar weather last year, both Jackson and Lake Stevens had no problem moving the ball through the air in a 50-49 overtime shootout.
We'll have more on the injury situation, the QB depth chart and the Oak Harbor gameplan as the week goes on.