The Estevan Lions Club Bantam Steelers football team broke through offensively, but they were defeated 42-40 by Weyburn on August 31.
Coach Phil Zajac said the offence played very well, as the Steelers recorded their first points of the season after getting shut out in their first two games. Quarterback Andrew Kehler threw for a couple touchdown passes in what Zajac described as Kehler's best game of the season.
Running back Levi Pick racked up more than 100 yards rushing until he had to leave the game due to a recurring ankle problem. Several players recorded their first touchdowns this year.
"It was a big for confidence for the team," said Zajac. "Now they understand in their minds that they are able to do it."
Despite the number of points surrendered, the defence played well and did a lot of good things. Zajac noted that Jordan Howie made a couple big plays in the backfield and Preston Bergen played well in his first game at middle linebacker.
The defence needs to stop allowing the big plays, Zajac said.
Zajac said it was reminiscent of several games the Steelers were involved in last season, when they suffered several narrow losses.
Estevan was leading Weyburn 34-26 at half-time.
"The game was our's to win, and it just got away from us," said Zajac.
Estevan's record is 0-3. Their next game is Saturday, September 7 against the Regina Mounties. The game will start at 2 p.m. at the Woodlawn Athletic Park.
The Estevan Sherritt Coal Atom Miners dropped a 20-0 decision against the Regina Cardinals on August 31 in Regina.
Coach Wanda Harron said that it was a scoreless game until there was about 10 minutes to play in the fourth quarter. Both teams played a great game defensively.
"It was a really great battle between two teams that look like they're on their way to improving," said Harron.
The Miners had an interception, broke through past the Regina offensive line frequently and effectively tackled the opposition. Harron believes that Estevan might be one of the best defensive teams in the league, as they have allowed just 26 points in the last two games.
Offensively the Miners had some good drives and were in the red zone once, but a pass was intercepted at the four-yard-line.
"One thing I'm really proud of is we did try some passing plays, and had some success there," said Harron.
It was a good strong effort, and Harron applauded both teams for delivering an entertaining contest.
Harron said that the Miners will need to improve their angles when trying to tackle opponents, and their defensive play recognition when the opposing quarterback begins to scramble. And the offence, particularly the receivers and the slotbacks, need to do a better job of blocking during running plays.
They'll also try to introduce more schemes for their defensive plays, such as a blitz package, she said.
The Miners' record is 1-2. Their next game is September 7, when they will host Yorkton at noon at the athletic park.