By Tiffany L. Rehbein
In the 33-12 MSU-Northern Lights swamping, defensive effort by the football team was the best thing that head coach Walt Currie saw Saturday afternoon.
The Lights, in its first year as a full member of the Frontier Conference, held its first scrimmage at Blue Pony Stadium against the semi-pro Bozeman Kodiaks.
Last season, the Lights, who went 3-3, defeated the Kodiaks 31-2 and 9-0 in non-league play.
The defense did a nice job, Currie said. I thought they looked fairly solid. We had all our kids back from last year on defense. They looked very tough this year versus this time last year.
On the opening Lights kick-off, Northern attacked immediately, collecting two points on an opening safety.
Those two points lifted the Lights to a lead they never relinquished en route to the victory.
We got a chance, I think, to play everybody, Currie said. We got a good look at everybody.
The Lights ran four different quarterbacks; returning starter Chris Jackson, John Parrish, Zachary Rathbun and Nick Poolaw. Currie plans to start Jackson next weekend.
T. Artis, a freshman from Missoula, showed some speed and agility at wide receiver for the Lights.
Artis, he did a pretty good job, he had a pretty good game, Currie said. It was nice to see some speed like that.
Currie said the kicking game was a little behind, compared to the rest of the game. The young offensive line also seemed to be a weakness.
We know we cant kick field goals from very far out, Currie said.
But Currie was pleased with what he described as a solid defensive line and solid receivers on offense.
The quarterbacks showed some promise in the time that they played, Currie said.
The Lights open the regular season Saturday, Aug. 28, against Montana Tech at Butte. Play begins at 1 p.m.
I was pleased in a lot of aspects, Currie said about the scrimmage. But, if were going to compete in this league, we have some work to do.