If only there was a magic bag of tricks, Gavin Lake could reach in and perform a quick-fix for what ailed his Okanagan Sun in the club’s 2012 season opener.
In reality, the Sun head coach and his staff will simply be stressing the fundamentals this week in the wake of Saturday night’s lopsided B.C. Football Conference defeat at the hands of the Langley Rams.
“We just have to go back to the basics, it’s as simple as that,” said Lake, whose club will visit the Kamloops Broncos Sunday night.
“Blocking, tackling, knowing the point of attack, the basic things you have to do to be successful.”
The basics also include holding on to the football, a fundamental duty the Sun struggled with from start to finish against Langley.
The Rams turned eight Okanagan turnovers into 35 points en route to a 42-14 dismantling of the Sun, the team’s biggest ever home-opening loss.
Rookie quarterback Cam Bedore, who had just four full practices under his belt prior to Saturday, fumbled three times, the first two leading to Langley touchdowns, both by former Sun running back Daniel Xavier.
Bedore also threw three interceptions as the Sun fell into a 14-0 hole early and simply couldn’t climb out.
“It’s one of those things, if you turn over the ball over as much as we did, you just can’t win,” he said. “We have a rookie quarterback in there who hasn’t had a lot of reps.
“We had a lot of good performances from some guys, but not nearly enough.
We threw too many interceptions, fumbled too many times and took some costly penalties.”
Given the short field the Rams were given to work with much of the night, Lake was generally pleased with the play of the Sun defense.
Another bright spot was the play of Sun veteran Bobby Davis who scored both majors and racked up 100 yards in total offense.
With a roster turnover of close to 50 per cent and many players with little or no junior football experience, Lake knew his club would be a work in progress this season.
It’s a one-step-at-a-time philosophy for Lake and the Sun, with the Kamloops Broncos next on the agenda.
“That’s the challenge with the young guys we have in there, it takes some time to find their comfort level…but that will come,” Lake said. “I think it’s safe to assume we’ll see a much tighter game in Kamloops, and if we can do a much better job of hanging on to the football, then we should be in good shape.”
The Sun and Broncos meet Sunday evening at Hillside Stadium in Kamloops. Kick off is 5 p.m.