Sports

Broncos no match for Rams' run game

Langley Rams
Langley Rams' Dylan Roper chases down Kamloops Broncos quarterback Steve Schuweiler during B.C. Football Conference action at McLeod Athletic Park on Sunday (Aug. 31). Roper's hit forced a fumble on the play, which Langley recovered en route to a 70-24 victory.
— image credit: Gary Ahuja/Langley Times

While their opponent was named the Broncos, it was the Langley Rams that did the bulk of the galloping on the field.

The Rams ground game was unstoppable, rushing for 313 yards on 31 carries — which worked out to an average of a first down per carry — as Langley blasted the visiting Kamloops Broncos 70-24 on Sunday night at McLeod Athletic Park.

Mario Narte rushed for 156 yards and three touchdowns while Ryan MacDonald finished with 121 yards and one score along the ground.

The victory improved Langley to 4-1 and a share of top spot in the B.C. Football Conference as the junior football season hits the halfway mark of its 10-game schedule.

The Broncos fell to 3-2.

The win comes one week after the Rams lost for the first time, a 52-44 setback to the Vancouver Island Raiders.

“I thought we finally started to put some pieces together and eliminate some mistakes,” said Langley coach Jeff Alamolhoda.

One big difference he noticed was the players operating as one unit.

“We started playing together a little bit more,” he explained.

“Guys were doing things unselfishly to spring guys for touchdowns.

“It was a good thing to see where guys were finally starting to understand that a victory is only accomplished by everyone working together.”

With the ground game so effective, Langley quarterback Dylan Tucker only attempted a dozen passes, completing nine for 126 yards and throwing three touchdowns.

Kyle Pich caught a pair of the touchdown passes, finishing with 77 yards on three receptions.

The other touchdown went to Malcolm Williams (three catches, 25 yards).

The Rams’ other two scores were an 86-yard punt return from Daniel English and a 77-yard pick-six from Clovis Lumeka.

Kicker Steve Thomas was good on all nine convert attempts, while also booting a pair of field goals and a single on an 85-yard kick-off.

The defence was led by Alex Agnoletto, who had 1.5 quarterback sacks, two solo tackles and two assists.

Dylan Roper also had 1.5 sacks, two solo tackles, two assists and a forced fumble, while Ethan Schulz picked up and ran 37 yards. Schulz and Brock Gowanlock had a sack apiece as well.

Lumeka and Alex Benning led Langley with four solo attacks apiece.

About the only drawback in the game was the Rams’ penalty troubles as they were flagged 24 times for 185 yards.

“We need to teach these young guys how to play physical but how to do it between the whistles and refrain from taking those last-second, selfish penalties,” Alamolhoda said.

Langley will also be in for a big test as they head to Kelowna’s Apple Bowl on Saturday night for a first-place showdown with the Okanagan Sun.

Both teams are 4-1 with the Sun’s lone loss a 33-20 defeat to the Rams in week 2.

“We have a challenge ahead of ourselves this weekend,” Alamolhoda said.

“We will see if our men can respond appropriately after the lopsided win and see if we can continue to play for each other for the victory.”

Gary Ahuja/Langley Times

Langley Rams running back Mario Narte dives for the end zone, one of three touchdowns he scored in his team's 70-24 rout of the visiting Kamloops Broncos at McLeod Athletic Park on Sunday (Aug. 31) night.

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