“You won’t get better if you aren’t doing anything,” Lakers Head Coach Jeremy Braitenback said after Saturday’s game.
Normally the Lakers’ would have headed into week four of the season with a bye, instead they played a team from a different division in an exhibition game.
The Drumheller Titans travelled to Sylvan Lake on Sept. 30 for a friendly game, to keep both teams on their toes.
Braitenback says games like this help both teams continue to learn and grow as players, something they wouldn’t be able to do if they had taken the bye-week.
In the game versus the Titans, Braitenback says he can really see growth in his team.
“At the beginning of the year we had 36 points scored against us. Today we didn’t have any, I’d say that’s a pretty big improvement,” he said.
The Lakers’ defence was able to keep the Titans away from the goal line the entire game, though there were some plays that cut it close.
The defensive line is one area the team has been consistently working on all season.
This is an impressive feat against a three-time provincial championship team like the Titans.
“Drumheller is a really good team, and they played great,” said Braitenback.
The Lakers scored all 10 points, one field goal and a touchdown, in the first quarter. After that is was a defensive game back and forth.
The friendly match show how far the team has come in half a season, and prepares them for the last three games of the year.
Looking at the second half of the season, Braitenback hopes to see the team continue to grow as players and together as a team.
In the game against Drumheller Braitenback said he could really see his Grade 12 players come through as team leaders.
“I think this game in particular they really came through. They wanted the win and they made sure they would get it,” Braitenback said of the Grade 12 players.
The season is far from over for the Lakers, and the team will continue to work on defence through the coming weeks.
The Lakers are away this week and will be playing Rocky Mountain House Oct. 5 at 4 p.m.
“I’m not too worried about playing Rocky. I just want to see the continued growth.”
The team’s final home game of the regular season is set for Oct. 12, when the Lakers will take on the visiting Wetaskiwin Sabres. Kickoff is at 4 p.m.