St. James football falls short against Paola in season opener
Too many missed opportunities in the first half of the season-opening game on Friday contributed to St. James Academy's football team losing to Paola, 28-14.
“We had too many turnovers in that first half,” St. James coach Tom Radke said.
The Thunder (0-1) failed to take the lead in the first two quarters and entered the second half down, 14-7.
A little momentum was established in the third quarter when quarterback Alex King completed a 35-yard pass to Keith Winger to put the Thunder within scoring position.
“We got it going a little bit in the second half but with some poor decision-making offensively and missed tackles defensively, it put us in a bad position,” Radke said.
With 10 returning seniors and 18 juniors, a significant amount of players received first-time varsity minutes Friday night but failed to mimic last year’s success.
“It was a case of 10 guys doing what they were supposed to do and one guy not,” he said. “It’s not going to work out and that’s what happened tonight — it was just so many little things but luckily, it’s the first game.
“We hope to learn from our mistakes and get better,” he added. “That’s the plan anyway.” The next opportunity for the Thunder will be an away-game at 7 p.m., Sept. 13 against Bishop Ward High School.
“You know, we are just going to have to see how much we improve from the first game to the second game,” Radke said.