The Storm Lake High football team should feature a more balanced offensive attack this season if last Friday's intra-squad game is any indication.
Fleet-footed running back Tyson Brandt broke off some long runs made possible by some good blocking up front. Tornado quarterback Mitch McCabe, now fully healthy, also completed a number of passes.
"We showed more balance between the pass and the run," McCabe said Sunday. "I thought our offensive line made nice gaps for our backs to run through."
Brandt played in the slot last season and should be a major factor both as a runner this fall and as a receiver out of the backfield.
"He's used to catching passes after he played a slot receiver last year," McCabe said. "He's a very quick back with good speed."
The Tornadoes' head coach added that his offensive lineman need some fine tuning.
"We just need to get some blocking techniques down a little better," he said.
He added that the team's No. 1 defense also performed well during the scrimmage.
The Tornadoes will need a strong offensive and defensive showing Friday night in their season and home opener against Sheldon, sixth-rated in 2A in pre-season rankings. The Orabs finished as Class 2A state runners-up last fall. They beat the Tornadoes 23-7 last year in Sheldon.
"They lost a lot of kids but return some good athletes," McCabe said.
"They run a wishbone offense, which they execute very well," he added.
" A key in stopping it is to avoid giving up big gains on first down. If our defense can do that and we avoid mental mistakes on both sides of the ball, we should be OK."
Friday night's game at Tornado Stadium starts at 7:30 p.m.