Written by Brandon Hill
In 2019, the Soda Springs Cardinals looked to retool their offense after the loss of starting quarterback Brock Thompson.
Before the season, Head Coach Colter Evans said he was eager to put an emphasis on the ground game and had high expectations for change. The Cardinals had struggled in the last half of the decade, failing to post a winning season since 2013.
But 2019 proved to be yet another challenging season for Soda Springs, and Evans once again faces the difficult task of propelling the Cardinals to the top of the 2A South East Idaho Conference.
Evans’ offense, led by receiver and running back Scott Hunsaker, struggled against a strong defensive conference. The Cardinals average just eight points last year, getting shut out twice against Firth and Bear Lake.
Scoring in the SEIC is no easy task, as Soda Springs competes against playoff powerhouses like the Bears, along with defending state champion West Side. The Pirates and Bears each posted nearly immovable defenses, both holding opponents below an average of 10 points per game.
Defense is where the Cardinals shined last year, allowing an average of 25 points per game last season, third-best in the conference behind the anomalies of Bear Lake and West Side. And toward the start of the season, the Cardinals posted valiant defensive efforts, holding Firth to 12 points, Ririe to 18 and North Fremont to 20.
In a run-heavy conference, Evans will need his front line to step up on every down, including senior defensive tackle Ethan Suter and senior defensive end Will Torman.
Soda Springs kicks off against Ririe Aug. 28 to start the season, and faces West Side Oct. 2 in an attempt to knock off the defending champs.
Check back with IdahoSports.com for updated Cardinal scores and schedules throughout the season.