Overpowering teams, and dominating them with physicality and brute force is the easiest way to turn momentum and suck the life out of your opponent. Moon Area head coach Ryan Linn, and starting Right Guard Trent Fraley know that feeling and both exclaimed similar sentiments in describing their 38-7 win over North Hills that pushed them to 4-0.
“It’s a great feeling,” both Linn and Fraley said of their ability to grind teams down with their offensive line and run game.
“Once you start and get going and feel that you know that you can do whatever you want, it really is the best feeling ever,” added Fraley.
Moon had that feeling early into the game when they drove 98 yards to score the first touchdown of the game. From there, they dominated and finished with a 38-7 win over North Hills, which featured four rushing touchdowns, and 24 unanswered points to end the game.
“They start to feel it, and they start to nudge me and say, ‘Hey, run the ball here,'” Linn joked. “We talk about seizing those moments and taking over. When they are feeling it, it is easy to lean on.”
Of course, it helps when you have NFL lineage on your offensive line. Trent Fraley was not shy to mention that he spent the offseason working with Detroit Lions offensive line coach, and former NFL lineman Hank Fraley. For Trent, that is just father-son bonding.
“I have been working with my dad, obviously, to work on things that I can do,” noted Fraley. “Working with him over the summer has helped me learn, a lot.”
Fraley believes he has upped his game in every way and thinks his added quickness, and smarts as a blocker can help make this an offense that can grind teams down with long drives.
It shows when you watch Fraley. As a right guard, it can be unnoticed how he impacts games, but to have a player with savvy and understanding such as Fraley, you can add elements to your playbook that other offenses do not have.
Pulls, reach blocks, power into the second level, and more can be shown by Fraley who has finesse footwork, and detail to his game, but of course, provides a skill set that mauls over defenders and finishes every play. Up 24-7 at the half, Moon was able to put their offense on the back of a veteran offensive line that is highlighted by Fraley. The Tigers effectively put the game away by consistently picking up first downs.
“Knowing you did your job and having the run game get behind you, is just an amazing feeling,” Fraley added on being asked to put games away.
The weather is just starting to get colder, and teams are going to have to be able to lean on their offensive line for key moments on the road to the WPIAL championship. To see that Moon is already able to do that, and may only be getting better in that area is a strong proposition in making the case for them to be at Heinz Field later this fall.
“We can’t get cocky or above ourselves,” said Fraley, who knows that while Moon is off to a great start, there is more to go.
The team that appears focused on the opponent in front of them will face that challenge on the road at Fox Chapel next weekend.