When Dunkirk coach Rob Genco sat down and looked at the film from last week's 21-12 loss to Pioneer, the first-year coach liked what he saw for the most part.
Even when he looked at a merciless minute of football in which Pioneer returned a kickoff for a touchdown followed by a Dunkirk fumble and another Pioneer score, Genco found positives.
"The thing is, what I was most proud of, was the boys didn't implode after that," he said. "It was one minute of breakdown of execution. Pioneer didn't score in the fourth quarter. We were in a position to win the game. Our kids didn't fold which shows the character. They are buying what we are selling."
The Marauders will look to get their first win of the season tonight when they travel to Olean for a 7:30 p.m. contest.
Last week, Pioneer was much bigger than Dunkirk up front. However, the Marauders were still able to rush for nearly 300 yards. Olean is a team with comparable size to Dunkirk and that fact has Genco excited about the matchup.
"It's speed versus speed this week," he said. "We feel better about the matchup and we feel better prepared. They are what they have been and do what they do. We are a little more diverse than them offensively. They want to spread it out and run some zone read and QB counter and throw the ball. I think we are ready. We had a great week of practice."
One area Genco would like to see improvements in is the passing game after the team went just 1-for-14 in the air.
"The one thing we need to do better is we want to be a balanced offense," he said. "We want to attack in the air like we do on the ground. We missed some easy passes. On the one we completed, we didn't execute. We looked at the tape and there was more good than bad. We just didn't complete easy passes. Kevin Burns is a young guy who will take ownership. He told me he needs to do a better job. That's how you fix it. If he didn't take ownership, he can't fix it. The fact he took ownership shows it's going to get fixed."
Dunkirk will also be better prepared this week after losing both offensive guards on the first series of the game last week.
"I hate saying it, it's an excuse and I don't like built in excuses, but those two guards going down doesn't help," Genco said. "It shrinks the playbook. You don't want to try things if you have new guys in there. But we moved the ball."
Notes: Starting guard Juan Fred will not play due to injury and Juliam Fred is a game-time decision. Lucas Lugan and Josh Galardo are slotted as replacements.