Bill Dee wasn't completely satisfied, mostly because his profession and the calendar don't permit it. Football coaches in September are fretful creatures who see missed assignments and potential disaster every time they fire up the video.
That said, Dee and his staff will have to work a bit to find fault with Phoebus's 52-0 crunch job against Bethel — as thorough a beating as you're likely to find one quality team administer to another.
"We played hard," Dee said. "For the second game of the season, that's a heck of a win. A lot of kids flying around to the ball, we caught the ball better tonight. A lot of kids got in the game, a lot of kids contributed."
And in the next breath: "There's going to be something on that film, I guarantee you. There was a mixup the first time we had the ball, and we'll have to get some things straight. But there's always something to work on, trust me. Trust me. Things that you guys won't see: blocking assignments, missed tackles. We were fortunate to beat a good football team, but we've still got a long way to go."
The Phantoms took care of Bethel the way a snake eats: methodically and completely.
Phoebus held a 454-96 edge in total offense and scored touchdowns the last eight times it had the ball, not counting a one-play, run-out-the-clock sequence at the end of the first half.
Phantom defenders were in Bethel quarterback Aris McGlone-English's kitchen most of the evening and never let Bruins tailback Jontel Evans get started.
Evans, the two-sport star who plans to play hoops at Virginia, managed just 32 yards on 11 carries. Monday night was a world away from last year's meeting, when he scooted for 161 yards on 18 carries, including a 64-yard touchdown the first time he touched the ball.
"We kind of focused on Jontel, because last year he put up big numbers on us," Phoebus defensive tackle and chief havoc-wreaker Dominik Davenport said. "So our main focus was to stop him."
Last year Bethel crashed the Phoebus-Hampton duet at the top of the Peninsula District. The Bruins beat Hampton — the Crabbers' first regular-season district loss to someone other than Phoebus in the past five years.
Bethel also threw a scare into the Phantoms before Phoebus rebounded late for a 30-27 victory. Woodside remains the only District team beside Hampton to beat the Phantoms in the past five years.
"We kept hearing about last year's game, last year's game," Dee said, "Jontel ran for a lot of yards against us, and the kids were determined that wasn't going to happen again."
And if the Phantoms needed any reminder, Dee made a "highlight" video of last year's game, in which Bethel came back from a 20-7 deficit to take a 27-20 lead in the fourth quarter.
"It was a long video," Dee said wryly.
The Phantoms pounded Bethel in the first half, holding onto the ball for 15:31 of the first 24 minutes on the way to a 25-0 lead. Tailback Shawne Alston rushed for 102 of his 119 yards and three touchdowns in the first half, including a 14-yard dash over left tackle on which he somehow was untouched.
In the second half, Phoebus quarterback Tajh Boyd threw for 117 yards and three touchdowns to three receivers.
"They put eight (players) in the box," Dee said of Bethel's defense, "so we just started taking advantage of the passing game more in the second half, and we played hard. Tajh started to find a rhythm and he's getting more comfortable with his receivers."
While the teams appeared comparable last season, Monday's result sent a message to the rest of the district.
"They're a good team," Alston said of Bethel. "Anybody can be dangerous on any night, but when we come out and execute and don't turn the ball over, I don't think anybody can mess with us."
At least not until Dee rolls the video.
Dave Fairbank can be reached at 247-4637 or by e-mail at email@example.com