KENNEWICK -- Tri-Cities Fever coach Adam Shackleford is a perfectionist.
He's always in pursuit of the perfect football game. Unfortunately for Shackleford, it hasn't happened yet.
And even though the Fever defeated the Seattle Timberwolves 63-33 on Saturday night at the Toyota Center, Shackleford found a few things to his dislike.
"I thought we were too up and down on offense," he said. "And I think we lost our focus on the bench when we had that early lead."
The Fever was up 14-0 five minutes into the game. But the Timberwolves bounced back to tie the game at 14-14.
"I thought we played up and down," Shackleford said. "When we do the right things, we're tough to play. You're gonna have some slow games on offense. You don't want to believe you'll have a letdown, but it happens."
Even so, Tri-Cities when into halftime with a 28-20 lead.
"I didn't like the attitude in the lockerroom at halftime," he said. "We were up by eight points, but we acted like we were down by 21. I don't want to say we're used to being up big, but I felt like we didn't have any energy at halftime."
Regardless, the Fever has a 7-1 record, and there are plenty of plusses with this team.
"I like the way we protected our quarterback (Houston Lillard)," said Shackleford.
"Please give my offensive line some credit for their protection," Lillard said after Saturday night's game. "And don't forget about (running back Dennis) Kennedy. He does a great job blocking too."
In fact, Lillard wasn't sacked Saturday.
Carl Barnett, Michael Brown, Jason Donnal and Irvin Stevens rotated all night through the three front line positions.
Shackleford also praised the play of Kennedy, who scored four touchdowns - two on runs and two on pass receptions.
Finally, "I liked the way the defense stopped (Seattle QB) Charles McCullum," he said.
Much of that had to do with the defensive line not letting the quick quarterback get outside of the pocket very often.
The Fever heads to Alaska on Friday for a Saturday night game against the Fairbanks Grizzlies.
Fairbanks is 6-3, winning six in a row after losing to the Fever on March 12.
It'll be a tough game, said Shackleford, because it's a long road trip, the crowd makes it tough to play there, and the Grizzlies are playing extremely well.
"I told our guys we're not going to be the Washington Generals go up there to play the (Harlem) Globetrotters."
Seattle coach Sean Ponder was still proud of his team after Saturday's loss.
"These guys all stuck together," Ponder said. "This is a tough environment to play in."
Ponder took over as coach two games ago after new owners bought the Kent Predators, renamed the team, and fired the old head coach.
"We're at 2-6," Ponder said. "We've gotta win the next five. We have to get one of those six playoff spots."