A battle of the Cardinals kicked-off Class 2-1A, District 6 play on Friday. Ell-Saline took down last year’s power Plainville 22-0 to take control of a relatively weak district. Ell-Saline now sits at 4-1 overall, and Bennington is the only other team in District 6 with a winning record at 3-2.
Points were hard to come by for either side. Still knotted at zero in the second quarter, Ell-Saline finally got on the board with four minutes to play on a 21-yard pass from Garrett Walker to Keegan Hays. Midway through the third quarter, the duo again struck, this time for 34-yards and a 14-0 lead. Just a few minutes later, Justin Schmutz ran in from a yard out for the final score of the game. Walker finished his night with 141 yards, two scores, and an interception on 7-of-12 passing. Hays had the two catches for scores, and Kaleb Whitehair caught three passes for 59 yards. Schmutz led the rushing attack with 81 yards on 18 carries, and Toby Omli added 78 yards on 14 attempts.
The Bulldogs are one of three 1-0 teams in Class 2-1A, District 6 after a 42-6 victory over winless Republic County on Friday. Bennington (3-2 overall) scored two touchdowns in each of the first three quarters before Republic County scored in the final quarter.
The Bulldogs did most of their damage on the ground, using nine players to amass 318 yards on 47 carries. Senior Jake Stewart led the way with 160 yards on 12 carries, including a 78-yard touchdown. B.J. Glanton added two scores and 74 yards on nine carries, and Zach Fief scored twice and ran for 70 yards on seven carries. Freshman T.J. Ragnoni scored the other Bulldog touchdown on a 60-yard kick return. Defensively, Weston Lampe led the team with seven tackles. Cameron Stanley had an interception in the win.
The Warrior football team doubled its win total on Friday in front of a Homecoming crowd with a 54-10 thrashing of Sunrise Christian. Marion (2-3) led only 7-3 after one quarter, but pushed the lead to 27-10 by halftime.
Quarterback Taylor Heidebrecht’s nine-yard run put the Warriors on the board less than four minutes into the contest. Brody Carroll broke a big run early on in the second quarter to boost the lead to 14-3. Heidebrecht added two more rushing touchdowns later in the quarter for the sizable halftime lead. Carroll scored the next Warrior touchdown in the third quarter, then Caleb Williams ran in from 15 yards out for a 41-10 lead with 10 minutes to play in the game. Reserve quarterback Zach Robson got in the books on an eight-yard carry later in the fourth quarter, then intercepted a pass to help set up an Adam Janzen touchdown with three minutes to play. Grif Case knocked through five-of-six PAT tries on the night.
Medicine Lodge had only scored one touchdown heading into Friday’s Class 2-1A, District 5 opener against Inman. The Indians managed 22 points, but the Teutons prevailed, moving to 4-1 overall, 1-0 in district play with a 35-22 win.