Concordia Panthers Get Back in the Win Column Against Hiawatha, 38-12
The Concordia High School Football team rushed for five touchdowns and rolled up 480 total yards of offense, ending their three-game losing streak by defeating the Hiawatha Red Hawks Friday, September 30th, 38-12.
The Panthers committed five turnovers, but their diverse game plan featuring ten playmakers touching the ball kept the Red Hawks from honing in on a designated player in critical situations.
After Hiawatha was forced to punt on the opening drive of the game, the Concordia Panthers took over possession and quickly reached the red-zone when Senior Running Back Stryker Hake broke the longest play of the game, a 48-yard run that set up first-and-goal.
Junior Running Back Caleb Hanson then showed off his athleticism by jumping over a defender and scoring on a 7-yard touchdown run, capping off the 8 play, 79-yard drive.
Junior Running Back Mason Eickmann squeezed into the end zone for the two-point conversion run, putting Concordia on top 8-0 with 5:53 remaining in the first quarter.
In the second quarter, the Panthers were marching down the field, including pass completions to Junior Payton Breese and Sophomore Dane Cleveland, before Hiawatha Defensive Back Bradyn Newell reeled in a red-zone interception.
Following a three-and-out by Hiawatha, the Panthers commenced to score again when Hake ran it in from 2-yards.
Hanson ran in a two-point-conversion to give Concordia a 16-0 lead with 5:53 left in the first-half.
Red Hawks Senior Quarterback Ashton Rockey scored on a 1-yard run late in the second quarter to cut Concordia's lead to 16-6 heading to the locker room.
Hanson, the Panthers returner, was able to reach the Hiawatha 45-yard line on the opening kickoff of the second half.
Six plays later, Concordia Junior Wingback Dustin Sterrett took a reverse 5-yards for the score, increasing the Panthers' lead.
Hake ran into the end zone to convert the two-point conversion giving Concordia a 24-6 advantage with 9:10 to go in the third.
Panther Quarterback Braeden Primeaux's fourth interception of the game set up Hiawatha's second scoring drive. Sophomore Quarterback Alex Pyle tossed a 13-yard touchdown pass to Rockey to make it 24-12 with 2:30 remaining in the third frame.
Hiawatha then recovered an onside kick at the midfield stripe. But two plays later, Pyle fumbled the ball at the Concordia 25, where it was recovered by Panthers Defenisve Lineman Gunnar Hale.
Coach Jordan Echer, displaying his belief in his young quarterback, continued to keep taking shots downfield when they presented themselves. On the team's first play from scrimmage following the Red Hawks turnover, Primeaux stood comfortably in the pocket on play action and delivered a 22-yard pass to Senior Tight End Chayton Alquist-Pennell.
Primeaux connected on 6-of-13 passes for 92 yards, while Alquist-Pennell led the Panthers with 2 catches for 40-yards.
Three plays later, Hake put Concordia back on the board with a 39-yard touchdown run to give the Panthers a 30-12 lead at the end of the third quarter.
Hake rushed for 198 yards on 16 carries and accounted for two touchdowns. Stryker was named our Nex-Tech Wireless MVP of the Game.
The final scoring drive of the game saw Concordia march 73 yards in 7 plays, all rushes. Primeaux finished off the drive with a 4-yard touchdown run for his third touchdown of the season.
Hanson ran in his second two-point conversion to give Concordia the 38-12 victory.
Hanson ended the night with 8 carries for 58 yards and a touchdown. Sterrett had 8 carries for 50 yards and a touchdown. Senior Alec Francis and Junior Joey Henderson each had 3 rush attempts on the night, while Eickmann had 2 carries for 18 yards.
Concordia outgained Hiawatha 480-164 in total yards, including limiting the Red Hawks to 29 rushing yards.
Sophomore Tracer Murdock, a two-way starter on the offensive and defensive line, received our H&R Block of the Game.
Murdock is averaging 4 tackles per game and has 3 tackles for loss on the year.
Junior Defenisve Lineman Keegun Beims recorded a fumble recovery in the win.
Improving to 2-3 on the year, Concordia will play its first of back-to-back road games on Friday, October 7th when it takes on North Central Kansas League rival Clay Center at 7 pm. The Tigers had won three straight games before falling in a 26-14 setback to state-ranked Southeast of Saline on Friday. Live coverage of the game can be heard on 1390 KNCK, 98.3 FM and NCKToday.com.