BLUE EARTH - The Class 3A, No. 4 ranked Blue Earth Area Bucs scored 33 points in the first half and six in the second half to run away with a 39-6 nonconference football victory over the Windom Area Eagles on Friday night at Wilson Field in Blue Earth.
The Bucs defense stifled the Eagles from the onset, tackling Windom Area running back Andrew Pfeffer for an eight-yard loss on their first offensive play. A run for no-gain and a five yard pass left the Eagles to punt, from their own 20.
The Eagles long snapper sent the ball over the punter's head, to give the Bucs possession inside the 10.
DOWN?AND?OUT — Blue Earth Area linebacker Gus Phillips tackles Windom Area running back Jeff Pfeffer in the second quarter of a nonconference game on Friday night at Wilson Field in Blue Earth. Photo by Leanna Becker
Kysten Zierke took no time to get the ball in the endzone and scored on a 6-yard run with 8:18 left in the quarter to make it 6-0.
"Our defense set up out offense early on in the game again. They really set the tone for us and make it difficult for the other team to do what they want to," said Blue Earth Area head coach Randy Kuechenmeister.
Blue Earth Area's Carter Hanson helped set up the next scoring drives with runs of 17 and seven yards to give the Bucs the ball on the 11.
The Bucs extended their lead with another Zierke touchdown, an 11-yard run with 2:56 left in the first quarter to make it 12-0.
"We were sloppy. We had too many turnovers and a few mistakes but we did what we needed to do in order to get the win tonight," said Kuechenmeister.
Bucs' running back David Franta, who rushed for 120 yards in the victory, picked up 60 yards when he drove through the line to a wide open field to score with 9:27 left in the second quarter to make it 19-0.
Hanson, who ran for 80 yards in the game, generated a 22-yard touchdown run along the Windom sideline to make it 26-0 with 4:02 left in the first half.
Blue Earth Area's Justin Ritter caught a Michael Rivera pass for an interception late in the second quarter, and returned it to the three-yard line for the Bucs.
Ritter was then given the ball on the ensuing play to score the 3-yard touchdown to make it 33-0 with 3:26 left in the quarter.
"We are a little more versatile on defense, but we continue to be a work in progress. It wasn't perfect and still some things to iron out," said Kuechenmeister.
On the Bucs' first drive of the second half, Franta streaked down the field for a 38-yard gain to set up the 8-yard touchdown pass from Zierke to Hanson to make it 39-0 with 5:56 left in the third quarter.
Windom Area managed to score their lone touchdown of the game with 2:43 left in the fourth quarter on a 3-yard run by Cody Jurgens at 2:43. Rivera set up the score with a 62-yard scamper down the Blue Earth Area sideline, giving the Eagles the ball on the 15.
The Eagles' Rivera was 6-for-23 passing for 90 yards and threw one interception. Rivera's main target in the loss was Collin Lovell who caught three passes for 72 yards.
For the Bucs, Zierke completed 4-of-13 passing for 56 yards for one touchdown and threw three interceptions. Blue Earth Area's ground game rushed 42 times for 296 yards, with Franta running nine times for 120, Hanson running nine times for 80 and Gus Phillips contributing 59 yards on six carries.
Blue Earth Area (3-0) travels to New Ulm for a 7 p.m. game next Friday night.
Windom (0-3) hosts Worthington in a 7 p.m. game next Friday night.
W 0 0 0 6 - 6
BEA 12 21 6 0 - 39
BEA - Kysten Zierke 6 run (kick fail), 8:18.
BEA - Kysten Zierke 11 run (pass fail), 2:56.
BEA - David Franta 40 run (Harseim kick), 9:27.
BEA - Carter Hanson 22 run (Harseim kick), 4:02.
BEA - Justin Ritter 3 run (Harseim kick), 3:26.
BEA - Dallas Barslou 8 yard pass from Kysten Zierke (kick fail), 5:56.
W - Cody Jurgens 3 run (kick fail), 2:43.
First Downs: W 6; BEA 15. Rushing: W 24-(-3); BEA 42-296. Passing: W 6-23-1-90; BEA 4-13-3-56. Fumbles-lost: W 0-0; BEA 3-2. Penalities: W 7-50; BEA 7-50.
Offense: Rushing: David Franta (BEA) 9-120; Carter Hanson (BEA) 9-80; Gus Phillips (BEA) 6-59; Michael Rivera (W) 14-28. Passing: Michael Rivera (W) 6-23-1-90; Kysten Zierke (BEA) 4-13-56-3. Receiving: Collin Lovell (W) 3-72. Defense: Interceptions: Jacob Gotto (W) 2, Victor Ogeka (W) and Justin Ritter (BEA).
Madelia 44, Granada-Huntley-East Chain/Truman 22 - The Blackhawks' Adam Cooling went 17-for-36 passing for 406 yards, threw five touchdowns and two interceptions to lead Madelia to a 44-22 victory over the Jaguars on Friday night in Madelia.
Madelia's Ricki Fenske helped secure the win with a 75-yard kickoff return for a touchdown in the third quarter to make it 36-22 in the Blackhawks' favor.
Blackhawks wide out John Whitney caught three passes for 138 yards, while Jack Bergeman caught seven for 109.
Devin Ulman also was over the century mark, catching four passes for 112 yards for Madelia.
Jake Denn led the Blackhawk ground game with 15 carries for 22 yards, and defensively recorded 12 tackles including two quarterback sacks.
The Jaguars' DaMarko Thomas led the offense with 19 carries for 180 yards with two touchdowns, while Dylan Petrowiak ran 11 times for 68 yards and one touchdown.
Jake Wolter rushed seven times for 43 yards in the loss.
Chandler Greier completed 9 of 28 passes for 95 yards for the Jaguars.
Jeremy Smith caught four passes for 45 yards in the loss.
Madelia (2-1) travels to play Janesville-Waldorf-Pemberton at 7 p.m. on Friday in Janesville.
Granada-Huntley-East Chain/Truman (0-3) hosts Randolph at 7 p.m. Friday night in Granada.
Martin County West 35, New Richland-Hartland-Ellendale-Geneva 16 - The Mavericks generated 429 total yards of offense to outpace the Panthers in a 35-16 Gopher Valley Conference victory on Friday night in New Richland.
For the Mavericks, Mitch Sitzmann ran 17 times for 157 yards and one touchdown, while teammate Austin Krumwiede ran five times for 65 yards.
Jake Faber completed 12 of 17 passes for 158 yards and two touchdowns in the win for Martin County West.
Cordell Weber made six receptions for 84 yards and one touchdown for the Mavericks.
Krumwiede caught four passes for 51 yards and Sitzmann had two receptions for 23 yards.
Panthers quarterback Casey Rosacker completed 13 of 23 passes for 207 yards and two touchdowns.
Rosacker connected with Preston Peterson for five catches and 65 yards, along with Spencer Tollefson for four catches and 68 yards.
Martin County West (2-1) plays host to Melrose Area at 7 p.m. next Friday night in Sherburn.
NRHEG (0-3) travels to Lake Crystal-Wellcome Memorial at 7 p.m. next Friday night.