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|10/10/2012 ||Email this article Print this article |
Pointers pull away from Rebels in final three quarters
|Northeast senior Ben Hildebrandt makes a tackle during the Rebels’ game with Tipton, while teammate Matt Lorenzen looks on. The two players accounted for both of Northeast’s touchdowns during Friday’s game with Center Point-Urbana as Lorenzen tossed scoring passes of 54 and 25 yards to Hildebrandt, who is tied for sixth in class 2A with seven touchdown receptions.
Photo by Ross Eberhart|
By Ross Eberhart
Taking on the top rushing team in the district, the Northeast football team knew what to expect during Friday night's road contest with Center Point-Urbana.
The Rebels loaded the box with defenders to stop the Stormin' Pointers from running between the tackles and early on the move paid off.
The strategy, though, also left Northeast with some vulnerabilities and the Pointers were more than happy to take advantage as Center Point-Urbana threw for three touchdowns and attacked Northeast on the outside in a 55-12 rout.
"I think in the first quarter we did a really good job of shutting down their rushing attack," Northeast head coach Ryan Unruh said. "I believe they thought they would just roll over us between the tackles, but we did a good job of stuffing them.
"Later in the game when they were having more success in the running game it was usually to the outside."
With the Rebels committed to stop the run, Center Point-Urbana got on the board first through the air as quarterback Ryan Wilkin tossed an 18-yard touchdown a little over five minutes into the first quarter. The extra point was good and it was 7-0.
It seemingly did not take long for the Rebels to come back with their answer as Tevin Stoecker took the ensuing Pointer kickoff and returned it all the way back to the end zone for a touchdown.
A block-in-the-back penalty, though, wiped out the touchdown and instead gave the Rebels the ball on their own 46-yard line.
Undaunted, the Rebels proceeded to score immediately anyway as quarterback Matt Lorenzen fired a strike to Ben Hildebrandt in stride and the senior receiver carried it the rest of the way for a 59-yard touchdown. The point after try was no good, but the Rebels were back within one.
"Ben came up and told me that he thought we could get them with a long pass play and I said 'alright, tell Matt'," Unruh recalled. "We basically scored back-to-back touchdowns and it was all Ben's call."
Unfortunately, the Rebel momentum proved to be short-lived as Center Point-Urbana came right back with a touchdown on the ground to make it 14-6.
The Pointers added an interception late in the first quarter and Wilkin threw his second touchdown of the game for another score.
The Rebels came up empty on their next possession and Center Point-Urbana turned to Wilkin again and the quarterback came up with touchdown pass number three to make it 28-6.
The Pointer momentum kept growing as Center Point-Urbana came up with another interception, this one being returned all the way back to the end zone for another touchdown. The extra point was good again and it was 35-6 Pointers.
It was the Rebels, however, who scored the final points of the first half as Lorenzen hooked up with Hildebrandt again, this time for a 25-yard touchdown with under a minute remaining in the game.
The conversion attempt failed, but Northeast had cut into their deficit before the break.
The second half belonged to Center Point-Urbana as the Pointers began to pick up yards in chunks on the ground, while slowing the Rebels down.
The result was a 20-0 Pointer advantage over the final two quarters with all three touchdowns coming on the ground.
Lorenzen completed seven passes to six different receivers with two touchdowns and two interceptions, while Kevin Boughton led Northeast on the ground with eight yards rushing.
Both of Hildebrandt's catches went for touchdowns and the senior finished the game with 79 yards receiving (Hildebrandt needs just 14 more yards to break the program record for a single season set in 1971).
Boughton, Cole Dickey, Derick Johns, Jack Murphy and Stoecker also had catches for the Rebels. Johns' catch went for 17 yards with Stoecker adding 13 yards on his catch.
Johns and Stoecker also led the Rebel defense with the former player coming up with nine tackles (five solo) and the latter eight tackles with six solo.
Murphy joined Johns with five solo tackles, while Dickey and Jake Nelson both had seven stops in the game.
The Rebels return to Goose Lake for their home finale with another challenging opponent - Dyersville Beckman.
The Blazers are one of two undefeated teams left in district play (Cascade is the other, and those two teams will meet in the season finale) and have not lost since a non-district season opener with Western Dubuque which they dropped 7-6.
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