That's a wrap: Tuscola cruises on the road
CLINTON — The Warriors built a 28-0 lead in the second quarter and led by as much as 48-7 in cruising to a road win.
Eli Kauffman gave Tuscola its first points on a 3-yard TD run. Nolan Walsh scored on a 32-yard pass as the margin grew to four touchdowns. Cole Evans capped the scoring for the Warriors with an 8-yard TD run in the third period.
Caleb Luck got Clinton on the scoreboard with a 60-yard TD run in the second quarter.
Villa Grove 39
WESTVILLE — Ryan Pearce rushed for 166 yards and three touchdowns and Villa Grove did not allow a point in the second half in pulling away to a road win.
Pearce scored on runs of 1, 2 and 2 yards. His second and third TDs came after Westville drew within 18-12 on a Shane Overshiner 2-yard TD run in the second quarter.
Villa Grove finished with 351 yards on 65 carries.
Overshiner carried 17 times for 111 yards.
El Paso-Gridley 14
PAXTON — Thanks to 250 yards rushing from Drew Schrodt, the Panthers are halfway toward their win total from a year ago.
"Overall, it's just a great win," Paxton-Buckley-Loda coach Jeff Graham said. "We must cherish every win. We're going to celebrate this tonight. Our kids are awesome. They work hard, and they're just great kids."
Schrodt went 52 yards with 6:44 left in the first quarter. He followed up with a 41-yard TD burst in the second quarter and finished the half with 146 yards on 12 carries.
He saved his best for last, scoring his third rushing touchdown on an 86-yard scamper with 9:14 left in the third quarter.
"Those edges out there (were wide open)," Graham said. "(The offensive line) opened up some holes up for Schrodt, and Drew ran the ball hard. It was a team effort, and that's what I'm proud of."
The Panthers shut out EPG in the first three quarters, sacking quarterback Bodee Schlipf five times.
Schrodt finished with three sacks and eight tackles, and Trent Wooten recorded nine tackles.
"I think our defense stepped up," Graham said. "These coaches had them prepared defensively. Schrodt and Wooten were absolutely relentless out there. They were coming off that edge and putting on pressure all night long."
— Andrew Rosten
SHELBYVILLE — Jared Hupp gained 119 yards on 20 carries as the Bombers racked up 415 total yards in a road win.
East Central 6
BROADLANDS — Zach Horatschki scored on three touchdown runs — including a tiebreaking 55-yarder in the second quarter — as the Comets spoiled Bill Harmon's coaching debut at East Central.
The Panthers got 54 yards rushing from DJ Robertson and seven tackles from Cole Board..
Cerro Gordo/Bement 62
DANVILLE — The Broncos looked smooth in their first game of a new co-op, racing to a 55-0 halftime lead.
"Obviously, it went decent," coach Andy Kerley said. "We still have to play better as a unit, but the kids came out and played hard. We came out better in this game than we have in the openers in the first two years I've been here. We kept the pedal to the metal."
Jordan Crist scored three touchdowns and ran for 112 yards. Steve Isbell had 89 yards rushing and a touchdown. Kyle Gideon had a team-high eight tackles, and Jacob Weedman returned an interception 40 yards for a score.
MONTICELLO — It took Monticello much of the first half to shake off first-game jitters. But once the Sages did, the offense and new-look defense flourished.
Quarterback Parker Trice found Austin Eckerty in the end zone from 7 yards out to give Monticello a 7-0 lead in the first half. That was just the start for the Sages.
Trice finished 9 for 13 for 91 yards and two touchdowns, including a 9-yard strike to tight end Colton Gibson to make it 28-0.
"We came out really slow, but as the second quarter came around it really started going bam, bam, bam," Trice said. "We were hitting our holes, we were running our routes. We were doing everything good."
The Sages stymied Warrensburg-Latham all night as the Cardinals entered the red zone once, coming away empty after failing to convert on fourth and 6 at Monticello's 7-yard line.
Junior linebacker Brendan Menacher had a team-high 11 tackles, and Ben Wilson recovered a fumble for a unit that held the Cardinals to 60 yards total offense.
Coach Cully Welter still sees room for improvement with the new scheme.
"In the summer (the defense) was solid against the pass. There's some definite holes against the run," he said. "I don't know as a staff if we really sold out and committed enough to it to be ready to use it. We're going to incorporate it, but maybe it won't be our base."
— Andrew Helregel
Mount Zion 12
MAHOMET — Matt Turner returned an interception 62 yards for a tiebreaking touchdown in the third quarter as the Bulldogs rallied at home.
"Obviously we have a lot to work on," M-S coach Keith Pogue said. "We were in the red zone four times and didn't score — that has to end.
"But I was very proud of the effort of our kids. They were physical and competed against a very good Mount Zion team."
Turner's pick put the Bulldogs ahead 12-6. Tyler Francisco's 25-yard run in the fourth quarter made it 19-6 before Mount Zion scored with 45 seconds left.
M-S, which started five sophomores, recovered the onside kick and ran out the clock.
"We knew we were going to be good on defense," Pogue said. "The young kids stepped up and were dynamite."
Jordan Rock ran for 82 yards in the first half for M-S, which drew even at 6-6 on Francisco's 20-yard run.
— Terry Greene
GIBSON CITY — Nick Meunier rushed for 117 yards and two touchdowns for the Falcons, who built a 30-0 halftime lead and cruised to a Heart of Illinois Conference victory.
Jordyn Schultz racked up three TDs, on runs of 3, 7 and 3 yards, and finished with 53 yards rushing. Nick Retherford contributed 93 yards and a TD to GCMS' dominating ground attack. The Falcons racked up 434 yards on 42 carries.
Meunier's tallies came on runs of 29 and 63 yards.
ROBINSON — With Watseka clinging to a 12-6 lead after Robinson scored in the third quarter, Austin Kidwell returned the ensuing kickoff 79 yards for a touchdown to give the Warriors breathing room.
Daulton DePatis clinched the outcome with a 44-yard scoring run with 1:20 left.
MARTINSVILLE — Kevin Allen rushed for 113 yards and two touchdowns for the Blue Devils, who limited Martinsville to 31 total yards.
Dustyn Ingram caught four passes for 94 yards, including a 36-yard TD pass from Caleb Bergman. Bergman also threw a 23-yard TD pass to Ty Hufford.
The Blue Devils finished with 322 total yards.
MACKINAW — Shane Bruning scored four touchdowns, including one on an interception return, to lead the Panthers to a road win.
"Ecstatic with our start," LeRoy coach B.J. Zeleznik said. "Deer Creek had a 20-game home regular-season winning streak. It was a huge win for us, Gives us lots of confidence."
COLFAX — Hans Carmien had 20 tackles and 73 yards rushing, including a 3-yard plunge, but the Bunnies couldn't stop Mustangs running back Josh Weier.
Weier had four rushing touchdowns for Ridgeview.
"I think we're still a relatively young team," Fisher coach Matt Leng said. "I think we learned that we've gotta get a little better. We've gotta learn to overcome adversity."
Carmien scored with 18 seconds left before halftime to get within 22-6, but Ridgeview pulled off a successful onside kick to open the second half. The Mustangs scored on the next play.
"It was one of those where things didn't go well for us early, and we didn't respond," Leng said.
St. Joseph-Ogden 67
MARSHALL — Chase Patton ran for 147 yards and three scores, the defense got into the act with a pair of return touchdowns, and the Spartans cruised.
Quarterback Jordan Walsh was 9-of- 12 passing for 143 yards and a pair of touchdowns.
Aaron Waller added a pair of touchdown runs for SJ-O.
Connor Janes, Bryce Stewart, Corbin Hesterberg and Orion Ciota all scored touchdowns for the Spartans, who outscored Marshall 40-0 in the second half.
TOLONO — An hour delay could not stop Unity from picking up a win in Week 1.
The Rockets rolled despite dealing with a lengthy delay when a transformer problem cut the lights at Hicks Field.
The Unity offense, which features first-year starters at key positions like quarterback and running back, played like veterans against the Hawks. The Rockets got a pair of rushing touchdowns from Mitch Negangard and Taylor White as well as rushing touchdowns from Micah Johnson, Justin Deters and Connor Grace.
Negangard led the offense with 106 yards rushing, Grace added 96 yards out of the backfield.
Deters, the Rockets' new quarterback, overcame nerves late in the second quarter when he hit Micah Johnson for a 68-yard touchdown pass. Deters finished 4 of 9 for 103 yards. Johnson was responsible for 80 of those passing yards.
Unity's defense was no slouch in the home opener, either. In the first half Meridian had minus-11 yards of offense and finished with 45 yards total. Negangard had five tackles, one for a loss.
— Chris Davies
Decatur Lutheran 0
DECATUR — Tyson Reed had touchdown runs of 4 and 5 yards and the Buffaloes had all the fun in the first night game at Decatur Lutheran.
Rylee Goodwin hooked up with Ryan Berry for two touchdown receptions — 19 and 53 yards — and Dylan Bina returned the second-half kickoff 80 yards for another score. Bina had a team-high 98 yards rushing and Goodwin was 8 for 11 for 151 yards.
Dylan Mills had two interceptions and Troy Rodriguez also picked off a pass.
St. Thomas More 28
STANFORD — Storm Joop threw two touchdown passes and ran for another score to lead St. Thomas More to a season-opening win on the road. Joop hit Mike Plecki with a 60-yard scoring strike and completed a 15-yard touchdown pass to A.J. Young. Joop and Nate Stringer each had 2-yard touchdown runs.
"(Joop) had a good night throwing the ball," STM coach Dan Hennessey said. "He spread the ball around. Kevin (Carroll) had four catches, too. It's a really big lift for this team winning that first one. It gives us some momentum. We're not big on numbers, but the guys we have played their (butts) off."
Milford/Cissna Park 41
MILFORD — Josh Marquez scored on a 5-yard pass and ran 10 yards for another TD to lead Milford-Cissna Park to victory. Jake Rogers rushed for 117 yards, including a 3-yard TD run, for the Bearcats. Jacob Marquez was 6-of-10 passing for 73 yards, and Beau Anderson caught three passes for 53 yards. Anderson also rushed for 63 yards with a 5-yard TD run.
Tri-County scored in the fourth quarter on Michael Hudson's 10-yard run.