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Football

Young Stangs Move to 4-0

 By Jerry Lindsey

The undefeated Morrison fresh-soph football team was scheduled to be the
opening act for the showdown between the undefeated varsity teams from
Newman and Morrison, but they turned out to be the main feature as they
dealt the undefeated visitors from Newman a 16-6 loss.

Both teams brought in a game plan that stayed on the ground as the three
incomplete passes by the visitors were the only passes thrown all evening,
and the Mustangs out rushed the Comets with a 262 yards to 153 yards
advantage.

The opening quarter started with the Comets grinding out a twelve play
drive that ended with an Eric Jackson fumble recovery on the Morrison
30-yard line with 3:50 remaining in the quarter. Following the recovery,
quarterback Nate Helms guided the Morrison offense by handing off to five
different backs as the quarter ended with the ball sitting on the Newman
40-yard line.

The first play of the second quarter saw Keegan Anderson skirt right end
and stopping in the end zone to open the scoring. John Winkleman added the
two-point conversion and the Mustangs were up 8-0 with only 15 seconds
elapsed in the second quarter. Newman’s ensuing drive lasted eight plays
when an incomplete fourth and five pass turned the ball over on downs at
the Morrison 35-yard line. Morrison’s next drive featured a 12-yard run by
Nick Allen and a 10-yard gain by Helms, but it ended on the Newman 30-yard
line on a failed fourth and two when Winkleman was stopped one yard short.
The Comets ran out the last 1:22 of the first half and the half closed with
a the Morrison fresh-soph holding an 8-0 lead.

The Mustang’s opening possession of the second half featured a 14- yard run
by Nathan Mickley and a 12-yarder by Anderson before Helms punted at the
6:31 mark. The Comet offense slugged out a twelve drive possession that
ended with a fourth down punt from their 41-yard line that rolled down to
the 7-yard line where Anderson picked it up and headed east. Featuring two
skilled cuts, he eluded the Comet attackers and skirted the left sideline
for a 93-yard touchdown, but unfortunately it was called back due to a
penalty for blocking in the back and the ball was placed on the Newman
15-yard line. Two quarter ending plays gained zero yardage and the ball was
moved to the other end of the field to start the fourth quarter with the
score remaining at 8-0.

The final period started with Helms being thrown for a 4-yard loss and the
Mustangs were forced to punt. Newman obtained possession on the Morrison
38-yard line and methodically marched the ball into the end zone seven
plays later, setting up the tying extra point attempt that the Mustangs
stopped one-yard short and held a slim lead at 8-6 with 6:12 remaining.

Morrison started their next possession on their own 30-yard line and moved
it to the 44-yard line when Anderson skirted end again for a 56-yard
touchdown that was capped with a Mickley two-point conversion, and the
Morrison fans were able to relax a little more with a ten point lead and
only 4:24 left in the game. Time wasn’t going to allow the time consuming
ground game to be effective so the Comets were unsuccessful on two pass
attempts before Nathan Mickley sacked quarterback Nate Ahlers for a 15-yard
loss, and the Comets were forced to punt with 3:25 on the clock. Morrison
ground out two first downs with the aid of a Winkleman 13-yard run, and the
clock expired with a well fought victory for the young Mustangs 16-6.

Anderson led all rushers with 129 yards followed by Mickley with 45 and
Allen and Smith each with 36 yards.

The fresh-soph will attempt to improve on the 4-0 record next week against
the Fulton Steamers in a Homecoming kickoff contest starting at 5:30 p.m.

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