North Linn visited the Maquoketa Valley Wildcats Sept. 6 and left with a 40-0 non-district win, moving the Wildcats to 0-2 for the season.
It took a slim two minutes for the Lynx to score their first touchdown, a 6-yard scamper from quarterback Austin Miller. Heath Moyer converted the extra point for a7-0 lead. After trading punts with the Wildcats despite an 11-yard gain on first down by Zach Digman, the Lynx came back with a seven-play drive capped by another Miller run, this time 15 yards, and a 13-0 lead when the kick missed.
The Wildcats gained 14 on their next first down, but stalled with a series of penalties, turning the ball over to the Lynx who needed just six plays for Miller to find Austin Hilmer for a 32-yard score, the first of the second quarter. Holding the Wildcats to a three-and-out, the Lynx got a 62-yard completion from Miller-to-Hilmer for their next tally, 26-0. They scored again, with eight seconds to go in the half, on a pass to Cade Haughenbury to lead 33-0 at the break.
Just three minutes into the second half, the Lynx took advantage of a Wildcat fumble to score their last touchdown and set the continuous clock rambling. It was a short run by Colton Bach.
The Wildcats then ran their best series of the game, gaining 50 yards on 12 plays before ending at the 12 with an incomplete pass. They had one more extended series left in them before the game ended, from their own 13 to the Lynx 41, before the clock expired.
Coach Trevor Arnold commented, “From the start, we couldn’t get out of our own way. When you combine that with playing a solid opponent who can take advantage of miscues, the result will be what it was.
“We had several plays on offense where we got chunks of yardage but almost always followed a positive with a negative play or penalty. We were our own worst enemy offensively. That made it tough on our defense because we never had the ball for a substantial amount of time and that caused our defense to be on the field a lot more than it should have been.
“Trent Koopmann stood out on both sides of the ball and seemed to be all over the field defensively, with 13 tackles.
“We are going to get back to the basics and improve the details of our game so we can head to Cascade Friday to compete with a tough team who is also hungry for their first win. Effort, attitude and toughness will be the deciding factors for us Friday night.”
MV’s leaders were: rushing — Digman 13-for-50, Trent Koopmann 3-for-24, Parker Sternhagen 10-for-13 and Andrew Kloser 1-for-3; passing — Sternhagen completed 11-of-21 for 143, and one interception; receiving — Koopmann 5-for-62, Kloser 3-for-39, Owen Mensen 2-for-30 and AJ Ambundo 1-for-12. Ambundo returned two punts for 51 yards and five kick-off returns for 82.
Tackle numbers included Koopmann with 13, Kloser 4.5, Mensen four, Tim Harmon three, Digman and Jaxson Kramer two, Emma Beitz, Carter Stahlberg and Sternhagen 1.5, Andrew Holtz and Ambundo one.