SOUTH WAYNE – Black Hawk had a lot to celebrate during their Homecoming festivities, and most of it was done long before the dancing started on Saturday night.
Six different players reached the end zone to buoy the Warriors over the visiting Cassville Comets, 48-0, in a Six Rivers Conference football game at Murphy Field on Saturday, Sept. 29.
The win was not only the fourth straight for Black Hawk after a 0-2 start, it also assured the Warriors a WIAA playoff berth for the third consecutive year.
“We did a pretty good job. Everybody got to play and have a good time, so it was a good win,” said Black Hawk head coach Cory Milz. “(Homecoming’s) a fun week. It’s good for the community and the school. The kids enjoy it but, in the end, it’s about taking care of your business. We needed this one for the playoffs. Now we’re in, and we can continue to build off of it.”
The Warriors (4-2 overall, 4-2 SRC) started off throwing; however, after going 0-for-3 through the air on their first drive, the Warriors switched to their running game and they took off from there.
Black Hawk ran 23 times for 214 yards in just the first half and hit pay dirt on the ground on their final four possessions of the half to build up a 27-0 lead.
Logan Stietz opened the scoring with a 15-yard TD run at the 4:04 mark of the opening quarter to put the Warriors ahead to stay, while Tanner Sweeney added a 10-yard scoring jaunt with 16 seconds remaining in the stanza to extend the lead to 13-0.
In the second quarter, quarterback Merik Meythaler raced in from 14 yards out and Sweeney tacked on a 6-yard scoring run to extend the advantage to 27-0.
Cassville (1-5, 1-5), which was held to minus-15 yards on their first five possessions of the first half, threatened to put points on the scoreboard before the intermission when quarterback Hunter Nix hit Dylan Ganahl-Johll for a 39-yard gain down to the Warrior 6-yard line.
But, on third down, Brett Lovelace picked off a Nix pass in the end zone to preserve the shutout. The Comets would run just one more play in Warrior territory the rest of the game as they were held to just 17 yards in the second half and 55 yards for the game.
“We’ve been giving up big plays every game, and that usually translates into points for our opponent. Our kids responded by not hanging their heads (after the long pass). They kept at it and held them out of the end zone,” Milz stated following the team’s second shutout this season.
Seth Butler ran one in from 14 yards out to cap the Warriors’ opening drive of the third quarter, and Kyle Walters followed with a 62-yard punt return for a score to make it 40-0 midway through the quarter.
Finally, Shawn Woodruff capped a 12-play, 85-yard march with a 10-yard TD run midway through the fourth quarter and he punched in the conversion to close the scoring at 48-0.
The Warriors finished with 324 rushing yards on 41 carries and added 79 yards on 4-of-8 passing to total 393 yards on the day.
“We ran the ball well. That was one of our goals coming into the game. The kids blocked really well. They ran the ball hard, and they executed pretty well. I’m pretty happy with that,” said Milz.
Sweeney ran 11 times for 102 yards and two TDs and he completed one pass for 43 yards to lead the Warriors. Stietz tallied 84 yards on 11 carries with a TD and Jayden Rufenacht added 67 yards on six totes for the hosts.
Meythaler completed 3-for-7 passes for 36 yards and ran four times for 26 yards and a score. Walters hauled in two catches for 52 yards and added 76 yards on punt returns.
Defensively, Woodruff led the way with 10 total tackles and Lovelace had six tackles to go along with his interception. Stietz and Tanner Schiferl combined on a sack.
The Warriors take a week off from Six Rivers competition to face North Crawford (4-2) in a non-conference game in Soldiers Grove on Friday, Oct. 5, starting at 7 p.m.
Black Hawk… 13 14 13 8 - 48
Cassville….… 0 0 0 0 - 0
BH – Logan Stietz, 15 run (kick failed)
BH – Tanner Sweeney, 10 run (Cory Rupnow kick)
BH – Merik Meythaler, 14 run (Kyle Walters pass from Meythaler)
BH – Sweeney, 6 run (kick failed)
BH – Seth Butler, 14 run (run failed)
BH – Walters, 62 punt return (Rupnow kick)
BH – Shawn Woodruff, 10 run (Woodruff run)
Team Stats: First Downs- C 3, BH 17. Rushing- C 19-8; BH 41-324. Passing- C 4-14-1, 47; BH 4-8-0, 79. Fumbles-Lost- C 1-0; BH 0-0. Penalties- C 3-15, BH 4-40.
Team Individual Leaders: Rushing (Att-Yds-Td)- Tanner Sweeney, 11-102-2; Logan Stietz, 11-84-1. Passing (Comp-Att-Int-Td-Yds)- Merik Meythaler 3-7-0-0, 36. Receiving (Cat-Yds-Td)- Kyle Walters 2-52-0.