Kory Stevens scored four touchdowns and rushed for 232 yards as the Richland Center Hornets trounced the Mauston Golden Eagles, 33-0, in non-conference football action at Mauston Friday night.
Stevens ran for three touchdowns and turned a pass reception into another as the Hornets gave first-year head coach Greg Schoepp his first win.
John Hassell also ran for a touchdown, and Todd Wienkes ran for a conversion and kicked another as the Hornets improved to 1-3.
“I told them to celebrate the win but wake up and focus on Platteville,” said Schoepp.
“We played a pretty complete game,” said coach Schoepp. “We ran the ball better. Kory (Stevens) was very effective. He runs hard, but we also blocked better up front. We threw the ball better when we had to, and we cut down on our turnovers. Our special teams were pretty good, but I was real proud of our defense. I felt the defense stepped up and stopped Mauston three times on downs – twice after they got inside our 10.”
It was a defense which came away with four turnovers. Evan Ewing recovered a fumble and grabbed an interception. Darren Mott pounced on a fumble, and Sam Helmuth came away with a pick.
Stevens scored on runs of 58, 37, and 47 yards and a caught an 11-yard TD pass from Wienkes. Hassell bolted 11 yards for the Hornets’ final touchdown, which ended a string of six consecutive touchdowns for Stevens over two games.
The Hornets took a 6-0 lead when Stevens bolted up the middle and streaked 58 yards to the end zone on the Hornets’ second possession. The conversion failed when Wienkes was stopped by the Golden Eagles.
The Hornets kept the lead despite not getting a first down until late in the second quarter. Mauston dominated possession and twice drove into Hornet territory before surrendering the ball. Helmuth’s fourth down interception stopped an 11-play drive at the RC seven, and fumbles on back-to-back plays which the Eagles themselves recovered as well as a sack by Josh Jones thwarted another threat.
Late in the second quarter, the Hornets’ offense started to roll. Wienkes completed a key third down pass to Anthony Rider for 17 yards for a first down. Then on a fourth and one, he sneaked for another. Two plays later, Stevens found a crack in the Eagles’ defense and raced 37 yards with 1:21 left. Wienkes scrambled for the conversion which gave the Hornets a 14-0 halftime lead. It was a nine play drive covering 72 yards.
In the third quarter, the Hornets picked up where they left off. Following a short punt, the Hornets produced their second one-play scoring drive. Stevens roared up the middle on a 47-yard scoring jaunt with 10:22 left, but the attempted two-point conversion failed.
And after stopping Mauston, three-and-out, the Hornets marched 50 yards for another score. A 10-play march featured a 13-yard burst by Stevens on a fourth-and-two play. After getting a first down at the Mauston seven, Wienkes was sacked at the 11. On third down he flipped a short pass Stevens who cut behind a key block from Denzel Connor to reach the end zone. Wienkes’ attempted conversion sailed wide as the Hornets’ held a 26-0 lead with 3:26 left in the third quarter.
When the Hornets regained possession at midfield, they threatened again as Wienkes first threw to Rider and then to sophomore Alex Mortimer. However, they were denied when Kyle Jirousek recovered a Hornet fumble. The Eagles were stopped when Logan Schmidt’s hit led to a fumble recovery by Mott, but the Hornets were stopped when Teague Fenwick picked off a Wienkes pass. The Eagles reached the Hornets’ five before three straight incomplete passes gave the ball back to the Hornets.
They went 95 yards on seven plays. Stevens accounted for 51 yards on three carries before Hassell coverd the final 10. Wienkes, who was kicking in place of injured Lance Cook, booted the conversion.
“I hope we can build on this win,” said Schoepp, whose team now starts SWC play against a potent Platteville team. The Hillmen are 4-0 and feature quarterback Logan Emendorfer, versatile David Bast, and the running of Brian Jack as well as big line which includes 279-pound Rhett Weber.
“We’re going to have to play error-free football and stay disciplined,” said Schoepp.
In other action, Platteville blanked Wisconsin Dells, 41-0, as Emendorfer threw two TD passes and ran for another.
Wautoma scored 28 points in the second half to overwhelm River Valley, 56-27. Johnny Eagan ran for three touchdowns and passed for another.
Lancaster watched Nekoosa rally from a 35-14 deficit to pull within 35-34 before pulling away for a 50-34 win.
Dodgeville thumped Adams-Friendship, 36-6, and Prairie du Chien outscored Westfield, 46-26.
Dodgeville will go to Prairie du Chien this Friday night, and Lancaster will travel to River Valley.