COLFAX — Coming off a tough conference loss to Elk Mound a week ago, the Glenwood City football team used some big plays to keep the Colfax team in check and took a 43-12 road win on Friday, September 11.
The win gives the Hilltoppers a 3-1 record and a 1-1 conference record.
Glenwood City scored on its first possession as Jacob Kopacz took the kickoff to the Topper 46, and on first down, Jacob Nelson ripped off a 40 yard run. After Nate Mrdutt gained four yards, he got the call again and took it in to the end zone from 14 yards out for the score. While attempting the extra point kick, Colfax was called for a penalty and the Toppers decided to run the ball instead and added two points for an 8-0 lead at the 10:35 mark of the opening quarter.
Colfax then went three and out on its first possession with Kopacz breaking up a third down pass.
After their punt, the Vikings defense held their ground and forced a Glenwood City punt after three plays, and following a long return to the Topper 28, Colfax used the talents of some players who didn’t play in their first three games to move the ball.
Kedar Davis gained a first down on a 20 yard pass completion from Jarrod Rudi but Nelson and Quinn Taylor shut down two running plays and another incomplete pass on fourth down gave them the ball back at the Toppers’ own 11.
A long pass completion was nullified when a penalty was called for sideline interference on Glenwood City, but on first and 10 from the Vikings’ 45, Topper quarterback Nick Schone found a wide open Carson Strong for a scoring strike. The extra point kick was missed but it was a 14-0 lead with 1:58 left in the quarter.
The teams traded possessions with the Vikings punting after a pair of penalties moved them backwards, but the Toppers, after an eight-yard and a 13-yard run by Nelson, had their drive stalled on two incomplete passes and no gain on a fourth down.
Colfax started a drive from its own 29 and with a 30-yard run by Aliymu Davis in which he broke several tackles and with the ball in hi hands and he rattled off runs of 14, 3 and 14 yards for a first down. Colfax went to the air and an 18-yard pass to K. Davis brought the ball to the Topper 20.
Rudi connected with Davis again but as he was getting tackled on the three-yard line, he fumbled and an alert Topper recovered the fumble to stop the drive.
With the ball on their own three, the Hilltoppers’ Jake Nelson ran for eight yards and lightning struck in the name of Jacob Kopacz as he found an opening on the left side and zipped down the field for an 89 yard TD. The kick was missed, making it 20-0 with 3:34 left in the half.
“That was a huge turnaround on some big plays for us,” Toppers’ head coach Shane Strong said. “To force a fumble, recover it, and get ourselves out of the hole on that long run really gave the momentum back to us.”
But the Vikings, who were trounced in their first three games, didn’t lay down and after moving the ball from their own 35 to the Toppers’ 33, Rudi found K. Davis for a 33-yard TD pass with 1:20 to go in the half. The two-point run was stuffed to make it 20-6.
After the kickoff return, Kopacz snared a pass and broke three tackles to get the ball to the Colfax 14, and looking for more points, they moved the ball to the three. But with no timeouts and 30 seconds left, they ran three plays and couldn’t punch it in, ending the half.
“I talked to our players at halftime about tackling better,” Strong said. “But we kept to our game plan pretty well and were having success.”
Colfax, feeling like they were still in the game, took the opening kickoff to their own 40 and drove to the Topper 24. But a broken pass pattern by the Colfax receiver resulted in a ball thrown into a sea of white and blue and Jake O’Meara picked it off to stop another drive.
Six plays later, Schone took it in for a 10 yard score and Nelson ran in the conversion for a 28-6 advantage.
“That was another great response from us,” Strong said. “Taking advantage of another turnover and getting points was another momentum changer.”
Glenwood City added more points four minutes later after Schone picked up a first down on third and seven with a 21-yard run and O’Meara took it in from nine yards out. A two point run made it 36-6 with 1:19 left in the third quarter.
Colfax finished their scoring when A. Davis zipped for a 23-yard run and brother K. Davis caught an eight yard pass, then A. Davis scored from 12 yards out for a 36-12 score.
The Toppers had their fifth different player tack on their final points with Nelson racing for 52 yards down the left side for the score and a Schone kick made it 43-12 with 9:09 left in the contest.
The Toppers’ defense then followed up with three quarterback sacks and Colfax punted on fourth and 25.
Both teams then allowed their reserves to play the last couple of minutes of the game.
“Wow, Colfax has a couple of kids who are very athletic,” Strong said. “We had a hard time containing number 1 and 4 (the Davis brothers). Their defense was committed to stopping our run in the second half so we ran a lot of play action and made some big plays off of it.”
Glenwood City, who finished with 537 yards of offense, rolled up 360 yards on the ground by seven different players with Kopacz leading the way with 132 on just six carries. Nelson added 122 on eight attempts and Schone added 47 on three runs.
Schone completed 5 of 7 passes for 132 yards with Strong snaring three and Marcus Ullom two. Jake Logghe also completed his only pass attempt for 45 yards.
Glenwood City returns home this Friday to host Mondovi in the annual Homecoming game.