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Hilltoppers, O’Meara run over Warriors in home football opener

GLENWOOD CITY — If you like lots of offense in a football game, then this contest was for you.

Glenwood City and Amery combined for 736 yards of total offense and 69 points in a non-conference game last Friday on the Hilltoppers’ field.

Although the final score and statistics may say otherwise, the game was never in doubt.

The Hilltoppers led from start to finish, building a 20-7 halftime advantage into a 42-13 lead with just over five minutes remaining in the August 26 game. Amery’s second unit offense scored a pair of late touchdowns on the Glenwood City reserves to make it look closer than it was as the Toppers went on to post a 42-27 victory in its home opener and improved its make to 2-0 on the young season.

The Toppers’ offense behind a solid effort from its line, amassed 401 yards including 331 yards on the ground.

“Our offensive line played a very nice game,” said Glenwood City head coach Shane Strong following the victory. “Amery is a bigger, physical team, but our kids were up to the challenge.”

Senior halfback Jacob O’Meara enjoyed gaining a bulk of those yards as he led the way with 217 yards rushing and a pair of touchdowns on 23 attempts.

Backfield mate Jacob Kopacz added three touchdowns on 13 carries for 47 yards.

The Toppers’ senior signal caller Jake Logghe tossed another touchdown and finished 4-for-7 with 70 yards.

“Jake O’Meara ran the ball very well,” stated Strong. “He was determined to get us tough yards every time he touched the ball.”

“It was also important for our quarterback to make a couple big plays to keep them honest on defense,” added the coach. “Jake Logghe was able to complete a couple of big passes when we needed them.”

The Warriors proved to be a proficient offensive team as well, particularly through the air.

Warriors’ quarterbacks Lane Christensen and Brett Forrest collect 303 of their team’s 335 yards through the air. Christensen, the Warriors senior starter hit on 16 of his 26 pass attempts for 255 yards and two touchdowns, while sophomore Brett Forrest came on late in the final quarter to led Amery to two scores as he went a perfect three-for-three for 48 yards including a fourth-and-long touchdown pass.

Defensing the opponents aerial attacks is one area Strong knows his charges need to improve upon and is confident his players will do just that.

“We have been playing very well against the run on defense,” noted Strong. “We need to improve our pass defense in order to become a complete defense. I know our boys are up for that challenge.”

Glenwood City scored quickly on its first two drives of the game. It took the Toppers just 11 plays (a four-play and a seven-play drive) coupled with a two-point conversion to jump to a 14-0 lead after the first 12 minutes of play.

After Jake Kopacz returned an Amery punt 33 yards to set up a first down at the Warriors 48, the Hilltoppers needed just four plays and less than two minutes to put their first points on the board.

Jake Nelson opened the drive with a seven-yard gain, O’Meara then ran for 13 yards which was followed by a 22-yard pass play from Logghe to Carson Strong that took Glenwood City to the Warrior six yard line. From there, Kopacz punched it into the end zone on the very next play. The conversion failed leaving the Toppers up 6-0 with 7:52 left in the first.

Three minutes later, the Toppers were back on the offensive after the defense stuffed a Warriors’ fourth-and-one rush for no gain.

Taking control at its own 35, Glenwood City needed just seven plays to puncture the end zone once more. Kopacz once again did the honors, running the ball to pay dirt from 11 yards out. This time Logghe connected with Strong on the conversion pass to make it 14-0 with just 1:21 remaining in the first quarter.

Amery would take back seven points on its next possession. Lane Christensen complete a 37-yard pass play to Seth Amundson for the touchdown at the 5:56 mark of the second period. Lance Waalen added the kick to make it 14-7.

The Toppers response – a 12-play drive that covered 65 yards and put them ahead 20-7 after Kopacz scored his third rushing touchdown of the first half, this one from two yards out. Logghe’s attempted pass to Strong for the two points was ruled incomplete and left the lead at 13 at the intermission.

Glenwood City took the second -half kick off and overcame a pair of holding calls to secure its fourth touchdown of the evening. The 10-play drive culminated in a fourth-and-12 scoring pass from Logghe to Strong at 5:42. O’Meara added the run for two to make it 28-7.

Just four plays later the GC offense was back on the grass after its defense recovered a fumble on the Amery 44. And four plays after that, Jake O’Meara was sprinting away from the Warrior defense for a 34-yard scoring run at 2:37. O’Meara went ahead and took in the conversion as well to boost the Toppers lead to 36-7.

Just 42 second into the final frame, Amery quarterback Lane Christensen sent his second touchdown pass of the night to
Tristen Collins. The score came on a fourth-and-14 situation where the Toppers’ defenders mistimed the leap and missed knocking down or intercepting the ball. The pass for two failed and it was 36-13.

Glenwood City then put together a beautiful 12-play drive for its final points of the game.

Nelson, Kopacz, O’Meara and Darian Multhauf helped hoof the Toppers down field. On a first-and-goal from the four, O’Meara scored with just 5:17 left in the game. The conversion run was stopped short but the Toppers enjoyed a 42-13 lead.

But the Warriors never gave up.

Brett Forrest took over the signal calling duties and led Amery to two final scores. Forrest ran in the first score from two yards out and after the Toppers turned the ball back over on downs, he tossed a 25 yard strike to Camden Smith with 11 seconds and then tossed a good conversion pass to make the final 42-27.

The Toppers will open conference play this Friday in Elk Mound, where the Mounders are coming off a 38-0 whipping of Eleva-Strum.

 

GLENWOOD CITY 42, AMERY 27
Amery 0     7   0    20 — 27
Glenwood City 14   6   16  6   — 42
First Quarter: GC — J. Kopacz run 6, touchdown (conversion fail), J. Kopacz run 11, touchdown (conversion good).
Second Quarter: Amery — L. Christianson pass complete to S. Amundsen 37, touchdown (conversion fail).
Third Quarter: GC — J. Logghe complete to Carson strong 12, touchdown. (conversion good), J. O’Meara run 34, touchdown (conversion good)
Fourth Quarter: Amery — L. Christensen pass complete to T. Collins 14, touchdown (conversoin fail), GC — O’Meara run 4, touchdown (conversion fail), Amery — B. Forrest run 2, touchdown (conversion fail), B. Forrest pass complete to C. Smith 25, touchdown. (conversion good).

 

TEAM STATISTICS
Rushing (att-yds) — GC — 55-331; AM — 22-32.
Passing (comp-att-yds) — GC — 4-7-70; AM — 18-29-303.
Receiving (att-rec-yds) — GC — 7-4-70; AM — 29-18-303.

 

INDIVIDUAL STATISTICS
Passing (comp-att-int-yds) — GC — J. Logghe 4-7-1-70; AM — L. Christensen 15-26-0-255; B. Forrest 3-3-0-48.
Rushing (att-yds) — GC — J. O’Meara 23-217, J. Kopacz 13-47, D. Maulthauf 5-31, J. Nelson 9-26; AM — L. Christensen 7-13, J. Baillargeon 6-10, B. Forrest 2-9.
Receiving (rec-yds) — GC — Kopacs 1-36, Strong 2-34; AM — S. Amundsen 5-96, T. Collins 4-56, L. Waalen 3-53, B. Forrest 3-50, C. Smith 2-41.