Fast start propels Lutheran High.
LAUREL – Norfolk Lutheran High Northeast sprinted to an early 22-0 lead here Friday night before Laurel-Concord/Coleridge got things rolling.
By the time the dust settled, the Eagles needed the 22 points as LCC came back only to fall by 20 points, 62-42.
“We let the foot of the gas a little bit,” LHNE head coach Darin Suckstorf said. “Laurel-Concord/Coleridge had something to do with that, but we need to keep the pedal down all the time.”
Logan Nitz scored on the second play of the ball game from 51 yards out and with 11:11 left in the first, the Eagles were up 8-0 after Nitz ran in the conversion.
It took about three minutes later before LHNE was in the end zone again – this time from Ben Gebhardt, who hauled in a 65-yard pass from Jaxson Kant to put the Eagles up 14 -0 just over three minutes into the contest.
“We just need to believe in ourselves,” LCC coach Pat Arens said. “We are competing in every game, but we need to believe we can get the job done from the opening kickoff.”
The Eagles would score again before the first 12 minutes expired.
This time on a Kant run from the two and after Tanner Koss scampered in for the conversion, LHNE seemed to have control of the game.
The Bears mounted a resurgence late in the first frame after the LCC defense turned the ball back to its offense and scored four yards away on a pass play from Izac Reifenrath to Noah Schutte.
The duo would hook up for three more touchdowns on the night, from 29, 44 and 20 yards.
Before they would score again, Kant rambled in from 10 yards out then hit Tanner Koss for 37 yards and by the time the dust settled on the half, the Eagles were in command, 42-20.
“We are doing just fine, but the good news is we haven’t put together a complete game yet,” Suckstorf said. “We are getting to the time of the season where we need to do just that – play a complete game.”
The second half, both defenses took over.
The Eagles forced the Bears to turn the ball over on downs in LCC’s opening possession of the half.
Lutheran High took the ball at its own 24 then took off on a 56-yard scoring drive.
“If we could have earned a stop or two in the third quarter – it could have been a different game,” Arens said.
Lutheran High completed its scoring on the night early in the final 12 minutes when Marcus Echtenkamp went around the left side of the Bears’ defense and rambled in from seven yards out to make it 62-28.
LCC would score twice from there but it wasn’t enough as the Eagles improved to 5-1 while the Bears fell to 3-3.
“We are playing better and better,” Arens said. “We’ll get this figured out, start earlier than we did tonight – not taking anything away from Lutheran High – but we need to take care of what we can do and forget about the rest,”
LHNE (5-1) 22 20 6 14 – 62
LCC (3-3) 6 14 8 14 – 42
LH: Logan Nitz 51 run, Nitz run, 11:11.
LH: Ben Gebhardt 65 run, Pass failed, 8:33.
LH: Jaxson Kant 2 run, Tanner Koss run, 3:26.
LCC: Noah Schutte 4 pass from Izac Reifenrath, pass failed, 0:39.
LH: Kant 10 run, run failed, 9:51.
LCC: Reifenrath 1 run, pass failed, 8:12.
LH: Koss 37 pass from Kant, run failed, 7:14.
LCC: Schutte 29 pass from Reifenrath, 5:12.
LH: Garrett Boelter 5 run, Koss pass from Kant, 1:28.
LH: Koss 8 pass from Kant, pass failed, 7:28.
LCC: Schutte 44 pass from Reifenrath, Ty Erwin pass from Reifenrath, 2:16.
LH: Nitz 27 pass from Kant, Kant run, 0:39.
LH: Marcus Echtenkamp 7 run, run failed, 8:19.
LCC: Reifenrath 6 run, pass failed, 6:11.
LCC: Schutte 20 pass from Reifenrath, Dylan Reimers pass from Reifenrath, 1:10.