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  • Keith Hjelle

Chargers Fall to Ranked AHSTW, 36-0

When it is claimed that the ACGC Chargers showed significant improvement on Friday as compared to last week’s game at Missouri Valley and still lost by a 36-0 score, one has to consider who the opponent was. Friday night the local grid iron gang faced an Avoha/Shelby-Tenant/Walnut team that had outscored its first three opponents 112-18, with two shutouts to its credit, and is currently ranked fourth in Class IA in the state of Iowa. Every aspect of the Charger game did indeed show improvement, giving the Charger faithful renewed hope as the team prepares for next week’s game.

Charger coach Mark McDermott offered this positive statement following the game: “The coaching staff was very pleased with the effort our young men gave us tonight against the Vikings. We will get back at it on Monday and prepare for Tri-Center in hopes of winning our second road game.”

AHSTW wasted no time in taking the lead, as it scored on a 35 yard pass play from R.J Harris to Gabe Pauley just one minute into the game. The Chargers managed to pick up a first down on its initial possession, thanks to two Viking penalties and some hard running by Cole Boyer. ACGC moved the ball from its own 35 yard line to the AHSTW 45 when the drive stalled and it was forced to punt.

AHSTW put together another scoring drive, this one of of 71 yards in 7 plays, ending with a 24 yard touchdown pass from Harris to Blake Osbahr that put the Vikings up 14-0 with 4:16 remaining in the first stanza.

ACGC’s second possession resulted in a three and out and a 35 yard punt by Logan Brinks was returned by AHSTW to its own 49 yard lie. The Vikings were driving again when a fumble was recovered by the Chargers on their own 38 yard line.

The Chargers then put together their best drive of the night when they moved the ball to the AHSTW 23 yard line, using a combination of running and passing. Charger quarterback Bryce Littler completed three passes on the drive, the longest to Avery Wheatley for an eighteen yard gain. The drive stalled just outside of the red zone when a six yard rushing loss, a ten yard penalty, and a quarterback sack of eleven yards forced another Charger punt.

Had the Chargers been able to score on that drive, it could have been a 14-7 deficit at halftime. Instead the following is what occurred.

After holding the Vikings on its next possession, the ACGC offense was faced with a fourth down and four near midfield with 1:10 remaining in the first half. The Chargers elected to punt the ball away, and the ensuing kick resulted in a 73 yard punt return by Drake Partridge for a Viking touchdown with 53 seconds remaining in the half. A two point conversion gave the Vikings a 22-0 lead.

A 55 yard kickoff return by Charger Caden Wardyn excited the local crowd and put the ball on the AHSTW 20 yard line with 40 seconds to play. The Charges ran three plays, but a quarterback sack for a loss of ten yards ended the half.

After halftime the Chargers moved the ball from their own 35 yard line to the AHSTW 45 with Littler hitting Will Byers for two pass completions, but had to punt on fourth down once again. The Vikings then drove 68 yards in nine plays to score its fourth touchdown of the night with Cale Rowley going over from the 9 yard line at 4:47 of the third quarter. The PAT increased the Viking lead to 29-0.

The Chargers fumbled on their first play from scrimmage following the kickoff, and the Vikings scored a minute later, with Gage Clay scampering 40 yards for a touchdown with 3:40 remaining in the quarter. After the PAT the Vikings held a 36-0 lead.

The remainder of the game went rather quickly, as the 35 point rule was in effect, and the clock ran continuously. An ACGC drive that started on its own 20 yard line in the third quarter, and extended into the fourth, netted 56 yards to the AHSTW 24 yard line, only to stall as a result of a third down loss of ten yards and an incomplete pass on fourth down. Boyer’s 23 yards on 6 rushes and a 7 yard pass from Littler to Wardyn highlighted the drive.

AHSTW appeared that it was on its way to another touchdown, as it drove the ball from its own 34 yard line to the the Charger 10. The Charger defense stiffened and on fourth down the Vikings attempted a field goal which was blocked giving the ball back to ACGC. The Chargers ran three plays before the gun sounded ending the game, with the final score at 36-0.

The loss drops the Charger record to 1-3 overall, and 0-2 in district play. ACGC will travel to Neola to face Tri-Center next Friday, September 22 for a 7 PM kickoff. Tri-Center has a record identical to that of the Chargers, and lost to AHSTW 43-0 last week.

Line Score:

AHSTW 14 8 14 0--36

ACGC 0 0 0 0-- 0

Rushing: Cole Boyer, 15 attemps-47 yards; Bryce Littler, 3-4; Ben Kingrey, 7-4; Logan Brinks, 6-0; Devon Oberholtz, 1-1; Clayton Wardyn, 2-0

Passing: Bryce Littler, 13 attempts-7 completions-64 yards

Receiving: Will Byars, 3 receptions-26 yards; Ben Kingery, 2-9; Avery Wheatley, 1-18; Caden Wardyn, 1-12

Punts: Logan Brinks, 4 for 30.3 yard average; Quynton Younker, 1-16

Kickoffs: Quynton Younker, 1 for 44 yards

Kickoff Returns: Caden Wardyn, 2 for 43.5 yard average

Tackles, solos and assists: Cole Boyer, 4 and 8; Logan Brinks, 0 and 2; Gage Buttler, 0 and 2; Flavio Gonzalez, 0 and1; Owen Hansen, 1 and 1; Kolby Jacobe, 1 and 4; Ben Kingery, 2 and 3; Gabe Rowley; 2 and 5; Collin Stowe, 0 and 1; Caden Wardyn, 6 and 4; Avery Wheatley, 1 and 1; Quynton Younker, 2 and 2

Fumble Recoveries: Gabe Rowley, 1 for 0 yds. return

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