Many ACGC football fans wore white T-shirts at last night's game in Greenfield with the Charger emblem on the front and the words "Live in the Shadows" printed on the back. Curious about the meaning of the slogan, I approached two fans wearing the T-shirts and asked what the words meant. They explained that it means that nobody notices the ACGC team and that its OK with the Charger faithful because it makes it possible to sneak up on unsuspecting opponents. A clever little slogan--one which may have been true through the first three Charger victories over IKM-M, Woodward Academy and last night's opponent--Nodaway Valley.
However, its unlikely that the Chargers are going to sneak up on anyone from this point onwards since the team pummeled Nodaway Valley 54-0 last night and demolished the Wolverine passing attack. There was considerable concern about NV's passing game, especially after Woodward Academy scored four passing touchdowns against the Charger defense last week. Wolverine Quarterback Nathan Russell had averaged nearly forty pass attempts per game for over seven hundred yards and nine touchdowns in NV's first three games.
After a week long emphasis on pass defense, the Chargers held the Wolverines to three pass completions in seventeen attempts that included three ACGC interceptions. Following the game Charger mentor Cody Matthewson commented on his team's efforts in practice last week. "I would like to say that the kids did a great job of taking what we worked on all week and then applying it to the game. The term best used is "drill carryover." We had a heavy emphasis on open field tacking, our pass drops, and defensive line pass/run reads."
A large Charger following, including a boisterous student section, saw the Chargers take it to NV from the get go. The Chargers scored four touchdowns in the first quarter to take a commanding 32-0 lead after the first fifteen minutes of the game. After a three and out for the home team to start the game, ACGC put together a sixty five yard drive that culminated with a two yard score by Gavin Cornelison with 8:46 remaining in the first stanza. Charlie Crawford followed that up with a forty eight yard interception return at the 7:58 mark. Charger QB Bryce Littler then hooked up with Lucas Marsh for six points with just under five minutes left in the quarter. The final TD of the quarter was by Kolby Jacobe on a five yard run with three and a half minutes left. Game over!
The Chargers added two scores in the second quarter when Jacobe scored on a three yard run at the 8:29 mark and tallied his third touchdown of the day with 5:42 remaining in the half on a three yard plunge. By now ACGC led 48-0 over a demoralized Wolverine team.
After a scoreless third quarter, Charger reserves played the fourth quarter and had one score to their credit. After holding NV on downs, ACGC moved the ball from the Wolverine twenty five yard line to pay dirt. Reid Rumelhart logged most of the carries, including a one yard TD run with 5:39 remaining in the game. Final: ACGC 54, Nodaway Valley 0. The shutout by the Chargers is the first by an ACGC team in its four year history.
The Chargers racked up 337 yards on the ground, with both Cornelison and Jacobe going over the one hundred yard mark with 135 and 109 yards respectively. Littler recorded his first scoring pass completions of the season--both to Marsh on a touchdown and a two point conversion.
The big and noisy Charger crowd caught the attention of Matthewson. "One thing I want to mention is how well we traveled. I usually don't hear the crowd and usually tune it out. But our student body and support from the Charger Nation was phenomenal. The coaching staff, players, and I especially are so thankful to have the support from our fans." Well said coach!
The Charger opponents get progressively tougher over the next two weeks. Tri Center is up next for ACGC in a home game for the Chargers. The Trojans are 2-1 on the season following last night's 49-33 loss to Underwood in a battle between ranked teams. The most recent DM Register poll has Underwood ranked eighth in class 1A, while Tri-Center was in the number eight spot in class A. Following the Tri-Center matchup, the Chargers will begin district play at Van Meter, ranked third in class 1A. So, fasten your seat belts folks, as we will finally solve the mystery of how good this Charger team is. Go Chargers!
Score by quarter:
ACGC 32 16 0 6--54
NodVal 0 0 0 0-- 0
Passing: Bryce Littler: 4 attempts for 1 completion of 30 yards and a TD
Rushing: Gavin Cornelison: 21 attempts for 135 yards and 3 TDs; Charlie Crawford: (6-14-0);
Jacob Fox: (1-3-0); Kolby Jacobe: (10-109-1); Gunnar Larsen: (3-25-0); Brock Littler: (1-3-0);
Bryce Littler: (4-5-0); Ben Marsh: (1-5-0); Seth Reno: (3-19-0); Reid Rumelhart: (7-20-1)
Receiving: Lucas Marsh: 1 recetion for 30 yards and 1 TD
Tackles: Giffen Ayers: 0 solo, 1 assist; Gage Buttler (1-1); Gavin Cornelison: (1-8); Charlie Crawford: (0-1); Victor Gonzalez: (1-0); Kolby Jacobe: (1-3); Cayden Jensen: (1-1); Bryce Littler: (2-2); Ben Marsh: (1-0); Lucas Marsh: (1-0); Dawson Muller: (0-1); Christian Nolte:
(0-3); Clayton Wardyn: (1-0); Nolan Wheatley: (0-4); Quynton Younker: (2-3)
Interceptions: Gavin Cornelison: 1 for 40 yards and 0 touchdowns; Charlie Crawford: (1-48-1); Bryce Littler: (1-4-0)
Kickoffs: Charlie Crawford: 7 for average of 44 yards and two touchbacks
Punting: Kolby Jacobe: 1 for 40 yards