The Clear Lake Lions cemented yet another District football title Friday night. The Lions (8-0, 5-0) rolled past hapless Iowa Falls-Alden, 41-0, to clinch the District title and assure themselves of a number one seed in next week’s playoffs.
The Cadets came out with a bang, taking the opening kickoff at the five and racing into Clear Lake territory. Unfortunately for IF-A, that was their one and only bright spot in the game. Clear Lake’s Chandler Diercks caught up with the Cadets’ Jared Marquis at the Lion three-yard-line and knocked the ball loose. Alex Gonzalez scooped it up in the endzone and returned it to the 31.
On their first play from scrimmage Diercks was again key. He ran for 27-yards and sparked a nine-play, 67-yard drive for the Lions’ first score. Pete Swenson took the ball into the endzone and Logan Kracht kicked the first of his five PATs for a 7-0 Clear Lake lead.
As if there hadn’t been enough surprises early, the Lions used an on-side on their first kick-off. Diercks was there again, this time recovering the kick and giving the Lions the ball on the 41. Eight plays and 65-yards later Clear Lake pushed the score to 14-0.
The Cadets finally got their hands on the ball for their first drive almost eight minutes into the game, but the Clear Lake defense was too much and they turned it over on downs. The Lion offense made quick work of their possession, scoring on a one-yard run by Pete Swenson, 21-0.
The second quarter was more of the same, as Clear Lake had scoring drives of 52, 66 and 10 to make it 41-0. The first two scores came on passes to Jack Abbas and Alex Webb. Brock Adams connected with Webb for a 66-yard TD, the longest of the season. Carter Hand also ran the ball in for a score.
Adams finished the night with 7/11 passing for 257-yards. The Lions also had 269-yards on the ground, led by Diercks with 79 on seven carries. Swenson collected 56-yards on nine totes and Adams had 44-yards on four rushes. Hand carried eight times for 34-yards and Gonzalez finished with 30-yards on four carries.
Sophomores Carter Garrington and Jared Anderson have been moved into the varsity line-up due to injuries to Dustin King and Chase Lester. Lester underwent surgery Friday for a season-ending broken ankle. Garrington carried the ball once Friday for 15-yards. Anderson ran the ball twice and picked up nine-yards.
Coach Fred Wieck noted Garrington and Anderson, along with a number of his reserves, picked up valuable playing time in the second half against the Cadets.
“I’m proud of the kids. Everyone got to play and we won, 41-0. Got to be happy with that,” said Wieck.
The combinations of players on the field also had the coach using formations he has not implemented in years he said, making the most of size and speed.
Eighteen players got their names into the book for defensive tackles. Mitchell Keeran and Tim Franken led the way, each getting one solo tackle and five assists. Connor Nosbisch had three solo takedowns and two assists, while Diercks, MaKean Bang, Tamarik Lee, Hunter Wubben and Zachary Zwiefel had four tackles apiece.
The Lions will be looking to end the regular season with a perfect record when they travel to Algona Friday.
The first round of play-offs for all classes begins Wednesday, Oct. 30, at 7 p.m. The pairings will be announced following the completion of Friday’s games.