Tonight was the kickoff to the 2018 season. Du-Pec and Forreston both entered this contest wanting to prove something for the season, and both teams did just that, however it was Forreston who came out on top with a 30-6 win. Forreston was out to prove they are still a top team in the NUIC Northwest, while Du-Pec wanted to show how far they have come entering year 2 of their co-op.
Forreston (1-0) entered the game as the #6 ranked team in Class 1A, and made quick work on their opening drive, chewing up 6:09 off the clock when Austin Mitchell punched it in from 13 yards out to give the Cardinals an early 6-0 lead. The 2 point conversion would fail.
Du-Pec (0-1) would answer right back on their next drive, driving the ball 57 yards in 3:03, finishing the drive with a Mason Manning QB dive for a 1 yard TD run. The extra point would miss, keeping the score tied at 6 all. At the half, Forreston held the yardage advantage 142-57.
The game would remain tied through halftime, but in the 3rd quarter the Cardinals would find life. Starting at their own 42 yard line, the Cards would drive 58 yards in 3:58 ending with a big 26 yard run by Garett Badertscher, as he rumbled up the middle bulldozing through several tacklers on his way to the end zone. He would double up on the 2 point try and extend the Cardinal lead to 14-6 with 8:03 to go in the 3rd.
After a couple of possession exchanges, Forreston would go back on the offense with 2:59 remaining in the 3rd, and just 34 seconds into the 4th quarter they would reach paydirt again, this time on a Bailey Cullor keeper from 4 yards out. Gabe Owens would tack on the 2 point conversion to extend the Cardinal lead to 22-6 with 11:26 remaining in the game.
After a quick 3 and out, the Forreston offense was back on the field. Starting from their own 33 yard line, the drive would be powered by Dom Christensen, as the junior ripped off solid gains one right after another, moving the Cardinals into Du-Pec territory. A few plays later, Cullor would reach the end zone again, this time from 8 yards out. Badertscher would tack on the 2 point conversion to give Forreston the 30-6 lead, which would become the final.
Forreston out gained the Rivermen 329 yards to 102 yards on the night, while the Cardinals rushed for 321 yards on 64 attempts. The Cards featured 7 different runners in their rushing attack, but were led by Garett Badertscher's game high 69 yards on 13 carries. Dom Christensen rushed the ball 14 times for 68 yards, while Ethan Mulder added 48 yards on 12 carries. Bailey Cullor went 1-5 passing for 8 yards, but chipped in 22 yards rushing on 4 carries to go with his 2 TD runs.
Du-Pec was led offensively by Griffin Mulcahy, who had 9 carries for 54 yards. Caden Manning pitched in 37 yards on 18 carries, while Mason Manning had the lone Du-Pec TD. Mason Manning was 8-9 passing for 21 yards and 1 INT.
Forreston (1-0) @ Le-Win (1-0)
Du-Pec (0-1) vs West Carroll (0-1)