Jonathan Alder head football coach Brett Glass knew going into Friday evening’s game that Urbana’s gridders have struggled so far this season.
What he didn’t know was how well his unbeaten Pioneers would react to the Hillclimbers’ option offense.
“It’s something we don’t see a lot of,” said Glass. “However, our guys defended it well.”
No full statistical numbers were available for either team, but it is a good guess to say the Pioneers (4-0) limited the 0-4 Hillclimbers to approximately 100 yards in total offense.
On the other hand, Alder was able to employ its infantry attack at will.
Garret Proximire led the attack with 202 yards on 20 carries. He also scored three touchdowns.
“We ran the ball pretty well and didn’t have to throw it very much,” said Glass.
JA quarterback J.T. Keith was unofficially four-of-seven passing for 42 yards and one touchdown.
The Pioneers (who will host North Union for Homecoming on Friday) had to punt on their first series.
Alder, though, regained possession when Denver Petersheim recovered an Urbana fumble.
That set up JA at the Urbana 32-yard-line.
Proxmire made short work of the possession when he raced into the end zone on the first snap.
Dylan Moore’s extra point gave Jonathan Alder a 7-0 lead.
The Pioneer defense stymied Urbana and forced a punt.
Alder took over on its own 27 and needed just four plays to score.
Proxmire concluded the quick series with a 48-yard run.
Moore’s conversion pushed JA out to a 14-0 margin.
The Hillclimbers maintained possession as action moved into the second quarter.
Urbana cut Alder’s lead in half with a 25-yard scoring run by Trevor Stewart.
Ashleigh Deskins’ extra point made the score 14-7.
The Pioneers took the game over at that point.
Proxmire ground out a lot of yardage before Keith took the ball and sprinted to his left.
His pass found Crew Wheeler in the end zone from 12 yards out.
Moore’s extra point stretched the lead to 21-7.
Another Urbana punt led to the Pioneers’ next score.
Proxmire did the heavy lifting on the ground before a pass from Keith to Wheeler put the ball on the Urbana three-yard-line.
Proxmire took the next snap into the end zone.
Moore’s extra point sent JA into the turn with a 28-7 advantage.
The Hillclimbers went three-and-out to begin the third quarter.
JA took over on the Urbana 47 and needed just four plays to extend its lead.
Proxmire scored on a six-yard run and Moore booted the extra point that gave Alder a comfortable 35-7 spread.
Many of JA’s reserve players began to filter into the lineup by the time the team regained possession.
Will Heisler scored on a 10-yard run and Moore’s conversion increased the Pioneers’ lead to 42-7.
Backup quarterback Taber Headings engineered Alder’s final scoring drive of the night with just a little more than a minute remaining in the third period.
He rifled a 30-yard pass that Johnny Kaltenbach caught in the left corner of the end zone.
This time, Jackie Santa-Emma, a former Alder soccer player, was summoned for the extra point.
His kick sent JA into the final set with a commanding 49-7 lead.
Urbana scored a touchdown with 3:43 left in the game on a one-yard run by Rayvon Rogan.
Deskins ended the evening’s scoring with the extra point.
Glass will attempt to keep his team unbeaten next week as the 2019 regular season reaches its midway point.
He knows, however, it won’t be easy.
“North Union is a dangerous team,” he said. “They’ve got great players and coaches.
“I have a lot of respect for them.”
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