Cougars air it out, struggle on the ground in grid loss
By Suzanne Werre
The New Salem Holsteins used the ground game to and a couple big plays to knock off the home-standing Central McLean Cougars in Monday night’s storm-postponed 11-man football game in Turtle Lake.
The Holsteins were already up 15-0 in the first quarter when New Salem’s Spencer Rebel picked up a Cougar fumble and rumbled into the end-zone for a score on the turnover. The following PAT kick gave the Holsteins a 20-0 lead, and they would never trail.
The Holsteins added a little punctuation to that lead early the second quarter when John Duppong cruised his way 94 yards for the score for the Holsteins. That would be one of only two carries Duppong would have during the game, as he rushed for a total of 103 yards on two carries.
While New Salem found success, scoring six of its touchdowns with the running game, the Cougars went to the air to pick up their yards.
Cougar Hunter Jacobs was good for 11 of 19 passes for 96 yards in the air, completing the lion’s share to Kyle Bott. Bott hauled in five receptions for 68 yards to pace the Cougar offense, while Tanner Freeman was good for two catches and 16 yards.
"We did some things that we wanted to through the air last night," commented Cougar co-coach Kurt Ziebarth. "We knew going into the game that we were going to have to go to the air against
"This was the first full game with Kyle being able to play a role in, and he did a great job of getting open," added Ziebarth. "We still haven’t found the success on the ground that we need."
The Cougars indeed struggled to get their ground game going as they picked up just seven rushing yards for the game.
Defensively, it was Bott who again led the Cougars, piling up six solo tackles and two assists. Zack Cottingham was good for four solos.