E’Hawk Sophomores Finish Perfect Season
The 2009 football campaign closed out in late October with a pair of victories for Coach Dave Fog and the Emmetsburg E’Hawk Sophomore football team. With wins over Algona and Estherville Lincoln Central, the E’Hawk sophomores closed out their campaign with a perfect 7-0 record on the season.
Against the Bulldogs of Algona, Emmetsburg collected a 52-6 victory for their sixth win of the season. The young E’Hawks kicked off to the Bulldogs, who put together a drive, only to see the drive stall in the face of the E’Hawk defense at the Emmetsburg 31 yard line. The E’Hawks took over and on the first play from scrimmage Alex Hammerlink took a handoff from quarterback Ryan Kliegl and picked his way through the Algona defense for a 69 yard touchdown run. Hammerlink would run in his own conversion to give Emmetsburg an 8-0 lead.
After holding the Bulldogs to three downs and a punt, the E’Hawks took over and ground their way downfield to score when tailback Marcus Akridge bulled his way into the end zone from two yards out. Alex Hammerlink would add the conversion run for a 16-0 lead at the end of the first quarter.
Algona would start the second frame by stringing together several first downs for a drive, but were stopped cold again by the E’Hawk defense. When Emmetsburg got the ball back, it didn’t take long for the E’Hawks to strike, as Akridge would break loose on a 43 yard run for a score, and would add his own conversion for a 24-0 lead.
Algona would take over after the score, and looked to be in dire straits once again, but a faked punt allowed the Bulldogs to gain a first down to keep a drive alive that would finally pay off with a short touchdown run. The conversion attempt was snuffed out by the E’Hawks to make the score 24-6.
Emmetsburg would take the ball after the Bulldog score, and ground their way downfield as the clock ticked down. With just under 1:00 to go in the half, Emmetsburg went to the air. Ryan Kliegl put the ball up and hit Justin Studer with a 57 yard pass. The completion set up a 34 yard run by Jake Carlson down to the Bulldogs’ 17 yard line. A desperation pass fell incomplete, but on the final snap of the half, Kliegl hit the tight end, Carlson, with a 17 yard heave for the score with :04 to go. The conversion would fail, giving Emmetsburg the 30-6 lead at the intermission.
Emmetsburg opened the third quarter with a slow, time consuming drive after receiving the kickoff. The drive would come to fruition off a five yard run by Hammerlink , and Kliegl would run in the conversion for a 38-6 lead.
Algona’s resulting possession would be short-lived, as Marcus Akridge intercepted a pass and returned it to Algona’s 15 yard line. Two plays later, Ryan Kliegl ran into the end zone for the score, and Akridge added the conversion for a 46-6 tally that would hold to the end of the third frame.
The E’Hawks would make the final noise of the game in the fourth quarter, when Studer took over the rushing game and scored on an 18 yard run for the final touchdown. The conversion failed, giving the E’Hawks the 52-6 final tally.
Emmetsburg was led by Alex Hammerlink with 124 yards rushing off 11 carries, while Marcus Akridge added 129 yards on 13 rushes. Ryan Kliegl came up with 53 yards on four attempts, and completed three of five passes for 83 yards. Justin Studer gained 36 yards off four rushes and Tony Henson had 13 yards on three carries.
Defensively, Marcus Akridge, Tyler Thornbury, Arik Kerr, Andrew Garrelts and Jake Carlson all had solid games for the E’Hawks.
The season finale’ came with the E’Hawks meeting Estherville Lincoln Central and claiming a 44-6 victory over the Midgets for the perfect season and 7-0 mark.
Emmetsburg kicked off to the Midgets, and promptly held ELC to three downs and a punt. Emmetsburg took over and Marcus Akridge broke loose for a 43 yard touchdown run. Ryan Kliegl added the conversion run for an 8-0 early lead the E’Hawks would never relinquish.
After another defensive stand, the E’Hawks got the ball back and put together another nice drive, capping the possession off with a nine yard run by Alex Hammerlink, only to have the conversion fail for a 14-0 lead at the end of the first quarter.
The E’Hawks ran afoul of the officials in the second quarter, being whistled for several holding penalties that put the E’Hawks in a hole. But, after the drive almost stalled out, Marcus Akridge managed to break loose and run 59 yards for a score. Jake Carlson ran in the conversion for a 22-0 lead over the Midgets.
Estherville Lincoln Central took over and mounted a nice drive that pushed into the E’Hawks’ red zone, but a determined goal line stand by the E’Hawks at their own two yard line on first-and-goal kept the Midgets out of the end zone on all four downs to end the half with Emmetsburg holding the 22-0 advantage.
Emmetsburg ran into holding troubles to start the second half, getting rung up on three straight holding calls that would set up a third down and 40 yards to go. ELC’s defense picked off the third down pass and scored two plays later, but couldn’t convert the PAT try, making the score 22-6.
Emmetsburg would shake off the bad start to the half with a drive of nearly 80 yards after the Midgets’ score. Starting near their own 20, Emmetsburg pounded the Midget defense with the running of Marcus Akridge and the solid blocking of the E’Hawk line, Jake Carlson, Arik Kerr, Andrew Garrelts, Jake Hutchison, Blaine Tindall and Garth Wolff. The combination would drive the length of the field, and Akridge scored off a five yard run and then ran in the conversion for a 30-6 lead.
ELC took over, but fumbled the ball and Emmetsburg recovered deep in the Midgets’ territory. It didn’t take long for Alex Hammerlink to score off a two yard run, and Kliegl added the conversion for a 38-6 lead to end the third quarter.
The two teams would trade possessions in the final quarter, but the E’Hawks would come up with a final score as they faced a fourth and 18. Ryan Kliegl dropped back and found Justin Studer with a 35 yard strike for the final touchdown of the contest. The conversion would come up short, making the final score 44-6 in favor of the E’Hawks.
Marcus Akridge would lead the offense with 231 yards rushing on 23 attempts, while Alex Hammerlink added 85 yards off 18 carries and Ryan Kliegl gained 83 yards off 11 carries. Tony Henson added 14 yards off two rushes in the effort. Ryan Kliegl completed four of seven passes for 62 yards and on defense, Marcus Akridge led the way with 14 tackles, a fumble recovery and a pass interception, while Jake Carlson added eight tackles to the effort to cap off the perfect season.