IOWA FALLS - West Marshall used a little razzle-dazzle and a lot of Duncan Ferch to edge Iowa Falls-Alden in Friday's Week Zero football opener.
The Trojans scored on a toss sweep that turned into a lateral-happy, 59-yard run and touchdown credited to Devin Chesler as time expired on the first half, and Ferch's third rushing touchdown of the night with 5:59 left put West Marshall in front to stay, 35-34.
Ferch finished with 26 carries for 173 yards and three touchdowns, adding a 95-yard kickoff return for another score for the Trojans.
The win was head coach Ken Winkler's 200th at West Marshall and his 302nd career victory, coming on the same night that Jerry Pezzetti picked up his 300th win with Ankeny and 358th overall.
Leading 14-13 with time running out in the second quarter, West Marshall went with a toss sweep to Ferch. But he eventually lateraled the ball to Garrett Goodwin, who in turn pitched it to Chesler, and the play covered 59 yards for a 21-13 Trojan lead at the half.
"They just did that on their own, we didn't practice it or anything," said Winkler. "It was just a spur of the moment thing and it worked."
Gustavo Rodriguez made all five of his extra-point kicks, the last of which provided the final margin of victory for West Marshall (1-0). Ferch scored on an 11-yard run with just under 6 minutes remaining, and the Trojans got a stop on defense and ran out the clock.
Quarterback Jake Pszanka finished 2-for-6 passing for 49 yards, with Chesler catching one ball for 35 yards and Justin Weitzell hauling in another for 14 yards.
Chesler led the Trojan defense with 11 tackles, Bailey Brockman had nine, while Goodman and Ferch both had eight.
Bryton Tichy had touchdown runs of 3 and 1 yards to lead Iowa Falls-Alden (0-1).
West Marshall will play its home opener next Friday night, hosting Waterloo Columbus in non-district action.