TRAER - Different opponent, same result.
Forcing five turnovers and racing to a 27-0 halftime lead, the No. 5 Redhawks (10-1) cruised to another commanding victory in knocking off Starmont 35-12 in a Class A second-round playoff game Monday at Dennis Athletic Field.
"It was a whole team effort offensively and defensively. Not one player or side of the football can be singled out, it was a whole team effort from start to finish," said North Tama coach Dan Oltman.
T-R PHOTO BY TYLER STRAND
North Tama’s Skyler Kvidera (65), Nolan Hefty (71) and Damon Spencer (14) pursue Starmont ball carrier Alan Hayes. The Redhawk defense forced five turnovers on the night, including a fumble recovery from Kvidera and an interception from Hefty, in North Tama’s 35-12 victory in the second round of Class A state playoff action in Traer.
Riding a nine-game win streak, North Tama advances to face second-ranked Wapsie Valley (11-0) in a quarterfinal matchup at Fairbank on Friday at 7 p.m. The Warriors posted a 48-20 victory over Gladbrook-Reinbeck (6-5) Monday.
Completing his first eight passes, Jacob Wrage tossed four first half touchdowns and finished the evening 14-of-19 for 238 yards passing while also rushing for 54 yards.
"(Jacob) is a special kid. His athleticism and his football intelligence are second to none. We put the ball in his hands and let him make plays," said Oltman.
Monday's Second Round
Akron-Westfield 28, West Hancock 16
BGM, Brooklyn 23, Lisbon 0
Hinton 14, West Lyon 10
Logan-Magnolia 41, AHST, Avoca 14
Lynnville-Sully 41, Montezuma 0
North Tama 35, Starmont 12
Wapsie Valley 48, Gladbrook-Reinbeck 20
Woodward-Granger 24, Griswold 13
Hinton (8-3) at Akron-Westfield (10-1)
Logan-Magnolia (10-1) at Woodward-Granger (11-0)
North Tama (10-1) at Wapsie Valley (11-0), at Fairbank
BGM, Brooklyn (9-2) at Lynnville-Sully (9-2)
The senior signal caller need just two plays to put the Redhawks on the board tossing a 44-yard strike to Dalton Hulme down the middle after connecting with Jacob Watson on an 18-yard pass.
"The lineman gave me time to find the open receivers tonight," said Wrage.
The Stars (8-3) marched into the red zone on the ensuing drive before Mitchell Boerm snagged a bobbled screen pass to put the ball back in Wrage's hands.
Boerm would get his mitts on the pigskin four plays later hauling in a 44-yard bomb from Wrage to put the Redhawks ahead 14-0 late in the first.
The duo hooked up again early in the second on an eight-yard connection as Boerm finished an efficient two catches for 52 yards and two scores. North Tama's defense stymied another promising Stars drive midway through the frame when Hulme picked off David Lowry inside the Redhawks' 40.
Forced to punt after Wrage's first incompletion of the evening, the Redhawks regained possession one play later when Tyler Nelson pounced on a Jake Butler fumble. Wrage needed just a single play to cash in finding Tanner Swanger on a 35-yard strike to extend North Tama's lead to 27-0 with 4:22 to go in the half.
The Redhawks appeared ready to eclipse the 30-point mark before halftime when Skyler Kvidera recovered another Stars' fumble, though the drive ended when Gabe Hamlett picked off Wrage deep in Starmont territory right before intermission.
North Tama got the ground game going in the second half as Hulme punched in a 5-yard score early in the third. Wrage called his own number on the two-point conversion to get the running clock rolling at 35-0 just three minutes into the quarter.
Butler finally got the Stars on the board late in the fourth with a 7-yard scamper before Starmont recovered an onside kick. Alan Hayes hauled in a 32-yard dart from Lowery with two minutes to go to cap the scoring.
Lowery finished 6 of 18 for 130 yards, one touchdown and three interceptions after throwing just two picks on the season. That number could have been higher Monday as a Redhawk pick six from Watson was negated by a North Tama penalty. North Tama held the Stars 25 points below their season average.
"We brought the noise. We were physical up front and I guess they couldn't handle it," said Wrage, who credited the team's preparation for their dominance in all aspects of the game Monday.
"Our coaches got us ready for (Starmont) in practice. We knew what they were bringing to us."
Oltman returns the praise to his players who are quick and willing to absorb the coaching staff's knowledge.
"Our kids want to learn, they want to listen and they're great students of the game," said Oltman.
"It's a great atmosphere, I couldn't be any happier.
The Redhawks will have plenty on their lesson plan as they prepare for the Warriors.
"We got to watch film and get coached up," said Wrage. "Wapsie is a good football team and will be a big challenge."