MOUNT VERNON - Cornell knew that any chance for success against unbeaten Lake Forest (Ill.) would begin and end with stopping the Foresters' star tailback, Joey Valdivia.
The Rams never got started.
Valdivia ran for 126 yards, four touch ... »
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SOLON — The Solon Spartans made sure there would be no letdown after the showdown.
A week after dispatching then-No. 4 Washington, Solon junior tailback Kendrick Harris rushed for 185 yards and accounted for four total touchdowns as the Spartans humbled Oskaloosa, 34-3, Friday night in a Class 3A District 5 football game.
“We’ve got more of a stronger bond,” Harris said. “We’ve got shirts that say, ‘We do what we do.’ That’s our new mantra and everything is coming together at the right time.”
The right time for Solon (4-1, 3-0 District 5) arrived early with touchdowns on its final four possessions of the first half, which began with a fumble recovery by linebacker Trevor Nelson. Senior quarterback Blayze Griffis drove the offense 62 yards in nine plays, capped by a 22-yard swing pass to Harris for the game’s first score.
“It’s like a dual threat, me and Blayze,” said Harris, who caught two passes for 36 yards. “It’s key because you’ve got that opening and once I get a big run, we can pass it because they’ll be keying on me.”
Senior defensive back Graeson Dall intercepted his first pass of the season on Oskaloosa’s next possession, and one play later Griffis found University of Iowa tight end commit Jacob Coons streaking down the middle of the field for a 51-yard score and a 13-0 lead.
“My O-line was doing a great job of giving me protection and my receivers were getting open for me,” said Griffis, who completed 9-of-10 passes for 153 yards. “He’s a big dude. He’s the best around.”
Coons caught three passes for 78 yards.
The Solon defense forced two more punts, and each time the Spartans’ offense cashed in with Harris touchdown runs of two and 56 yards, respectively, which extended the Solon lead to 28-0 less than a minute before halftime.
Harris’ fourth and final touchdown was a 12-yarder with under five minutes remaining for the game’s final margin.
Solon piled up nearly 300 yards rushing and outgained Oskaloosa (3-2, 2-1 District 5), 450 to 161 in total yardage as the Spartans won their third game in a row.
“I thought we were physical once again,” Solon Coach Kevin Miller said. “We controlled the line of scrimmage both offensively and defensively. That’s something we really hung our hat on is being more physical. That’s certainly been the case the last three weeks.”
Solon — tied with West Burlington/Notre Dame for first in the district — travels to Fort Madison next week.
Class 3A No. 10 Solon 34, Oskaloosa 3
SOL – Kendrick Harris 22 pass from Blayze Griffis (Anthony Bullard kick)
SOL – Jacob Coons 51 pass from Griffis (kick failed)
SOL – Harris 2 run (Graeson Dall run)
SOL – Harris 56 run (Bullard kick)
OSK – Aaron Blom FG 44
SOL – Harris 12 run (kick failed)
RUSHING — Oskaloosa: Blake Allsup 6-29, Ethan Arnold 12-48, Cole Henry 2-5, Bennett Spry 1-(-1), Casey Hill 5-21, Team 1-(-3); Solon: Kendrick Harris 25-185, Payton Bandy 2-15, Blayze Griffis 10-29, Trevor Nelson 4-43, Bo Black 1-8, Graeson Dall 3-8, Bryce West 3-6, Spencer Wegmann 1-3.
PASSING — Oskaloosa: Ethan Arnold 9-24-1-62, Cole Henry 0-1-0-0; Solon: Blayze Griffis 9-10-0-153.
RECEIVING — Oskaloosa: Bennett Spry 2-7, Tanner DeKock 4-40, Jarad Kruse 1-8, Ethan Kelderman 1-7; Solon: Kendrick Harris 2-36, Jacob Coons 3-78, Trevor Nelson 1-17, Grant Goldsberry 2-19, Graeson Dall 1-3.
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