CEDAR RAPIDS - For the second time in six days, the Cedar Rapids Rampage faced off against the Kansas City Comets.
This one did not need overtime.
Goalkeeper Brett Petricek and the Cedar Rapids defense held the Comets scoreless for the e ... »
MARION — It had been a long time between victories at Linn-Mar Stadium for Lions senior Isaiah Garman.
In his third season as a varsity starter, Garman hadn’t been part of a home win since the final home game of his sophomore season, a 26-13 triumph over Waterloo West.
That changed on Friday night in a big way. With Garman leading the way in the second half, Linn-Mar opened Class 4A, District 8 play with a hard-fought 35-21 win over Ottumwa.
It was also Paul James’ first first victory as Lions’ head coach after a successful run at Cedar Rapids Washington.
“It’s been a long time since I have been a part of a win on this field,” Garman said. “It was great to be able to celebrate it with all the students who have kept supporting us.”
Linn-Mar (1-4, 1-0) led 28-21 at halftime behind two scoring runs apiece from Alex Hess and Ben Delegardelle, but it was Garman who sealed the deal in the second half. Hess, a junior, had a huge game on the ground, running for 221 yards on 30 carries.
Garman scored the only touchdown of the final 24 minutes on a trap play that saw him go almost untouched for 49 yards midway through the third quarter. On defense, he came up with two key sacks and a fumble recovery to thwart an Ottumwa (0-5, 0-1) drive inside the Lion 20.
“We worked on that running play a lot in practice,” Garman said. “I have to give credit to the line. They did a great job of opening the hole. I don’t think I’ve scored a touchdown since I played in Metro Youth Football.”
James was clutching the game ball as he left the field as a winner for the first time as Lions’ coach.
“It took a little longer than we would have liked,” James said about getting his first win at Linn-Mar. “We were able to go back to basics and run the ball really well.”