116 3rd St SE
Cedar Rapids, Iowa 52401
MARION — He’s got three touchdowns in two games.
And the thing is Cedar Rapids Washington’s Chase Mahoney hasn’t carried the football, hasn’t caught a pass. He hasn’t returned a kickoff or punt.
“I don’t know, man. I don’t know,” Mahoney said, after his team beat Marion, 41-13, Friday night at Thomas Park. “I’ve just been at the right place at the right time.”
You could say that.
The senior linebacker had a pick-6 in Washington’s season-opening win last week over Cedar Rapids Jefferson. He plopped on a fumble by teammate Alex Taylor in the end zone early in the second quarter here for a TD.
With the Warriors nursing a 20-13 lead late in the third, he intercepted a rollout pass by Marion sophomore quarterback Kaleb Diers and ran it back 70 yards for a touchdown. Washington had taken the second-half kickoff and driven deep inside Wolves territory, only to turn the ball over on downs.
Marion seemed to have something going offensively for really the first time all game on the ensuing possession, until Mahoney struck again.
“That was the backbreaker. That was huge,” said Washington Coach Maurice Blue. “We didn’t score on that first (offensive) series, so we needed something. Chase made a hell of a play.”
“I saw the play, read the quarterback’s eyes,” Mahoney said. “I think it was about a 12-yard hitch route, saw it out of the corner of my eye. Just played my spot and got the pick.”
Two more Washington touchdowns in the fourth quarter turned it into a rout. They came on a 32-yard run by Watts McBride and 32-pass from Stevie Cain to Michael Blank.
McBride and Blank had two TDs each in this game.
“Our offense definitely came together,” said Blank, who had seven catches for 138 yards. “We realized what we needed to get done. The first half was a little rocky. Last week, we should have blown them out. We had a lot of things to figure out, came together this week and in the second half put on a show. I was really happy with it.”
Washington rotated Cain and sophomore Malik Epps-Keller each offensive series. Epps-Keller went 9-for-16 passing for 98 yards and junior Cain 5-for-10 for 100 yards.
Each threw a touchdown.
“It would be nice if one took over, but if they’re both playing well, we’ll keep playing them,” Blue said. “That’s just kind of the way it is right now. They both have something the other one doesn’t. Eventually we’ll probably have to settle. But maybe we won’t.”
Trickery on Marion’s second possession of the game eventually resulted in a 2-yard QB sneak for touchdown by Diers. On the first play of the drive, Diers threw a slightly backward pass to Alex Mota in the flat, who pulled up and threw a 49-yard forward pass downfield to wide-open receiver Kaiden Griffith to the Wash 2.
Diers threw a 36-yard scoring dime to Mota over the top late in the second quarter for Marion’s other TD. That made it a 20-13 game at the break.
Marion finished with just 122 yards of offense, including 37 yards on 35 attempts rushing. Mota, the University of Iowa recruit, moved from receiver to halfback for this game and to middle linebacker from defensive back on defense.
“Too many penalties in the first half. That was the big issue. The second half, we played a lot cleaner and scored some points,” Blue said.
Washington had eight first-half penalties for 65 yards.
“I think we definitely played a lot better second half,” Mahoney said. ”Obviously better competition. We weren’t ready for that. We adjusted, came out at the half and got the job done.”
Cedar Rapids Washington 41, Marion 13
At Thomas Park
Cedar Rapids Washington 7 13 7 14-41
Marion 6 7 0 0-13
M-Kaleb Diers 2 run (kick failed)
CRW-Watts McBride 1 run (Zach Novak kick)
CRW-Chase Mahoney fumble recovery in end zone (kick blocked)
CRW-Michael Blank 21 pass from Malik Epps-Keller (Novak kick)
M-Alex Mota 36 pass from Diers (Ethan Hangartner kick)
CRW-Mahoney 70 interception return (Novak kick)
CRW-McBride 32 run (Novak kick)
CRW-Blank 32 pass from Stevie Cain (Novak kick)
First downs - Washington 19, Marion 7. Rushes-Yards - Washington 34-164, Marion 35-37. Attempts-Completions-Interceptions - Washington 13-26-0-198, Marion 2-9-3-85. Penalties - Washington 9-80, Marion 6-53. Punts-Avg. - Washington 4-22.0, Marion 5-35.6. Fumbles-lost - Washington 1-0, Marion 2-0.
Rushing - CRW: Watts McBride 19-110, Alex Taylor 9-33, Stevie Cain 5-14, Malik Epps-Keller 1-7. Marion: Kai Glade 6-22, Alex Mota 11-17, Hunter Horak 4-11, Xander Romey 2-7, Tucker Lansdown 1-2, Trey Franck 1-1, Kaleb Diers 8-(minus) 7, Team 2-(minus) 16.
Passing - CRW: Stevie Cain 5-10-0-100, Malik Epps-Keller 8-16-0-98. Marion: Kaleb Diers 1-8-3-36, Alex Mota 1-1-0-49.
Receiving - CRW: Michael Blank 7-138, Landyn Mitvalsky 2-25, Brock Davis 1-17, Leighton Charters 2-11, Montarious Beard 1-7. Marion: Kaiden Griffith 1-49, Alex Mota 1-36.
Comments: (319)-398-8258, email@example.com