116 3rd St SE
Cedar Rapids, Iowa 52401
CEDAR RAPIDS — North Scott’s Oliver Hughes did a little bit of everything.
He caught passes, made runs, tackles, punts and kicks. The senior wideout had his hands on a lot of the Lancers’ positive plays and seemed to always be around the ball.
Hughes reeled in seven passes for 67 yards and one of Grayson Juel’s three scoring throws in Class 4A top-ranked North Scott’s 20-8 victory over No. 4 Cedar Rapids Xavier on Friday night at Saints Field. Jakob Nelson added two TD catches for the Lancers.
Hughes big night also included two extra points.
“I do what the coaches tell me,” Hughes said. “I always want to be on the field. I always want to have an impact on the team. The biggest thing is I will play my heart out for the team.”
The loss snapped the Saints’ 32-game home win streak.
“I learned that we have some tough kids that played a pretty good opponent,” Xavier Coach Duane Schulte said. “That’s a pretty good football team. They were right in the game.”
The first half was all North Scott. The Lancers (4-0) produced a pair of touchdown drives that were capped by passes from Juel to Hughes.
The first-quarter drive covered 63 yards on 10 plays, including two offside penalties against the Saints with the second resulting in a first down at the Xavier 8. Juel and Jakob Nelson connected for the score on the next play for a 7-0 lead with 6:04 left.
In the second quarter, the Lancers drove 57 yards on seven plays, benefiting from two pass interference penalties. Juel and Hughes hooked up for 4 yards. The extra point attempt was blocked, making it 13-0.
The Saints defense held its ground, despite missing top tackler Thomas Sundell due to injury. It spent a lot of time on the field in the first half — North Scott held a 37-20 edge in offensive plays — and only gave up two scores to a team averaging more than 37 points in its first three contests.
“You have to give our defensive kids credit,” Schulte said. “They tried the best they could and kept us in the game. A couple plays here or there and it might have been a different outcome.”
Juel and Nelson added a 30-yard scoring strike with 8:45 left to make it 20-6. Juel passed for 213 yards. Hughes had nine catches for 105 yards. Darnell Butler added 86 rushing yards for the Lancers.
North Scott’s defense stymied the Saints until late. The Saints only managed 33 rushing yards and were held to field-goal attempts and suffered a turnover with short fields in the second half.
“We’re just a complete defense,” Hughes said. “We play together.”
Xavier (3-1) produced one score in the first half. A 39-yard pass from Alex Neal to WIll Hiserote set up a Trysten Vasquez 42-yard field goal that made it 13-3 with 4:21 before the break.
Vasquez added a 33-yard field goal in the fourth. The Saints defense added a safety with two minutes left to pull within 12.
Alex Neal passed for 232 yards, including 99 to Aidan McDermott. He completed six of his last seven passes as Xavier continued to battle late.
“We told the guys after the game that, whether we won or lost this game, we’re going to get back to the grindstone,” Schulte said. “We’re going to get after it on Monday.
“You get back to work and that’s how it is.”
AT SAINTS FIELD
First Downs 17 10
Rushes-Yds 32-102 28-33
Pass Yds 213 232
Comp-Att-Int 21-31-1 17-29-1
Total Yds 315 263
Fumbles-Lost 2-1 3-1
Punts-Avg. 4-34.5 6-39.7
Penalties-Yds 4-35 4-40
North Scott 7 6 0 7—20
C.R. Xavier 0 3 3 2— 8
RUSHING – North Scott: Darnell Butler 19-86, Grayson Juel 6-15, Payton Kruse 2-2, Oliver Hughes 2-0, Team 3-(-1). C.R. Xavier: Michael Cunningham 18-33, Alex Neal 6-9, Aidan McDermott 3-(-3), Team 1-(-6).
PASSING – North Scott: Juel 21-31-1-213. C.R. Xavier: Neal 17-29-1-232.
RECEIVING – North Scott: Hughes 7-67, Jakob Nelson 6-64, Miles Robertson 3-59, Ryan Campbell 1-12, Butler 4-11. C.R. Xavier: McDermott 8-99, Trysten Vasquez 3-39, Will Hiserote 2-39, Josef Lemker 2-36, Cunningham 1-17, Christian Stanek 1-2.
NS – Nelson 8 pass from Juel (Hughes kick)
NS – Hughes 4 pass from Juel (kick blocked)
CRX – FG Vasquez 42
CRX – FG Vasquez 33
NS – Nelson 30 pass from Juel (Hughes kick)
CRX – Team safety