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WEST UNION - When two top 10 teams take the field for a high school football game, it's generally expected to be a closely contested matchup.
But what played out at Ron Wymer Field in West Union on Friday night between No. 7 North Fayette Valley and No. 6 Waukon was anything but.
The host Tigerhawks' head coach Bob Lape expected to, at the very least, have a chance to win against a previously undefeated Indians squad. He most certainly did not expect the 48-8 thumping his team put on the visitors
'No, I did not expect that at all. They're a very good football team,” Lape said. 'It seemed like the breaks went our way, they had a lot of penalties. I thought it would be a lot closer than that.
'We came off and did the things we wanted to do running the ball; we hit a couple passes. We just went out and tried to move around with the ball and just move the chains. We had some big plays that worked out for us.”
The breaks Lape referred to came in the form of NFV forcing six Waukon turnovers, including intercepting Indians quarterback Peyton Hesse four times and recovering two fumbles inside its own 10 yard line.
The Tigerhawks (4-1, 3-0) held Hesse to 18 of 42 for 195 yards, one touchdown and four interceptions. They also held the Indians to just 47 rushing yards as a team and 242 total yards.
It was domination from start to finish, and came in large part because of the defensive scheme Lape and his staff threw at Waukon. The NFV defense dropped seven into coverage on most downs, flooding the pass-heavy Waukon offense with defenders and forcing Hesse into bad decisions.
'We were hoping our front guys could handle the run, and therefore we could put enough guys back for pass coverage, and it worked out for us,” Lape said. 'We frustrated him enough to where he threw some balls up that he probably wishes he wouldn't have thrown.”
Waukon (4-1, 1-1) was uncharacteristically sloppy throughout the game in terms of penalties as well. The Indians committed 12 penalties (10 of which came in the first half) for 116 yards.
Between those and the myriad mistakes on offense, Waukon Coach Chad Beerman was almost at a loss for how to explain it.
'I don't want to comment on the officiating, and I'll leave that at that,” Beerman said. 'I think we came out a little too excited right away, had wide open receivers and missed them. Some of the penalties, I just don't know about. We'll look at the film and see what happened.
'When the game was (still) close and in the balance, we couldn't make the plays to take advantage of it and it got away from us.”
For the Indians, a loss in this manner was particularly frustrating for Beerman because, he said, his team looked in too much of a hurry when the game started.
The Tigerhawks forced them into the exact situations they wanted to stop the Waukon offense, but the Indians failed to adjust properly. It's one for the memory bank, Beerman said.
'I think we were just not patient on offense,” Beerman said. 'I think we were going for chunk plays and we didn't need to. What they were doing on defense to take away the deep throw, but we were still looking for the deep throw. If we see them again down the road, that's something we'll address.”
NFV finished the game with 410 yards rushing as a team and 466 total yards. Without leading rusher Tanner Kuhens, who was out with an undisclosed injury, the Tigerhawks didn't miss a beat and had a textbook NFV-type rushing night.
Senior Dillon Baumler led NFV with 24 carries for 192 yards and two touchdowns, while junior Jesse Mackey - who had 74 yards total coming into the game - finished with 13 carries for 158 yards and three touchdowns.
'It was a workman type night. Blue collar, let's go to work and control the clock,” Lape said. 'And it worked tonight. We didn't have to throw it much. We got into some things we wanted, and I'm proud of the way they played.
'With (Kuhens) out, it was the next guy in and away we went with them.”
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