WHITE LAKE -- A strong rushing attack helped Kimball/White Lake take advantage of Lyman’s early mistakes en route to a 52-0 win, which ended in the third quarter due to the 50-point rule, on Friday in the Daily Republic Game of the Week.
KWL head coach Dale Taylor credited the win to the WiLdKats’ line play on both sides of the ball.
“Really happy with how our line played,” Taylor said. “We controlled the line of scrimmage on both sides. We all know that’s where it starts.”
KWL started all nine seniors on Senior Day, and it came with glowing results early. A Lyman false start pushed the Raiders back to 4th-and-7 on their first drive, and after they failed to convert, Carter Fredericksen scored a 42-yard touchdown on KWL’s first offensive snap. Lyman fumbled on the ensuing kickoff, with Ty Namanny, who led KWL with 115 yards on the ground, scoring a 14-yard touchdown on the next play to give the WiLdKats a 13-0 lead.
“That was huge for us,” KWL running back Caden Lenz said. “It got us pumped up and helped a lot.”
KWL focused on stacking the box and playing man-to-man defense to stop Lyman’s offense. The pass coverage was “alright, but could’ve been better,” according to Fredericksen, but it was good enough to force multiple turnovers and continue to give the WiLdKats’ offense chances.
And the offense answered.
“Our defense has kind of been our mainstay all season long,” Taylor said. “Thank God our offense came through and helped our defense out.”
Lenz rushed for a 42-yard touchdown early in the second quarter, then after a roughing the passer penalty negated his pick-six later in the quarter, Fredericksen took over.
Fredericksen intercepted the next pass and caught a 57-yard touchdown on the next play. He finished with 64 rushing yards, as well.
“I was seeing a lot of big holes from our lineman,” Fredericksen said. “They do a great job every game. There’s always a huge hole for me. Most of the work is done by them.”
Cody Westendorf, who had a team-high nine tackles on defense, became the third WiLdKat to rush for a touchdown, followed by Justin Becker catching a 43-yard touchdown in the final minute of the first half to send KWL to the locker room up 42-0.
KWL’s offense picked up where it left off after halftime, with Riley Pursell catching a 20-yard pass on 4th-and-15 then scoring on the next play.
However, Lyman’s offense had its best starting field position as it returned the kickoff to the 45-yard line. A couple of plays later, the Raiders fumbled and allowed Nolan Kirsch to return it for a touchdown, ending the game and sending KWL to the Class 9AA playoffs with 2:42 left in the third quarter.
“(Making the playoffs) is a big deal for us,” Fredericksen said. “We’re hoping to get back to the semifinals and maybe get back to the Dome. Just one step at a time, one game, so we’ll see where it goes.”
The WiLdKats finish the regular season 5-3 after winning their final three games. The Raiders finish the regular season 3-5.
KWL: Carter Fredericksen 42 run (kick good)
KWL: Ty Namanny 14 run (kick failed)
KWL: Caden Lenz 35 run (conversion good)
KWL: Fredericksen 57 pass from Javen Holan (conversion good)
KWL: Cody Westendorf 2 run (kick good)
KWL: Justin Becker 43 pass from Holan (kick failed)
KWL: Riley Pursell 6 pass from Holan (kick failed)
KWL: Nolan Kirsch 50 fumble return
PASSING: Kimball/White Lake, Javen Holan 2-2-63-1, Nolan Kirsch 4-6-85-2. Lyman, Ty Schindler 4-12-39.
RUSHING: Kimball/White Lake, Ty Namanny 115 yards, Carter Fredericksen 64 yards. Lyman, Corwin Mohr-Eymer 28 yards.
RECEIVING: Kimball/White Lake, Justin Becker 92 yards. Lyman, Tyson Floyd 1-22.
DEFENSE: Kimball/White Lake, Cody Westendorf 9 tackles, Kordel Kiehn 9 tackles.