By Dennis Morgan
ELGIN — Class D-1’s top-ranked Burwell Longhorns showed why they are the odds-on favorite to be state champions.
In an awesome display of quick-strike offense and shut down defense, they posted the most rare of feats at Elgin Field — shutting out the Wolfpack.
Elgin Public-Pope John managed just three first downs in the game which was shortened in the second half by the 35-point rule.
To make matters worse, the Wolfpack may be without senior running back Chad Bode for much of the season. On the first play of the second quarter, Bode scrambled to his right attempting a halfback pass. He was hit and fell to the ground, suffering an apparent broken wrist. He left the field and did not return.
“We knew coming into this year it was going to be a learning curve for us,” Coach Randy Eisenhauer said after the game. “They’re (Burwell) ranked number one for a reason. They showed that tonight against us. We have to fight adversity.”
On this night, Burwell had more experience and size and they used it to their advantage early and often.
On their first offensive play, after holding the Wolfpack on downs, Burwell’s Tori Huffman broke free for a 35-yard touchdown. He would add two more touchdown runs (two, five yards) as the Longhorns took a 20 to 0 lead.
Capitalizing on turnovers, Burwell added one more touchdown before the end of the quarter on a 17-run by Cayden Owens.
The biggest cheers for the Wolfpack came midway through the second quarter when linebacker Kenny Bush picked off an Owens pass and returned it to near midfield. Unfortunately, two plays later the Wolfpack fumbled the ball and the Longhorns recovered. It was one of five fumbles lost by the Wolfpack in the game.
Burwell added two more touchdowns before halftime to lead 42 to 0. Then, they started the second half with Ryan Dawe returning the kickoff for a touchdown, the first of two touchdowns he would score in the second half. The Longhorns tacked on one more score in the fourth quarter.
Burwell’s defense limited the Wolfpack to just 72 yards in total offense. Sophomore starting quarterback Hunter Reestman, under constant pressure for most of the night, completed three of nine passes and rushed nine times for 19 yards. Bode, before being injured, had 39 yards on 10 carries.
On defense, the Wolfpack were led by Liam Heithoff with 12 tackles, Miles Schrage had eight.
The Wolfpack (0-1) will next be in action Friday night, on the road against High Plains (1-0).
The game will be played in Clarks. Kickoff will be 7 p.m.
“Our kids will come back ready to go,” Coach Eisenhauer said.
Longhorns 62, Wolfpack 0
Burwell………28 14 14 6 — 62
Wolfpack……..0 0 0 0 — 0
BHS — Tori Huffman 35 run (PAT failed)
BHS — Huffman 2 run (2 pt conversion good)
BHS — Huffman 5 run (PAT failed)
BHS — Cayden Owens 17 run (2 pt conversion good)
BHS — Owens 20 pass to Tyler Gideon (2 pt conversion good)
BHS — Ryan Dawe 1 run (PAT failed)
BHS — Dawe kickoff return (PAT kick)
BHS — Dawe 59 run (PAT kick)
BHS — Sage Konicek 17 pass to Joshua Urbanovsky (PAT failed)
Team totals EPPJ
Passing Yds 17
Total Yds 72
Total plays 39
First downs 3
Fumbles lost 5
Interceptions by 1
Passing — Hunter Reestman 3-9-0 — 17
Rushing — Conor Ramold 1/0, Chad Bode 10/39, Kyle Schumacher 4/-2, Hayes Miller 1/-1, Hunter Reestman 9/19
Receiving — Kenny Bush 1/8, Liam Heithoff 1/9
Tackles (solo/assists) — Cameron Nielsen 2/2 Conor Ramold 2/2, Miles Schrage 2/6, Chad Bode 1/3, Kyle Schumacher 1/3, Cory Romej 1/1, Kenny Bush 1/6, Liam Heithoff 1/11, Hayes Miller 2/2, Lane Bartak 0/1, Austin Bauer 0/1, Hunter Reestman 3/4, Brody Hupp 0/3, Nick Iburg 1/2
Tackles for loss — Hunter Reestman 2, Conor Ramold 1, Cory Romej 1, Liam Heithoff 1
Quarterback sacks — Miles Schrage 1
Interceptions — Kenny Bush 1
By Dennis Morgan