SHERWOOD — Wauseon exploded for 23 points in the second quarter as they ran away with a 40-8 win at Fairview to begin the 2021 football season.
The Indians went ahead 3-0 at the 8:16 mark of the first quarter on a Tyson Rodriguez 24-yard field goal. They threatened on their second possession too, but it ended in Elijah McLeod’s pass intended for Jonas Tester being intercepted in the end zone by Fairview’s Keaton Singer.
Wauseon reached the end zone near the end of the quarter when Sam Smith took a bubble screen and raced 20 yards to paydirt for a 10-0 lead.
“We were a little slow to start here. We were making some big plays. Bad pass by Elijah, I don’t know if it just slipped out of his hand or what in the interception in the end zone, but our guys stayed focused and we stuck with the game plan. And we were able to hit our guys in space — Jonas a couple times and Jude and Sam. That’s what we gotta do. Just keep working at it and perfect at it and not have those little slip ups,” said Wauseon Coach Shawn Moore on his offense eventually getting going.
The mistakes started to pile up for the Apaches after that and the Indians took advantage. They muffed the ensuing kickoff, giving the ball back to the Indians.
On a second down play from the Apache 18-yard line, Tester was on the receiving end of a short pass and he went 18 yards for the touchdown that made it 17-0 11 seconds into the second quarter.
Tester scored two more times in the half to put the game out of reach.
Wauseon again took over in Fairview territory following a three-and-out by the Apaches. That led to a six-yard connection from McLeod to Tester in the right corner of the end zone, pushing the difference to 24-0 with 6:48 until halftime.
Fairview had a mishap on a punt later in the stanza which led to a safety and increased the margin by two.
When the Indians got it back, they put it in the end zone by way of a 19-yard TD pass to Tester. With Rodriguez’ extra point, Wauseon took a 33-0 lead into the locker room.
“Jonas is a great athlete. Us being able to keep him at receiver this year was huge for us. Elijah did a nice job at quarterback in his first start. Again, we’ve got a lot of weapons out there; we’ve got a lot of guys on the bench that, when Jonas goes out, not gonna really skip a beat when we go in the second half with our subs.”
Fairview only got a single first down in the first half, and it did not come until there was five minutes left in the half.
Each team recorded a TD after halftime.
Wauseon made it 40-0 on a one-yard run by Bryson Stump just seconds into the fourth. With 5:40 to go, Fairview’s Breaven Williams got it to Weston Minic for an 18-yard score to reach the game’s final tally.
Moore was not any less impressed by his defense for not being able to secure the shutout.
“It was good to see them have a lot of success out there,” he said. “Gave up one late and that’s OK. We’re not too worried about that one. Just got to stay focused and keep everybody healthy. That’s what we’re looking for.”
Up next for Wauseon (1-0) is their home opener this Friday when they welcome Tinora (0-1).
Reach Max Householder at 419-335-2010.