“Was this a shutout?”
That's how Glenwood football coach Brian Albert responded when asked when his team last posted a shutout.
It's hard to blame Albert for being a little distracted. He’s got a little more on his mind after his team improved to 3-1 on the season and a 2-0 start in Class 3, District 8 with a 17-0 victory over Clarke-Osceola on Homecoming Night in Glenwood.
Albert couldn't recall the last time Glenwood shut out an opponent or when his team last started a football season 3-1 but agrees the Rams' 2-0 start in the district is big.
“That's probably a bigger deal than the 3-1,” Albert said. “I don't think we performed real well, we played okay against a good team. So I guess not playing your best and still winning is good, too. I think we can do better, but at the same time, we aren't happy with how we played. We made a lot of little mistakes, blocking errors and we got ran over at times.”
The Rams made few mistakes on defense in the first half, holding the Indians to just two first downs and intercepting three of Clarke-Osceola quarterback Joe Lampe's eight first-half passes. But for all their defensive dominance the Rams’ could muster just 10 first-half points on a 23-yard field goal by Michael Lawler and 37-yard scamper by Dylan Blankenship despite dominating the time of possession and holding a 156 to 74 edge in total yards.
In the third quarter a Rams fumble and two punts by each team kept the score 10-0 until a 51-yard punt return by the Rams' Nick Uphoff gave Glenwood good field position at the Indians' 31 yard line. Three plays later fullback Levi Henderson bolted up the middle for a 10-yard touchdown and the 17-0 lead.
Over the next 16-plus minutes of the football the teams would trade punts, committ five penalties and three turnovers.
Albert thought his team played in fits and starts, controlling the line scrimmage one series, getting run over the next. But they made plays when they had to, he said.
“We had good plays, we had bad plays,” said Albert. “Later on they (Clarke-Osceola) got running their offense pretty good and our kids started playing as if they knew what was going on.”
Clarke-Osceola lost just one starter from last season's 1-8 team so Albert thought his team might have a tough time with their complex triple-option witch has its four potential ball carries on every snap.
“I knew even if our kids didn?t since we beat them so easily last year that they'd be a real good team,” said Albert, whose team defeated the Indians 49-7 last season. “They have two or three real good, physical players. We're probably lucky they don?t have a way to throw the ball better.”
“Late in the second quarter they started marching a little bit, eight, nine yards at a time. It's kind of a triple-option, our guys had to stay home and tackle the guy that runs by them instead of taking off and hope they have the right guy.”
Cole Darrow, Grant Loeffelbein, Nick Uphoff and Josh Matthews each had interceptions for the Rams. For the night, Glenwood out gained the Indians 295 to 213 and held a 263 to 179 edge in rushing yards.
Blankenship finished his night with 180 yards on 23 carries. It was the senior's 15th straight 100 yard game in his career.
G - 03 07 07 00 17
C - 00 00 00 00 00
G - Michael Lawler, 23-yard field goal.
G - Dylan Blankenship, 37-yard run (kick good).
G - Levi Henderson, 10-yard run (kick good).