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Chris Murphy, Published September 21 2012

Spuds stay perfect with 40-20 win over Fergus Falls

MOORHEAD – Moorhead running back Chase Morlock was not about to let a little cold and windy weather ruin his homecoming.

Morlock welcomed the frozen elements, rushing for 238 yards on 12 carries and finding the end zone five times as Moorhead celebrated homecoming with a 40-20 win over Fergus Falls in Minnesota high school football on Friday at Jim Gotta Stadium.

Ranked No. 8 in Class 5A, the Spuds (4-0) stayed perfect on the season, while handing the Otters (3-1) their first loss.

“We ain’t losing a homecoming game. This was Spuds weather,” Morlock said. “Our backs love to run, our guys up front love to block, so it was the perfect weather. Everything is starting to gel now. Big plays are opening up, and I’m just seeing the holes and taking them.

“We want to make a run at this and get to the Dome.”

Morlock did not waste any time getting Moorhead on the board, scoring on the Spuds’ first play from scrimmage on a 36-yard scamper to make it 6-0. Fergus Falls answered five minutes later when quarterback Brady Hansen took a quarterback keeper 63 yards to the end zone to give the Otters a 7-6 lead. The Otters would never get the lead again.

Moorhead answered back, marching 66 yards on seven plays on the ensuing drive to go back up 12-7 late in the first quarter. The drive was capped by Morlock spinning around three Fergus Falls defenders into the end zone on a 12-yard run.

The score stayed 12-7 until the final minute of the second quarter. With 1 minute, 18 seconds remaining in the half, Brandon Porter intercepted a Hansen pass, putting the Spuds at the Otters’ 33-yard line. Moorhead quarterback Aaron Lien found Morlock on passes of 15 and 10 yards before finishing the drive with a 15-yard touchdown pass to Morlock in the corner of the end zone to give the Spuds a 19-7 lead at the break.

“We told the kids in the locker room that this is a man’s game and, with the way the weather was, it was going to be played up front,” Moorhead coach Kevin Feeney said. “Our kids did a nice job up front, setting the tone, and our backs made people miss.”

Morlock started the second half the same way he started the first half, finding the end zone on a 56-yard run on the first play from scrimmage for the Spuds. Morlock struck again with an 88-yard burst to the end zone to make it 33-7 Spuds with 7:32 remaining in the third quarter.

“(Morlock) runs just so tough and so hard,” Fergus Falls coach Richard Risbrudt said. “You need to gang tackle him. We just had trouble stopping him.”

Fergus Falls fumbled the ensuing kickoff on its own 9-yard line and Lien made the Otters pay, finding A.J. Wheeler for a 9-yard touchdown strike on the first play from scrimmage to make it 40-7.

“This was a statement game,” Feeney said. “It was two 3-0 teams and we made a statement.”

FF 7 0 7 6–20

M 12 7 21 0–40

M-Morlock 36 run (kick failed)

FF-Hansen 63 run (Rausch kick)

M-Morlock 12 run (run failed)

M-Morlock 15 pass from Lien (Wiedrich kick)

M-Morlock 56 run (Wiedrich kick)

M-Morlock 88 run (Wiedrich kick)

M-Wheeler 9 pass from Lien (Wiedrich kick)

FF-Aho 3 run (Rauch kick)

FF-Rund 16 run (run failed)

INDIVIDUAL STATISTICS

RUSHING: M, Morlock 12-238, Grotta 4-20, Rage 4-26, Magnusson 2-3, Lawrence 3-3, Schindler 2-66, Fietek 1-4, Lien 1-3. FF, Hansen 13-109, Heinen 12-15, Aho 2-0, Rund 3-22, Reinertson 1-(-2), Abbot Aho 5-(-11)

PASSING: M, Lien 6-12-0 63 yards. FF, Rund 0-3-0 0, Heinen 0-1-0 0, Hansen 6-12-1-50.

RECEIVING: M, Lawrence 2-15, Morlock 3-39, Wheeler 1-9. FF, Heinen 2-9, Rund 1-10, Johnson 3-16, Reinertson 1-20.


Readers can reach Forum reporter Chris Murphy at (701) 241-5548