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Chris Murphy, Published September 06 2013

Nuggets roll the Warriors in the HOL Conference football

HAWLEY, Minn. – It would surprise Hawley’s Jordan Harms if he was asked to go play center on the Nuggets offensive line. It would surprise him, but he would do it.

“That would probably surprise me a little bit,” Harms said. “But I would do it. Anything for the team.”

Considering how well he plays quarterback, running back, wide receiver and defensive back, he probably wouldn’t be too bad at it.

Just ask Warroad after Hawley completely manhandled the Warriors 42-12 to move to 2-0 on the season Friday at Hawley in the opening conference game in the Heart O’ Lakes Classic for both teams.

Teams will have to pick their poison against the Nuggets. Harms and Ben Ellefson, both juniors, can play quarterback, running back, wide receiver, tight end and as defensive backs on the defensive side. If they are somehow stopped in all of those facets of the game, the Nuggets have four other guys that can carry the ball.

“They are fantastic athletes,” Hawley coach Peder Naatz said of Harms and Ellefson. “We put them in the position to do what they are good at, which is everything. That’s why you’re seeing so much variety in our offense.”

Warroad (0-2, 0-1) certainly saw plenty of it in the first half of Friday’s game, as Hawley scored on its first six drives to take a 42-0 lead into half.

It wasn’t just Harms and Ellefson either. Chris Buttke went for 58 of his 77 yards for a touchdown on Hawley’s first play from scrimmage. After Harms picked off a pass on the ensuing drive, Dillon Omberg rumbled three yards to make it 14-0 after one quarter.

“It isn’t just us,” Ellefson said of playing with Harms. “We have a lot of good guys that can make plays.”

The second quarter was a prime example of what will drive defenses crazy against Hawley. On the second play of the second quarter, Ellefson found Harms for a 27-yard touchdown pass to make it 21-0 and, after the Nuggets forced a Warroad fumble on the ensuing drive, Harms found Ellefson on a 37-yard touchdown pass to return the favor.

After a blocked punt from Chad Clute gave Hawley the ball on the Warroad 5-yard line, Ellefson lined up at quarterback and plowed over a Warriors defender for a 7-yard touchdown run three plays later.

“We can throw the ball, we go spread, we can go power sets,” Naatz said. “We can throw it, we can catch it, we can run it. It’s fun having kids like that around. You’re unlimited as to what you can do. You’re only limited by your creativity.”

Combined, Harms and Ellefson went 5-for-8 passing for 102 yards and two touchdowns, ran the ball four times for 35 yards and a touchdown and hauled in three passes for 73 yards and two touchdowns to go along with an interception on defense. Scary thing was neither touched the ball in the second half.

“It’s fun having two quarterbacks that can do the same thing,” Harms said. “This team can be really good, but we still have to make sure everything is done up front. That’s where it starts.”

Even scarier is that Harms and Ellefson still have another year to get better together.

“Just trying to focus on the here and now,” Ellefson said. “We have goals set and just hopefully we can try and reach those goals. We still don’t know how good we can be.”

W 0 0 6 6– 0

H 14 28 0 0–42

H-Buttke 58 run (Althoff kick)

H-Omberg 3 run (Althoff kick)

H-Harms 27 catch from Ellefson (Althoff kick)

H-Ellefson 37 catch from Harms (Althoff kick)

H-Ellefson 7 run (Althoff kick)

H-Loegering 3 run (Althoff kick)

W-Cole 27 catch from Nelson (kick no good)

W-Bergeron 1 run (kick no good)

INDIVIDUAL STATISTICS

PASSING: W, Nelson 1-4-1 27 yards. H, Harms 4-6-0 75 yards, Ellefson 1-2-0 27 yards.

RUSHING: W, Roberts 4-13, Nelson 6-(-11), Nash 12-43, McPherson 2-1, Paradis 4-45, Bergeron 1-1. H, Buttke 5-77, Omberg 3-14, Harms 2-21, Clute 4-22, Ellefson 2-14, Loegering 9-50, Hanson 2-10, Koenig 7-46, Steichen 2-10, Wamre 1-6.

RECEIVING: W, Cole 1-27. H, Teeples 1-19, Omberg 1-10, Harms 1-27, Ellefson 2-46.


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