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December 2, 2021

10/22/2021 11:08:00 AM
Friday's test for Cards will determine home cooking

The next goal for the undefeated Highland football team is to stay that way when they invade Wauzeka-Steuben Friday.
While the Cardinals have a firm lock on a berth in the post season they would love to see as many games played at Tyler Field as possible. A win Friday should make that happen.
But Wauzeka-Steuben in no push over so Cardinals coach Mike Aide is taking nothing for granted.
"Wauzeka-Steuben will give us a heavy dose of the run game," Aide predicts. "Weather will play a big role in this game. We will need to control the line of scrimmage if we are going to have any success. It should be a good game Friday night."
With Homecoming games there is always a question mark if the team will be 100% focused or not. After a slower than normal start the Cardinals shifted into top gear and rolled over Hillsboro 58-2 in a game where many players got to touch the football.
The Cardinals scored twice in the first quarte than stuck 32 points on the board in the second frame to all but put the game on ice.
Hillsboro got a safety in the third quarter but the Cardinal reserves put up 14 more points the final quarter to close out the lopsided win.
The two first quarter scores came on an eight yard run by quarterback Maximus Oleson and a one yard plunge by Brett McGuire.
Oleson got the second quarter going with a 20 yard flip to Caden Linder for a score through the air and Colton Frost got his number called to complete a drive with a one yard plunge.
Before intermission Oleson got his second score on a six yard run and Cal Dorota got the next one from one yard out. McGuire broke tackles and carried the football 40 yards to make it 46-0 at intermission.
Aide tabbed the JV for action the second half an they finished the scoring with a pair of big plays, both by Darren Laufenberg. Laufenberg lugged the ball 62 and 25 yards to make it 58-2.
With that many points it is hard to believe the Cardinals had any downtime but Aide felt they did at the start.
"I think we were kind of slow starting the game," Aide said. "I think with it being Homecoming our players seemed a little sluggish. We kept working and then found some good rhythm on offense and defense. Once we got rolling we caught fire."
"Brett McGuire and Darren Laufenberg did a great job on Saturday." Aide added. "I thought both played very well and each scored two touchdowns. Max Oleson also got in on the scoring with two rushing touchdowns and a passing touchdown. The JV got in the second half for playing time. The JVs are starting to do some really good things."
Once again the quickness in the Cardinal backfield was too much as the Tigers found out.
"Our speed definitely makes us much more difficult to defend." Aide said 'We did a good job getting to the edge and using our speed to make those big plays."
Laufenberg gained 87 yards on two carries while McGuire picked up 77 in five tries. Dorota ran the ball for 45 on five carries and Oleson gained 26 in four. Four other Cardinals also picked up yards in the 387 they totastled on the ground.
Oleson threw for 92, completing four of six with one going for a touchdown. His top receivers with all catching one were Bryce Bollant for 43 yards, Lindner for 20 and Drew Nankey for 18.
Sam Talo had six tackles to lead and Dorota had five. Two of Talo's were for losses and Dorota recovered a fumble. Frost and Bryce Nankey also had fumble recoveries.
The game had some special meaning besides being a Ridge and Valley win and Homecoming. It was also a salute to area veterans with ceremonies before the game. Aide was pleased with the community's acceptance and participation.
"I was really proud of our community coming out and supporting our veterans before the game," Aide said. "I have two coaches on my staff who have served in the military. I also have some coaches that have fathers who have served. My wife was also in the military. The players wore uniforms in honor of all the veterans. We also had stickers dedicated to different branches of the military that the players wore on Saturday and will continue to wear the rest of the season. I would like to thank the Highland VFW and Highland American Legion for being there on Saturday for the National Anthem and presenting the colors."

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