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Warriors Emulate Atticus Finch, Deal With Canine Threat

by Julian Aramendi

October 15, 2018

Coming off an ignominious 48-0 defeat in Mankato, the Warriors of Southern Cloud came home to Lobaugh Field to face the Bulldogs of Linn.  The opening drive was a propitious one for the host team, as Southern Cloud used 13 plays to drive 54 yards.  The march included a 19-yard run by Blake Gumm; a fourth-and-one conversion by Morgan Coleman; an 11-yard Coleman-to-Gumm connection to convert fourth-and-11; it culminated with a scoring pass to Ryan Paillet from one yard out.  Coleman subsequently hit Kaury Stout with the two-point pass for an 8-0 lead.

Linn wasted little time in replying; Kevin Alvarado hit a streaking Joseph Trumble for a 53-yard score.  Carson Bellows dropped Trumble on the two-pointer, preserving a slim lead for the Warriors of 8-6. 

With Bellows sidelined by a busted chinstrap snap, a new face entered the backfield; Stout logged his first snaps of the season at fullback.  He gained three first downs on runs of 11, four, and six yards.  Gumm scored from 11 yards out behind a Stout block.  Ryan Paillet hauled in the conversion pass to make the tally 16-6. 

Stout tackled Trumble for a loss of five on the next possession; the Bulldogs could only manage eight yards on the next two plays, forcing a punt.  Three plays for three yards persuaded the Warriors to boot it back.  On the second play of the second quarter Jake Comstock shadowed Trumble into the flat and intercepted Alvarado's pass.  Bellows capped a four-play drive of 22 yards with a four-yard run.  Coleman kept for the two-pointer to make the score 24-6. 

The Bulldogs responded with a scoring march of 43 yards on five plays, including a 24-yard scamper by Alvarado.  Trumble finished the drive with a three-yard run.  He then succeeded on the conversion run to pull Linn within 10 points at 24-14. 

The Warriors would have none of that.  Facing third-and-11, Coleman hit Stout on the slant; Stout dragged his eventual tackler 15 yards for a 30 yard gain.  Bellows earned a fresh set of downs with two runs for 11 yards.  Coleman converted a third-and-seven with an eight-yard scramble to the Linn eight.  Gumm swept right end three plays later to reach paydirt.  Stout caught Coleman's conversion pass for a 32-14 lead.

Things went from bad to worse to downright catastrophic for the Bulldogs; lineman Zach Paillet swooped in front of an ill-advised Alvarado pass, returning the pilfered pigskin 10 yards for the score.  The pick made Paillet the first Warrior since Zach DeMars to intercept a pass in three consecutive seasons.  Bellows converted the seemingly perfunctory two-pointer.  Linn mounted a threat deep into Southern Cloud territory, but a fourth down pass fell incomplete.  Coleman knelt out the remainder of the first half.

Linn gained eight yards on three plays to open the third frame.  Facing fourth-and-two near midfield, Trumble swept to his right.  Nevyn Gold blew the play up for a four-yard loss.  After a Warrior punt, the Bulldogs worked their way to a fourth-and-seven, once more within sniffing distance of the midfield stripe.  This time it was Gumm who threw back the feral foes, sacking Alvarado.  Bellows scored one play later on a 26-yard run.  The two-point pass failed, leaving the score 46-14. 

The Warrior defense forced the Bulldogs into a punting situation; Zach Paillet capitalized with a block, giving his team the ball at the Linn six.  Coleman connected with Stout from two yards out; Gumm burrowed for the conversion; Southern Cloud led 54-14.

The canine contenders countered with a commendable comeback; a seven-play drive culminated with six-yard score behind a Tyler Ohlde block.  Evan Custer stopped Trumble short on the conversion, keeping the score to 54-20.  Southern Cloud replied with a 31-yard pass from Coleman to Gumm down to the Linn one; Bellows punched in the score one play later.  Ryan Paillet made a juggling grab on the two-point pass for a 62-20 score. 

With a fourth-and-seven at their own 24 the Bulldogs opted for an act of skullduggery; a reverse pass from Trumble to Alvarado.  The dastardly scheme might have worked, had Bellows not foiled their plans with an interception.  Alvarado made a jarring tackle of Tony Duggin, dislodging the ball for a Linn recovery.  Trumble scored soon thereafter, following up with a two-pointer.  A successful onside boot by Ye' Oldhe Kicker was pounced upon by the Bulldogs.  Trumble sprinted for a 40-yard score on the next play.  Keaton Bargman purloined a Coleman pass to set up another threat.  The Warrior defense rose up to stymie the visiting hounds; Coleman batted down a fourth-down pass at the goal line.  A 61-yard drive to the end zone ended with a five-yard pass to Ryan Paillet.  Bellows converted the two-point play; Linn subsequently tacked on a final touchdown and conversion to make the score 70-44. 

Bellows led the rushing attack with 19 carries for 103 yards; he scored three times.  Gumm followed up with 14 totes for 87 yards and two scores; Stout contributed four for 22; Coleman logged nine for 15; Duggin added one try for four.  Coleman was six of 13 passing for 80 yards, three touchdowns and an interception.  All six of Coleman’s completions earned Southern Cloud a first down or a score.  Gumm, Stout, and Ryan Paillet recorded two receptions apiece for 42, 32, and six yards, respectively.  Stout scored once; Paillet scored twice.  Comstock logged a pancake block.  Perhaps most impressively, Southern Cloud converted eight of nine two-point plays. 

Tackles and assists were as follows: Bellows 10/4, Coleman 9/6, Stout 9/1, Dusty Mason 6/2, Comstock 5/2, Ryan Paillet 5/1, Gold 4/2, Custer 3/1, Gumm 3/1, Duggin 3/0, Gabe Rice 2/4, Zach Paillet 2/1, Konnor Sutton 1/1.  Bellows and Stout notched three tackles-for-loss each; Gold, Gumm, and Coleman logged one apiece.  Both Stout and Gumm recorded a sack.  Comstock, Bellows, and Zach Paillet intercepted one pass each, with the latter returning his for a score.  Paillet also blocked a punt.  Gold broke up two passes; Coleman one. 

Southern Cloud wraps up district play next week at Tescott against the Trojans. 


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