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HS Football: Anselmo-Merna uses big first quarter to top South Loup

August 31, 2013

Anselmo-Merna's Keenan Stupka breaks away from the South Loup defense up the sideline during the Coyotes 34-12 victory over the Bobcats Friday night.

Anselmo-Merna put the South Loup Bobcats away early, taking a 34-0 lead after the first quarter and would go on to win 34-12 .

Anselmo-Merna coach Matt McGinn was pleased with the way his team ran its new up-tempo, no huddle style offense the first time out in a live game.

"With a new offensive scheme, I thought our kids really did well," McGinn said. "The first time out, there's a lot of things that the coaching staff will look for and there's some stuff we have to fix. I also thought our defense played really well."

A lot of Anselmo-Merna's tackles in the game were by more than one player on each tackle. That is a philosophy McGinn preaches to his players day in and day out.

"We spend at least one hour on it every other day in practice," McGinn said. "I've always been a big fan of that on defense. I want kids to be aggressive and swarm to the ball."

Quarterback Troy Gilligan got things started with a 46-yard scamper to the endzone and the Coyotes added the two point conversion to make it 8-0 just over two minutes into the game.

After forcing South Loup into another 3 and out, A-M made another drive downfield, which ended with an eight-yard touchdown run from runningback Trent Geiser to make the score 13-0 midway through the first quarter.

Gilligan would also score in the first quarter on an 11-yard touchdown run and hooked up with Geiser for 55 and 56-yard touchdown passes.

After missing two field goals, South Loup got on the board when Leyton Dockweiler hauled in a 19-yard touchdown pass with 8:50 left in the third quarter

South Loup then forced a punt on the next drive and responded with a 59-yard touchdown run from Colter Glendy to make the score 34-12.

The score could have been even more lopsided, but A-M fumbled twice inside their own five yard line, both of which were recovered by South Loup.

South Loup coach Andy Schwarz felt his team did a good job adjusting after the first quarter as they beat the Coyotes 12-0 the rest of the way.

"When you can't scout them, it changes things," Schwarz said. "We had to just go with the flow in the first quarter and we weren't ready for it. We talked at half-time about coming out and doing your assignment, which we didn't do well early. They did that and shut them down in the second half."

This is also a game that saw quarterback Eamon Schwarz go out with a left shoulder injury and a possible concussion. Colter Glendy filled in his spot at quarterback. Isaac Cole, the team's primary backup quarterback, was also sidelined with an injury."

Penalties were aplenty on both sides as the first-game-jitters were worked out. Schwarz knows that is one of the main factors to work on before next week.

"We had some jumps and some late hits," Schwarz said. "Just some of the typical first game things."

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