John Marshall hangs 62-7 setback on Albert Lea football team

Published 12:00 am Saturday, September 14, 2002

ROCHESTER &045; A few weeks ago, with a Major League Baseball strike seemingly imminent, a lot of fans were asking of the players and owners, &uot;How much money is enough?&uot;

On Friday, some Albert Lea High School football fans had to be asking Rochester John Marshall coach Jack Drews, &uot;How many points are enough?&uot;

With his team leading 41-0 in the final minute of the first half, Drews had his starters running a hurry-up offense. It produced yet another touchdown in JM’s 62-7 victory over the Tigers at Rochester Friday night.

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To his credit, Drews kept his starters on the sidelines in the second half.

That’s when the Tigers scored their points and produced most of their highlights, including five of their eight first downs.

The touchdown came with nine seconds remaining, on a 12-yard pass from Tony Tolbers to Jason Kuipers. Ross Habben kicked the PAT.

Kuipers led the Tigers offensively, running for 66 yards on 17 carries and catching two passes for 20 yards. Tolbers completed five of 15 passes for 46 yards, with two interceptions. Steve Thorn caught three passes for 26 yards.

The Rockets outgained the Tigers 452-129 in total yards, including 345-85 rushing. Joe Russell led JM with 168 yards on 14 carries.

It didn’t take the Rockets long to establish control. They held the Tigers on three plays on the opening possession and, on their first offensive play, Joe Russell ran 40 yards for a touchdown.

After another three-and-out, the Rockets went 31 yards in five plays, when fullback Mike Sherels scoring from a yard out.

The Tigers picked up a pair of first downs on their next drive, on a run by Kuipers and a pass from Tolbers to Thorn, but a pitch from Tolbers was picked off by the Rockets’ Mike O’Reilly and returned 38 yards to the Tigers’ 2.

Three plays later, Sherels scored on another 1-yard run.

Sherels then intercepted a Tolbers pass and ran it to the 5, setting up another touchdown run and making it 28-0 at the end of the first quarter.

The Tigers had three possessions in the second period, two ending in punts and the third with an interception.

The Rockets, meanwhile, got another short touchdown run from Russell and a 7-yard touchdown pass to go up 41-0 with 5:29 left until halftime.

The Rockets punted for the first time with four minutes remaining and, after forcing another Tiger punt, got the ball at the Albert Lea 44 in the final minute. Running a two-minute drill, they quickly moved up the field and Russell scored on a 15-yard run with 20 seconds on the clock. Dan Ness’ PAT kick made it 48-0.

The Rockets’ second team got great field position to start the second half and took advantage, going 29 yards in seven plays. JM’s final touchdown came in the fourth quarter.

John Marshall improved its record to 3-0 with the win while the Tigers fell to 0-3.

The Tigers host Faribault this week for homecoming.

Albert Lea &045; 0







&045; 28



7 &045;


First Quarter

JM &045; Russell 40 run (Ness kick)

JM &045; Sherels 1 run (Pairolero pass from Sherden)

JM &045; Sherels 1 run (Ness kick)

JM &045; Garner 5 run (kick failed)

Second Quarter

JM &045; Russell 1 run (Ness kick)

JM &045; Lott 7 pass from Sherden (kick failed)

JM &045; Russell 15 run (Ness kick)

Third Quarter

JM &045; Schafer 1 run (Ness kick)

Fourth Quarter

JM &045; 10 run (Ness kick)

AL &045; Kuipers 12 pass from Tolbers (Habben kick)


First downs: 8, 12

Rushing yards: 85, 345

Passing yards: 46, 107

Total yards: 129, 452

Turnovers: 4, 0


RUSHING&045;AL, Kuipers 17-66, Habben 5-10, Tolbers 12-9; JM, Russell 14-168; Sherels 4-60.

PASSING&045;AL, Tolbers 5-15-2, 46; JM, Sherden 4-7-0, 70.

RECEIVING&045;AL, Thorn 3-26, Kuipers 2-20.