Panthers remain perfect on the season

Published 12:00 am Sunday, September 16, 2007

ST. JAMES &8212; The New Richland-Hartland-Ellendale-Geneva football team continued to put up impressive numbers Friday night this time steamrolling over St. James 48-7 to improve to 3-0 on the season.

The Panthers gave up the first score of the game on a 38-yard run by Paul Vorn and then proceeded to score 48 unanswered points.

&8220;We are a very versatile group and there is no question that is where our strength is,&8221; Panther head coach Dan Stork said.

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NRHEG quarterback Dakota Tracy led the Panthers by either throwing or running for five touchdowns in the game.

His first score came on a 2-yard plunge into the end zone in the first quarter before he followed that up with a 41-yard connection to Brad Kruckeberg to put the Panthers up 14-7 after one.

Tracy would score from three yards out in the second quarter and find Jon Kormann from 11 yards in the third.

Despite scoring just once in the third quarter, the Panthers rolled off 32 plays to just three for St. James helping NRHEG score 22 points in the fourth.

&8220;The way it started we thought we were going to be in for a real battle,&8221; Stork said. &8220;But I think we were just able to wear them down.&8221;

Tracy had the first trip to the end zone in the fourth on a 10-yard run, followed by a Greg Ramaker 3-yard effort and finally Ethan Hagen marched in from five yards out to complete the scoring.

The Panthers finished the night with 433 yards of total offense including 308 yards on the ground. Blake Kerkhoff had the most effective night on the ground racking up 137 yards, Ramaker added 68 on 10 carries and Tracy chipped 32 yards.

The NRHEG defense forced six turnovers of which the offense turned four into points. Gaven Schlaak and Kruckeberg both had interceptions to lead the way. The Panthers defense has given up just 13 points in three games this season.

NRHEG will look to remain undefeated Friday when it travels to Mapleton to take on Maple River.