By Alex Masson
SM East continued its perfect march through the 2014 regular season Friday, knocking off district rival SM West 41-19.
The top-ranked Lancers’ offense once again struggled with penalties and ball control. The Lancers fumbled twice but recovered both times, and had 14 total penalties that cost them 124 yards. The Lancers also struggled with passing against the SM West defense, only gaining four yards in total on offense, with one interception and four dropped passes. But a solid run game helped SM East gain an early lead. The Lancers ended up scoring all 41 of their points with the run game, rushing the ball 49 times for a total of 381 yards. Junior running back Calvin Jones scored two touchdowns.
“We ran the ball well today,” said senior quarterback Gunnar Englund, who rushed the ball for 75 yards, “They couldn’t stop it. We got a few penalties and [that] slowed us down. Then I missed a couple of throws but our [offensive] line blocked really good.”
The Lancers started the game with a quick drive after receiving the kickoff, scoring in just two minutes and then pushing the score all the way to 28-0 until just before the end of the first half. After halftime, the Lancers received the ball but were stopped in a four-and-out drive and had to punt to SM West, who would return it to the 30 and eventually score, advancing the score to 28-12.
The Lancer offense would then go two drives without scoring before Englund ran the ball for a 51 yard gain and then score two plays later making the score 35-12. East would then get the ball after a West four and out, and score but missing the pat and making the score 41-12 with 6:30 to play. The Vikings scored after a 22 play drive, but ate up five minutes. On the ensuing kickoff, SM West tried an onside kick but tapped the ball directly into the hands of SM East receiver Alec Dean.
Next week the Lancers travel to Lawrence to take on Lawrence Free State, who are 2-2 in the Sunflower League, with losses to Olathe North and Leavenworth.