Cornerbacks Gavin Smith and Stanley Lyons set the tone early for the Iowa Central football team by returning two interceptions for touchdowns before their teammates on the other side of the ball even had a chance to run a play.
After being spotted a 14-0 lead, the Triton offense scored five touchdowns and a field goal in the 51-21 victory over College of Dupage on Saturday afternoon at Dodger Stadium.
The win moves the Tritons (4-3 overall, 3-3 Midwest Football Conference West) up to third place in the West Division as North Dakota Science (2-3 MFC West) suffered a 56-24 setback to No. 4 Iowa Western in Council Bluffs yesterday.
"When you start the ball game and your defense scores on the first two possessions, it really jump starts your whole football team," said ICCC head coach Kevin Twait. "It puts the other guys behind the eight ball.
"What a great job for us in pressure with our defensive line. Gavin had a great interception for a touchdown, then Stanley getting another one and taking it to the house. It doesn't get any better than that starting off 14-0."
The Tritons built on the early defensive points by taking a 38-3 lead into halftime.
Iowa Central Gavin Smith (30-yard interception return), 14:00 left first. Edwin Arceo kick.
Iowa Central Stanley Lyons (30-yard interception return), 11:31 left first. Arceo kick.
Iowa Central Darrelynn Dunn (2-yard run), 9:06 left first. Arceo kick.
Iowa Central Jaleel Fox ( 31-yard run), 14:22 left second. Arceo kick.
Iowa Cetnral Dunn (1-yard run), 11:41 left second. Terrance Johnson pass to Zach Steinhoff for two-point conversion.
Dupage Cory Kemps (34-yard field goal), 6:38 left second.
Iowa Central Arceo (27-yard field goal), :39 left second.
Iowa Central Rusty Borne (12-yard run), 11:39 left third.
Dupage Malcom Jackson (20-yard reception), 4:00 left third.
Iowa Central Jevoury Wedderburn (1-yard run), 12:03 left fourth. Arceo kick.
Dupage Orland Thomas (2-yard reception), 2:39 left fourth.
Dupage Darnell Lee (10-yard reception), :00 left fourth.
First downs 17 8
Rushes-yards 59-310 22-95
Comp-Att-Int 2-4-0 16-24-2
Passing yards 39 157
Total offense 349 252
Punts-Avg. 1-30 3-40
Fumbles-Lost 0-0 2-1
Penalties-yards 4-30 1-5
Iowa Central 27 11 6 7 51
Dupage 0 3 6 12 21
Rushing Iowa Central: Darrelynn Dunn 17-99, Jevoury Wedderburn 23-70, Jaleel Fox 5-57, Terrance Johnson 5-31, Rusty Borne 4-40, Tyler Worrall 2-6, Chris Dickson 1-3, Cody Manthe 1-2, Ross Vance 1-1, Eric Norgaard 1-3; Dupage: Bryant Venson 7-21, Darnell Ratcliff 9-44, Rome Coton 2-8, Ryne Ham-Ying 1-12, Cole Lanham 1-7, Da'ronte Smith 1-1, Phillip Gibson 1-2.
Passing Iowa Central: Johnson 2-4-0-39; Dupage: Cole Lanham 16-24-2-157.
Receiving Iowa Central: Zach Steinhoff 1-14, Matt Murphy 1-25; Dupage: Darnell Ratcliff 3-28, Malcolm Jackson 3-31, Venson 1-6, Gibson 1-4, James Kurtz 1-6, Orlando Thomas 3-31, Deshon Conley 1-9, Vega 1-5, Coton 1-20, Michael Carev 1-7.
Darrelynn Dunn scored on a one-yard run with 9:06 left in the first quarter and fullback Jaleel Fox rumbled 31 yards for a score at the start of the second quarter.
A fumble recovery by linebacker Matt White on the Chaparral's 34 yard line set up the Tritons' next touchdown.
Dunn broke off a 26-yard run that set up 1st-and-Goal from the eight and followed it up with a seven-yard run on the next play. After two stops by the Chaparrals' defense, Dunn jumped over the line on a 4th-and-Goal for the touchdown.
Terrance Johnson found Manson Northwest Webster graduate Zach Steinhoff wide open in the endzone for a successful two-point conversion.
Rusty Borne added a 12-yard rushing score on an end around at the 11:39 mark of the third quarter.
In the fourth, Jevoury Wedderburn muscled his way in from a yard out with 12:03 remaining to put the Tritons up 51-9.
"This was a big, big win for us. If we would happen to be fortunate enough to run the table, we would be 6-3 and find ourselves in postseason play," said Twait. "We've got a chance, if we just keep moving forward, to be 6-3 and go to postseason. That's the objective.
"We haven't played very well at home. We challenged our guys to come out and defend the home turf. I'm real proud of their effort."
Another solid ground attack from Dunn and Wedderburn fueled a Triton offense that racked up 310 yards of rushing.
Dunn carried the ball 17 times for 99 yards and Wedderburn picked up 70 yards on 23 totes. Fox added 57 yards on five carries.
"We've got a darn good offensive line and some backs that can go. We have some fine receivers, but when you get ahead 14-0, you don't want to let the other guy back in it either," said Twait. "We leaned on our strength and the strength of our football team is running the ball and Terrance's ability to run our boot legs with a run-pass option. I thought we executed very well with no turnovers."
The Tritons will face Arkansas Baptist on a neutral site next Saturday in the Kansas City area. The Tritons will be playing at the Shawnee Mission South High School field at 11:30 a.m.