Iowa Central provided its sizable Homecoming crowd with numerous offensive fireworks Sunday afternoon.
Extending their victory streak to four straight games, the 18th-ranked (NJCAA) Triton football team (5-1 overall) closed out non-conference play by thumping Morningside JV, 49-16, inside Dodger Stadium.
Using a diversified attack, Iowa Central chalked up 561 total yards, including a season-high 222 through the air. The Tritons found paydirt on four of their six drives before the break alone, while building a comfortable 28-3 halftime advantage that easily stood up the rest of the way.
Messenger photo by Dale Wooten
Fort Dodge Senior High graduate Willie Williams cuts upfield against the Morningside JV on Sunday inside Dodger Stadium. For more photos, please visit CU?at www.messengernews.net
Five of Iowa Central's seven touchdowns in the game came from at least 25 yards out.
"We didn't run the ball real well early (only 80 of the Triton rushing yards came in the opening 30 minutes), but I was extremely happy with our ability to throw it," ICCC head coach Kevin Twait said. "Our offensive line does the best job of any team since I've been here (in 17 years) of protecting the quarterback and affording them time to find the open (receivers)."
Freshman Triton signal-caller Chris Bell completed 11 of 15 passes, along with a pair of scores. Bell fired a 79-yard endzone strike to Brandynn Clark late in the first quarter, and hooked up with Jaquon Goodman on a 40-yard connection early in the second.
Iowa Central14 14 14 7- 49
Morningside JV3 0 0 13-16
Morningside JV - David Galloway (25-yard field goal), 12:19 left first.
Iowa Central - Jontel Clayton (3-yard run), 4:50 left first. Alden Haffar kick.
Iowa Central - Brandynn Clark (79-yard pass from Chris Bell), 1:28 left first. Haffar kick.
Iowa Central - Jaquon Goodman (40-yard pass from Bell), 13:23 left second. Haffar kick.
Iowa Central - Clayton (25-yard run), 2:54 left second. Haffar kick.
Iowa Central - Clayton (52-yard run), 11:28 left third. Haffar kick.
Iowa Central - Willie Williams (8-yard run), 4:27 left third. Haffar kick.
Morningside JV - Kendall Lindeman (1-yard run), 12:53 left fourth. Galloway kick.
Iowa Central - Kippie Ward (96-yard run), 9:54 left fourth. Haffar kick.
Morningside JV - Kyle Twait (24-yard pass from Caleb Kluender), 5:56 left fourth. Kick failed.
Rushing - Iowa Central: Jontel Clayton 19-135, Kippie Ward 2-104, Ronald Thompson 11-36, Jacob Manley 1-34, Zeke Kasper 5-21, Willie Williams 1-8, Wesley Burnside 2-7, Francisco Garcia 1-4, Chris Bell 2-(minus-10). Morningside JV: Cameron Jewett 12-61, Kendall Lindeman 8-30, Josh Gaedke 6-7, Caleb Kluender 6-6, Christian Nohr 1-5, Scott Finke 3-2, Team 1-(minus-6).
Passing - Iowa Central: Bell 11-15-0-222, Teag Klyn 0-2-0-0. Morningside JV: Kluender 10-17-1-90, Nohr 5-16-2-29, Jewett 0-1-1-0.
Receiving - Iowa Central: Brandynn Clark 2-89, Jaquon Goodman 3-81, Willie Williams 4-49, Clayton 1-6, Kaden Cue 1-(minus-3). Morningside JV: Kyle Twait 5-49, Codey Kallweit 2-27, Trevor Lane 5-13, Lindeman 1-12, Gaedke 1-10, Dexter Lambie 1-8.
Clark pulled down a pair of grabs for a team-high 89 yards. Goodman added three catches for 81 yards.
"I thought our overall team speed was very evident out (on the field)," said Twait. "Our (first team) offense never fumbled, either, for the second week in a row."
Tailback Jontel Clayton ignited the punishing Iowa Central ground charge once again with 135 yards and three touchdowns - from 3, 25 and 52 yards out - on 19 carries. The Fort Dodge Senior High graduate, who finished second nationally in rushing last fall with 1,477 yards, now needs just 366 more yards to set the all-time program rushing mark.
Kippie Ward also delivered 104 yards on only two totes for the Tritons. Ward flashed his potential by breaking loose down the sideline for a 96-yard paydirt gallop with 9:54 left in the contest.
Willie Williams (Fort Dodge) contributed the other touchdown for Iowa Central on an 8-yard scamper off a reverse play. Williams notched four receptions, as well, for 49 yards.
Defensively, the Tritons forced five turnovers and held the Mustangs to just 224 yards of total offense. Chris McGee, Zach Twedt, Justin Garrett and Cameron Berry all posted interceptions for Iowa Central, while Bryan McCarthy recovered a fumble.
Ronelle McNeil, Dirk Schmitt and Jackson Steinberg each managed sacks.
Former Manson Northwest Webster and Iowa Central quarterback Kyle Twait - Kevin's son - was the top receiver for Morningside JV, reeling in five balls for 49 yards, including a 24-yard touchdown pass from Caleb Kluender.
Despite the dominant win, the Tritons lost three fumbles and committed 11 penalties for 90 yards.
"This was a big week for us with the Triton Stampede, pep rally and Hall of Fame ceremony," said Twait. "Our kids were treated to a great Homecoming atmosphere (yesterday), which not many other programs are fortunate to get. We really appreciate all the support from (ICCC President) Dr. (Dan) Kinney, (Vice President of Enrollment Management and Student Development) Tom Beneke and our entire administration."
Next action for the Tritons is Saturday when they welcome rival Ellsworth (3-2) for a 1 p.m. kickoff.