Comets clobber competition

Norv and Mary Coblentz · Wednesday, September 6, 2017
The West Liberty football team won their second game of the season and their home opener Friday, Sept., against the Highland Huskies.

It was blowout for the Comets, who achieved a final score of 62-7. With the win the Comets' record stands at 1-1 in the early season.

“The kids had fun tonight,” West Liberty Head Coach Jason Iske said. “To me, this is how good programs develop.”

“If we can get in more of these types of games where we can get more guys varsity experience, that's how good programs get rolling,” he added. “I thought our lines did a great job on both sides of the ball. Kudos to those guys, we didn't really miss a beat.”

The Comets put up 41 points before halftime. Since the lead was more than 35 points the continuous clock kicked in at the start of the second half. The Comets didn’t allow a touchdown until the third quarter.

Seth Feldman lead the team as the quarterback, completing 6 of 10 pass attempts for a total of 106 yards. Austin McMichael had one completed pass for a total of 11 yards.

Feldman and Tanner Iske would be responsible for two touchdowns each, meanwhile Bryce Esmoil, Jackson Gingerich, Joe Kelly, A.J. Lenz, Gabriel Melendez and Coy Ruess have touch downs of their own.

Michael Hartman, Austin McMichael and Adrian Velez were part of a stellar defense, holding the opposing side to one touchdown.

The Comets haven’t reached more than 60 points in a game since 2011, when they defeated Louisa-Muscatine 70-8 and Durant-Bennett 69-0. They put up impressive numbers in the 50s during the 2012 season.

Joe Kelly really put a dent in Highland, with 10 rush attempts for 127 yards, as well as catching for 26 yards. He also helped pull off a two-point conversion.

“He's a good running back (Joe Kelly). When he gets a two or three yard head start, he's a hard guy to stop, said Highland Head Coach Scott Morel.

“They're very big up front, and they're quick on the edges. They're a good team. They're a really, really good team” he added.

Friday’s game also marked the first of only four home games during the 2017 season. The second occurs next week when the Comets take on Mid-Prairie, Sept. 8 at 7:30 p.m.

Number three is Friday, Sept. 22, for homecoming, during which they’ll have Anamosa at 7:30 p.m. Finally, on Friday, Oct. 13, they take on Mt. Vernon at 7:30 p.m. for Senior Night.

First Quarter

The Comets won the toss and elected to defend. Bryce Esmoil kicked off, and the ball went out of bounds. The Huskies first drive began at the 35-yard line.

Their quarterback ran the option and gained two yards. He was stopped by Ely Gingerich after a gain of two yards.

The ball was handed off, and the play was stopped behind the line of scrimmage by Eben Bierman and Coy Ruess. After an incomplete pass, the Huskies punted on fourth and nine.

West Liberty began their first drive of the game at the Huskies 39-yard line. Quarterback Seth Feldman handed the ball off to Joe Kelly for ran for nine yards.

Feldman passed the ball to Tanner Iske for a 51-yard touchdown play. The PAT kick by Esmoil was good, an with 9:53 left in the first quarter, the Comets had a 7-0 lead. Esmoil kicked off into the end zone for a touchback.

Spencer Daufeldt and Bierman got the stop on the Huskies' first run. After an incomplete pass with coverage by Justis Dengler, Daufeldt and Trenton Polman got a sack. The Huskies punted on fourth and long.

A.J. Lenz fielded the ball and ran it to the 33. Kelly took the handoff and ran for a touchdown. The PAT kick was no good. There was a penalty on the play, and the Comets got a second chance at the kick but missed it.

West Liberty had a 13-0 lead. The Comets' kickoff was returned to the 33. Bierman and Kelly got the stop. The Huskies took to the air but got nowhere. They punted on fourth and nine and downed the punt at the 38.

The kickoff went out of bounds again, and the Huskies began at the 35-yard line. It was three-and-out for the Huskies with stops by Daufeldt and Polman among others.

Kelly ran for the Comets' first play of the next drive. He made it 22 yards for a first down. An incomplete pass and a sack brought up third and goal at the 10.

Feldman ran the ball in for a touchdown. Kelly ran the ball into the end zone for a two-point conversion. With 5:16 to go in the first quarter, the Comets had a 21-0 lead.

Highland returned the kickoff to the 33; the return was stopped by Bierman and Kelly. It was three-and-out again for the Comets with pass coverage by Nathan Schemmel. On fourth and nine, the Huskies punted.

Highland downed the punt at the 38. Elias Rocha ran the ball six yards. Iske was stopped on a running play. Kelly got the ball and ran to the 38.

Feldman handed the ball off to Justis Dengler who ran to the 22-yard line. Michael Hartman was stopped by the Huskies, then Kelly fought his way to the three-yard line. Kelly ran again, but the Comets were called for holding.

Feldman mada a run to inside the 10-yard line. A fumble moved the Comets back to the 11. Kelly ran to the five.

Second Quarter

The Comets went for the fourth-down conversion but turned it over on downs just after the second quarter began.

Highland began on the six-yard line and didn't get far. Iske broke up a pass, and after additional incomplete passes, Highland was forced to punt from the end zone. Lenz returned the ball to the 15. Iske ran the ball in for a 15-yard touchdown. Esmoil’s PAT kick was good, and the Comets led 28-0 with 10:28 left in the first half. Esmoil kicked the ball off.

The Huskies returned the ball to the 33. An incomplete pass and tough Comet defense brought up fourth down. They went for it, and turned the ball over on downs.

Feldman ran the ball for eight yards. Kelly ran but didn’t get much. Feldman fumbled the ball forward, and Jackson Gingrich caught it and ran the ball in for a touchdown. Esmoil’s PAT kick was good, and the Comets had a 35-0 lead with 8:35 left in the half.

Esmoil’s kickoff was returned to the 27. The Huskies had an incomplete pass, then Highland was called for a false start.

A blitz by the Comets including Adrien Velez, Daufeldt, and Bierman brought up this and long. The Huakies got a pass for fourth and 12. They punted, and the ball took a Highland bounce.

West Liberty’s next drive began at the 36. Feldman pitched the ball out to Kelly who ran past midfield. The Comets were called for holding.

Kelly had a couple of running plays, then Feldman was stopped at the 23. After an incomplete pass, Feldman connected with Dengler. Feldman handed off to Kelly who ran inside the 10. Feldman ran the ball into the end zone with 5:07 to go. the PAT kick was blocked. West Liberty had a 41-0 lead.

It was another quick and fruitless possession for the Huskies. Daufeldt and Austin Beaver broke up a pass play, and Esmoil and Polman got a tackle for loss to bring up four down and 16. The Huskies punted. Dangler returned the ball a short distance.

The Comets had four minutes until halftime, but they did not score. Halftime score was 41-0.

Third Quarter

In the second half, the clock ran continuously because the Comets’ lead was more than 35 points. Highland kicked off, and Lenz returned the ball. Austin McMichael was in as quarterback for the Comets.

After a couple of runs by Lenz, the Comets had a holding call. Gabriel Melendez ran the ball,. An incomplete pass brought up fourth and long. Esmoil punted.

The Huskies got on the scoreboard after a long pass nearly to the end zone and a keeper. The PAT kick was good, and the score was 41-7. The continuous clock rule was stopped until the Comets scored again.

Highland kicked off, and Lenz ran the ball past midfield. McMichael kept the ball and got a first down. McMichael handed the ball off to Melendez, who ran 39 yards for the touchdown. The PAT kick by Esmoil was good, and West Liberty led 48-7. The clock was back on full time.

Esmoil’s kickoff was returned to the 19. The Huskies did not score before the fourth quarter began.

Fourth Quarter

They ran the bell on fourth and third and turned the ball over on downs after a sack.

West Liberty began their drive at the Highland 36. West Liberty had an illegal substitution for first and 15. Coy Ruess ran for four yards. Melendez picked up another four yards.

A Highland player was injured but walked off the field. On third and seven, McMichael passed to ball to Ruess and he went to the 22-yard line for a first down. McMichael ran for six yards. Ruess ran the ball to the three-yard line for first and goal.

Ruess ran the ball in for the touchdown on the next play. Esmoil’s PAT kick was good for a 55-7 score. Esmoil’s kickoff went out of bounds.

Highland started their drive on the 35-yard line. Highland gained five yard running with McMichael getting the tackle. On second and five, the Huskies picked up a first down.

Highland ran a pass play. Rocha and J. Dengler got the stop. Highland got another first down. An incomplete pass brought up second and 10. Highland ran to the 27, but there was a flag for holding on the Huskies

On third down and 17, the Huskies passed the ball for fourth down and four to go. Austin Beaver got a sack, and the Huskies turned the ball over on downs.

West Liberty started their next drive at their own 37-yard line. Valez ran the ball all the way to the Highland 35. Lenz ran the ball in for another Comets touchdown. Esmoil’s PAT kick was good for a 62-7 score with 2:45 on the clock.

Highland got a first down in their next possession, but the game ended before any additional score.

West Liberty stats: Passing: Seth Feldman 6/10, 106 yards, 2 TDs; Austin McMichael 1/2, 11 yards. Rushing: Tanner Iske 1/15 yards. 1 TD; Gabriel Melendez 3/44 yards, 1 TD; Elias Rocha 1/5 yards; Feldman 7/48 yards, 2 TDs; Luis Velez 1/28 yards; Joe Kelly 10/127 yards, 1 TD; Michael Hartman 1/-5 yards; Austin McMichael 3/16 yards; A.J. Lenz 5/48 yards, 1 TD; Coy Ruess 6/37 yards, 1 TD. Receiving: Iske 2/53 yards, 1 TD; Justis Dengler 1/15 yards; Jackson Gingerich 2/12 yards, 1 TD; Kelly 1/26 yards; Ruess 1/11 yards. Tackles: Iske 1 solo; Melendez 1 solo, 1 assist; Elias Rocha 2 assists; Cobain polman 3 solo, 2 assists; Gingerich 2 solo, 1 assist, 2 sacks; Luis Velez 2 solo; Michael Hartman 2 solo; Jonathan Kelley 1 assist; McMichael 2 solo, 1 assist; Ely Gingerich 1 solo, 2 assists; A.J. Lenz 1 solo; Eben Bierman 1 solo, 3 assists, 1 sack assist, 3 TFL assists; Austin Beaver 1 solo, 1 assist, 1 sack; Ruess 1 solo, 2 assists; Talen Dengler 1 solo; Spencer Daufeldt 5 assists, 1 sack, 1.5 TFL; Bryce Esmoil 4 assists, 1 sack assist, 1 TFL; Trenton Polman 1 assist; Brent Meyers 1 solo, 1 assist, 1 TFL. kickoffs: Esmoil 6/307 yards, 1 touchback; Kickoff returns: Lenz 2/29 yards; Punts: Esmoil 1/30 yards; Punt returns: Lenz 2/38 yards; J. Dengler 1/4 yards. PAT: Esmoil 6/8; Kelly 1 2-point conversion run.

Highand stats: Passing: Trey Lasek 8/24, 115 yards; Rushing: Brady Hahn 66/-17 yards; Lasek 12/35 yards, 1 TD; Mason McFarland 1/-2 yards; Jordan Sosa 1/-4 yards. Receiving: McFarland 3/70 yards; Sosa 3/14 yards; Geoff Streb 1/8 yards; Bryce Waters 1/23 yards. Scoring: Brody Burton 1 point; Lasek 6 points. PAT kicking; burton 1/1. Kickoffs: Burton 2/53 yards; Punting: Hahn 5/164 yards. Kickoff returns: Isaac Black 1/12 yards; Lasek 1/23 yards; McFarland 5/38 yards; Sosa 1/0 yards. Punt returns: Lasek 1/0 yards.
More Sports
©2017 West Liberty Index | Web Development by Brian McMillin, LLC