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Fast start keys Louisburg’s third consecutive win

Andy Brown / Louisburg Sports Zone
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Senior linebacker Charlie Koontz brings down a Eudora player during Louisburg’s 17-7 homecoming win over Eudora on Friday at Wildcat Stadium. Koontz led the Wildcats with 13 tackles on the night.

The Louisburg football team could get used to this.

Good times continued for the Wildcats on Friday as they got out to a quick start and picked up their third consecutive win with a 17-7 victory over Eudora on homecoming.

That 0-2 start they had to start the year – is now way in the rear view mirror and Louisburg is 3-2 on the season. Life couldn’t be much better for the Wildcats right now.

“Going 0-2 sucks, but those losses were against two quality teams,” Louisburg coach Robert Ebenstein said. “But for these kids to come back and win three in a row and get back on the winning side is a testament to them and the hard work they put into it.”

A common theme during the Wildcats’ winning streak is their ability to get off to a fast start. In each game, they have scored a touchdown on their opening possession and it continued Friday.

Louisburg went 80 yards in 12 plays and finished it off with a 1-yard touchdown run from junior Ben Wiedenmann to go up 7-0 on the Cardinals. The early lead in each of their wins has proved vital for Louisburg.

“Luckily we got off to a good start before they could settle in,” Ebenstein said. “Once Eudora settled in, they kind of started stunting and twisting. They uglied it up a little bit and we didn’t pick it up well after that.

“I think it honestly comes back to our coaches creating a game plan and teaching it well. We are just able to take it from the get go before teams have a chance to see exactly what we are doing. That has been big, but honestly we just executed really well. We kind of knew what they would be to start with and we were able to take advantage to it.”

Following the touchdown, momentum continued to build for Louisburg as senior kicker Drake Varns executed a perfect onside kick opportunity and he recovered his own kick just past the 10 yards the ball was required to travel.

The Wildcats took full advantage as quarterback Madden Rutherford found Weston Guetterman on passes of 34 and 13 yards, which led to a 3-yard touchdown run by Andy Hupp. Louisburg had a 14-0 lead before Eudora had a chance to get its hands on the ball.

“Coach (Drew) Harding saw on film where we had potential to do what we call the ‘middle dribble’ and it worked out perfect,” Ebenstein said of the onside kick. “It was a great call by him. They blocked it perfect and Varns placed it perfectly. I think he kicked it 11 yards to cover it and it was as good as you could have drawn it up.”

Louisburg’s offense slowed down a little after that, but the Wildcats were able to add on to their lead at halftime. With just seconds left in the second quarter, Wiedenmann broke free for a 38-yard run down the sideline, which allowed the Wildcats to try for the field goal.

Varns, once again came through for Louisburg as he converted a 41-yard field goal to put the Wildcats up 17-0 as time expired in the first half.

Kicker Drake Varns leaps into the arms of Louisburg coach Robert Ebenstein after making a 41-yard field goal right before halftime.

“Eudora dropped everyone back so I just went ahead and ran ‘stretch’ to see what would happen and Ben hit the edge hard,” Ebenstein said. “I told Drake that if we got close we were going to kick it and he got his opportunity. He might have doinked it in, but it worked and was a good kick.”

Wiedenmann led Louisburg in rushing with 123 yards on 17 carries and the Wildcats were also able get their passing game going at times. Rutherford competed 12 of 18 passes for 116 yards, many of which went to Guetterman.

The junior wide receiver caught eight of those attempts for 107 yards and made key catches down the stretch to keep drives alive.

“Weston made play after play when we went to his side,” Ebenstein said. “He had a great game and Madden did a good job getting it to him. We were also able to play solid defense, and whether we win by 1, 10 or 30, we will take it.”

Junior Eli Johnson makes a tackle for the Wildcat defense during the team’s 17-7 win Friday.

The Wildcat defense gave up a few yards to the Cardinals, but they were able to keep them out of the endzone until the fourth quarter when Eudora was able to prevent the shutout. Louisburg held Eudora to 272 yards of offense and junior Konnor Vohs also intercepted a pass in the second half.

Senior linebacker Charlie Koontz, who was in his first game back from injury, led the Wildcats with a team-high 13 tackles and Hupp added seven. Seniors Michael Waldron and Garrett Harding each had six tackles in the win.

Louisburg will try and keep its winning streak going this Friday when it travels to Atchison for a non-league contest. Kickoff is set for 7 p.m.

LOU               14           3             0             0 – 17

EUD               0             0             0             7 – 7

SCORING SUMMARY

First quarter

L: Ben Wiedenmann 1 run (Drake Varns kick)

L: Andy Hupp 3 run (Varns kick)

Second quarter

L: Varns 41 FG

Fourth quarter

E: Zeke Reazin 1 run (Caden Willits kick)

STATISTICS

RUSHING – Ben Wiedenmann 17-123, Andy Hupp 10-25, Justin Collins 2-18, Kolby Kattau 2-10, Madden Rutherford 5-1

PASSING – Madden Rutherford 12-18-116

RECEIVING – Weston Guetterman 8-107, Andy Hupp 1-6, Ben Wiedenmann 1-3, Charlie Koontz 2-0

TACKLES – Charlie Koontz 13, Andy Hupp 7, Michael Waldron 6, Garrett Harding 6, Justin Collins 5, Brandon Doles 4, Konnor Vohs 3, Eli Johnson 3, Weston Guetterman 2, Ben Wiedenmann 2, A.J. Reed 2, Brayden White 2, Andrew Krause 1, Tom Koontz 1

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