WIMBLEDON (NewsDakota.com)–A stubborn defense and a signature drive were enough to power the Valley City Hi-Liner football team to a 14-7 win in Wimbledon over the Griggs-Barnes County Titans Friday night.
Valley City trailed 7-6 at the break but drove 58 yards on 16 plays, chewing up 7:23 seconds of third-quarter clock on the second half’s opening possession for the eventual game-winnng one-yard sweep by junior runner Jack Jensen.
Head coach Scott Roehrich began using Jensen as a runner for the first time during the matchup, saying he felt he needed to use Jensen after a solid effort in the preseason.
With both teams fighting for their early playoff lives, each looking to avoid an 0-2 start in Region I (eastern division) play, Valley City struck first with Dustin Lindgren dashing 36 yards for a score on the Hi-Liners opening touch.
The Titans answered quicky, with quarterback Tim Erker launching a deep ball to Jacoby Kramlich setting up a Titan score.
Derek Fletcher would cap the drive on a plunge, and a kick by Kramlich gave the Titans a 7-6 edge with 4:48 left of the opening quarter, a lead they would take to halftime as both defenses dug in.
Valley City’s march to start the second half had only one play longer than 10 yards, a 12-yard carry by a banged-up Anthony Olstad, who did not earn a start due to injury but notched his third-straight 100-yard rushing performance. Jensen finished the drive on a sweep behing excellent lead blocking for the winning score with 4:37 left of the third.
The Hi-Liner defense then held the Titans to just three second-half first downs and only 15 yard total offense in the second half. Roehrich said the defensive scheme became quite simple.
Valley City improves to 2-1 overall, 1-1 in Region I play. Griggs-Barnes County is now 0-4 overall, 0-2 in regional play. The Titans visit Lisbon next week, while the Hi-Liners travel to Kindred.
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