The Big Sandy Mountaineer -

Pioneers look sharp, knock off Sunburst 41-25 in season opener

 

August 29, 2018

Kade Strutz,ran for274 yards and five touchdowns

The Big Sandy Pioneers got exactly what they wanted to start the 2018 Northern C Six-man football season, a big win over the visiting Sunburst Refiners Saturday night 41-25.

The Pioneers under the direction of first year head coach Chuck Terry started off a little slow but woke up in a big way and had more left in the tank down the stretch than the Refiners.

Sunburst got on the scoreboard first with a 18 yard run to take a 6-0 lead over the Pioneers. Both teams defenses played well in the opening stanza and the Refiners took their slim lead into the second quarter.

Sophomore Kade Strutz found paydirt for the first time with a one yard plunge to even the contest up at 6-6. Moments later the Pioneers were again deep in Refiner territory when sophomore Quarterback Parker Proulx found sophomore Clint Darlington for a touchdown and a Big Sandy lead 12-6 heading into halftime.

The Refiners would score first in the second half on a two yard run. Following a successful point after the Refiners were back on top 13-12 midway through the third quarter.

The Pioneers would retake the lead on Strutz's second touchdown of the game, a five yard plunge late in the third quarter. Strutz then added the two point conversion and Big Sandy held a 20-13 advantage heading into the fourth quarter.

Strutz scored on a four yard run early in the final stanza as momentum was clearly with the Pioneers. Sophomore Brady Pleninger hauled in the point after on a nice throw from Proulx to give Big Sandy a 27-13 lead.

The Refiners closed the gap a bit with a 46 yard pitch and catch to narrow the Pioneer lead to 27-19. Big Sandy responded quickly as Strutz again found the end zone, this time from 10 yards out. Junior Ryan Roth ran in the conversion attempt and suddenly Big Sandy held it's biggest lead of the game 34-19.

The Refiners showed they still had some fight left in them with time becoming a factor. Sunburst scored on another long pass play to trim the Pioneer advantage to 24-25.

Strutz sealed the Pioneer victory with his fifth rushing touchdown of the game, scoring on a 23 yard jaunt to the endzone to put the finishing touches an a season opening 41-25 win over a tough Sunburst Refiner team.

"Getting that first win is a great way to start the season," said Terry. "We need to work on our defensive coverages, that will definitely be one thing we get after this week as we prepare for North Star."

Parker Proulx,threw for 108 yards and a touchdown in the win.

"The kids really responded to a physical game. They showed a lot of heart to battle the way they did. We still have a lot of work to do, we need to clean up a few things but I like the direction we're going," concluded Terry.

Strutz carried the ball 37 times for 274 yards and five touchdowns in the season opening win. Proulx completed six of nine passes for 108 yards and a touchdown. Junior Brock Proulx caught three balls for 79 yards on the day while Clint Darlington had a touchdown reception with one catch for 15 yards. Brock also led the team with eight total tackles and an interception. Sophomore Clint Darlington added 5 tackles and an interception to the defensive effort.

The Pioneers will head to Rudyard this Saturday to face the North Star Knights. Kickoff is set for 1:00 p.m.

Big Sandy 41 Sunburst 25

Sunburst 6 0 7 12 - 25

Big Sandy 0 12 8 21 - 45

 
 

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