Drew Hurley of the Gophers intercepts a Falcon pass on the 1-yard line and returns it 99 yards for the touchdown. Chatfield won its season opener against Fillmore Central. SAM CLEMENS/CHATFIELD NEWS
Drew Hurley of the Gophers intercepts a Falcon pass on the 1-yard line and returns it 99 yards for the touchdown. Chatfield won its season opener against Fillmore Central. SAM CLEMENS/CHATFIELD NEWS
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The Chatfield Gophers opened the 2014 football season with a 46-0 win over Fillmore Central, forcing six turnovers along the way, recovering three fumbles and picking off three Fillmore Central passes. 

Coming up with fumble recoveries were Hank Friederichs, Carter Duxbury and Julius General.  Interceptions were recorded by Riley Ahern, Ryan Meeker and Drew Hurley. 

Chatfield opened the game with a 39-yard kickoff return by Meeker, putting Chatfield at the Fillmore Central 36 yard line. Five plays later Duxbury scored on a five-yard run and the Gophers are on the board with 10:17 left in the first quarter.

On FC’s first possession, Friederichs recovered a fumbled punt attempt by the Falcons.  A Ben Pierce to Hurley pass gave the Gophers a 14-0 lead at 7:41 of the first quarter.

Duxbury recovered a fumble on the Falcons second possession and five plays later Meeker scored on a three-yard run.  A blocked extra point attempt left the score at Chatfield 20, Fillmore Central 0 — with 5:09 left in the first quarter.

After a FC three and out, Chatfield got the ball back for the fourth time and proceeded into the end zone on a Pierce to Hurley  33-yard score.  Chatfield 27, FC 0.

The Gophers fifth possession also results in a score, this time on a 44-yard run by Alex Bradt.  A sixth possession in the first half, from a Hurley interception, resulted in another six points when Hurley returned the interception 99 yards.  When the first half finally ended, Chatfield led 40-0 over the Falcons, but not before Riley Ahern gets the Gophers’ fourth take-away in the first half.

Take-aways number five and six came in the second half on a general fumble recovery and a Meeker interception.  Following Meeker’s interception, Ahern went in for a 15-yard score, the only points in the second half.

Turnovers were a major factor in the game, as Chatfield only had a 288 yard to 237 yard advantage in total offense.  First downs favored Fillmore Central, 11-9, and the Falcons ran 56 plays to Chatfield’s 38.  Chatfield turned four of its take-aways into points, four touchdowns to be exact.

“For having a new quarterback that has never taken a live snap, I was very happy with his performance,” said coach Jeff Johnson.  “And the fact that our first group had no mental mistakes (i.e., fumbles, interceptions, false starts, etc.), I was also very happy.  Defense played stellar.”

 

Stats for the game…

                                        Chatfield                              FC

First downs                                  9                               11

Rushing yards            28c/188y                  36c/145y

                                   0 fum, 4 td’s            3 fum, 0 td’s

Passing yards           6/10, 100y                  8/20, 92y

                                   2 td’s, 0 INT            0 td’s, 3 INT             

Total yards                 38p, 288y                 56p, 237y

Turnovers                           0, 1 td                                  6

Penalties                             7, 59y                        4, 36y

Punting                     1, 33.0 avg.              2, 29.0 avg.

Kickoffs                    8, 42.0 avg.              1, 34.0 avg.