Lehmann, Packers run over Devils Lake
The Packers' running game carried the load on Friday night, as they overwhelmed the Devils Lake Firebirds by a score of 52-6.
Senior Preston Lehmann ran the ball 16 times for 126 yards and a West Fargo High School record five touchdowns, all in the first half. The previous school record of four touchdowns was held by seven different players between 1972 and 2009.
"Getting five touchdowns is pretty special," Head Coach Jay Gibson said. "Of course, he wanted the ball more in the second half, but the game was over."
The rushing attack was aided greatly by the blocks up front, as the offensive controlled the line of scrimmage throughout the game.
The Packers also got a boost from senior running back Shelby Schulz, who carried the ball seven times for 90 yards, most of which came off a 60-yard touchdown run in the third quarter.
"If you're going to move on in the playoffs, you need some big touchdowns," Gibson said. "60 yards usually takes eight or so plays, and to do it in one once in a while is really nice."
Miles Scholl also chipped in with 34 yards on four carries.
The Packers had four different players with a run of 10 or more yards.
As a whole, the team rushed for 305 yards.
"We would love to continue this running game," Gibson said. "We haven't had 300 yards rushing in a game in at least three years. If you can hammer someone, you'll probably control the game."
With the rushing game clicking, quarterbacks Scott Cameron and Jacob Hoy attempted only eight passes combined, completing four for 45 yards. Cameron also ran the ball for a five-yard touchdown.
In 10 offensive possessions, the Packers scored eight times.
The Packers' defense cracked down on the Firebirds. They did not allow a run greater than 10 yards, nor did they allow a pass greater than 20 yards.
They also intercepted Devils Lake quarterback Nathan Mertens twice, once by Schulz and once by senior linebacker Drew Johnson.
Junior Ben Bruenjes led the defense with seven tackles and a fumble recovery.
The Packers move to 5-3 on the season and 4-1 in the Eastern Dakota Conference. They are currently ranked second in the conference behind the Fargo South Bruins, who have yet to lose a conference game.
With no school throughout the state on Thursday and Friday, the Packers play their final regular season game tonight against the Grand Forks Central Knights. If they win, they are guaranteed at least second place in the EDC. If they win and Fargo South loses by 14 or more points, the Packers could take the conference title.
Kickoff for Wednesday's game is set for 7:30 p.m.