ROACHDALE -- The North Putnam Cougars football team hosted the Class 4A Gary Wallace Hornets in a rare Saturday afternoon game.
The Cougars did not know exactly what they would encounter from the Hornets, as this was the first time in the schools' histories that their teams had played against each other in any sport.
It turned out that North Putnam had little to worry about, as the Cougars overpowered Gary Wallace in every aspect of the game, improving their season record to 4-1, by thrashing the Hornets, 50-8.
The Cougars exploded out of the gate, scoring on seven of their first nine offensive possessions of the game, and North Putnam's defense and special teams were just as impressive.
North Putnam led Gary Roosevelt 29-0 at the end of the first quarter, through an incredible level of intensity and effort by every Cougar player in the game.
Tyler Osborn scored a touchdown on a 22-yard run with 9:18 showing in the period, and then Hunter Logan kicked the first of his four PATs of the evening.
The Cougar defense held the Hornet offense on the next series, and Gary Wallace's center snapped the ball over the head of their punter and out of the end zone, giving North Putnam a 2-point safety.
Travis Franklin returned the Hornet free-kick 38 yards to the 16-yard line and three plays later, Hank Spencer scored his first touchdown of the night on a six-yard run with 6:10 showing on the clock.
After North Putnam's defense held Gary Wallace to another three-and-out series, the Cougars again moved the ball down the field.
Kolten Everts completed the drive by hitting Darr Boruff with a 10-yard pass for a touchdown with 2:15 left in the opening period.
Once again, North Putnam's defense stopped the Hornets, this time with a Caleb Vondersaar interception of a Gary Wallace pass. However, the Cougars stalled on the resulting offensive drive and turned the ball over on downs.
But the Cougar defense again took advantage of the situation, with Shawn Diebold intercepting a Hornet pass, and returning it 50 yards for a touchdown with 0:00 on the clock.
Logan's extra point kick gave the Cougars a shocking 29-0 lead going into the second quarter.
North Putnam would score two more times in the first half; Everts scored a touchdown on a 12-yard run at 7:55, and Spencer scored his second touchdown of the night, a 30-yard run with 2:20 left in the second quarter, and the Cougars took a 42-0 lead into the locker room at halftime.
In a classy move by North Putnam head coach Greg Barrett and his staff, the Cougars did not play their starters throughout the entire second half.
However, the Cougars still managed to score, this time moving the ball 47 yards down the field to score the final points of the game for the home team.
After runs by Brock Jones, Garth Wishert, and Jake Smerage, Allain St. Victor-Duncan scored a touchdown on a four-yard run with 8:30 showing on the clock in the third quarter, and Travis Franklin completed a two-yard conversion, giving North Putnam a 50-0 lead.
During the rest of the game, both teams exchanged possession of the ball five times, but the highlights were a 47-yard punt by North Putnam's Brock Jones, and Gary Wallace scoring a touchdown and two-point conversion with 3:30 left in the game, resulting in the final 50-8 score.
North Putnam earned the win with a team victory, controlling Gary Wallace in every aspect of the game, in a very lopsided statistical victory.
The Cougars generated 271 in total offense, while their defense limited the Hornets to only 77 yards, and North Putnam forced Gary Wallace to punt the ball six times, compared to once by the Cougars.
"We worked hard in every aspect of the game," coach Barrett said after the game.
"We did some good things, we were very consistent, and our option game looked pretty good tonight.
"Gary Wallace's kids played hard and kept coming at us, and you have to give them credit. They didn't quit on us and we definitely weren't going to quit on them.
"Every one of our players got in the game tonight, and they all played hard," Barrett concluded.
Spencer gained 53 yards on five carries to lead the Cougars in rushing. Osborn followed with 48 yards on two carries, Boruff had 39 on six rushes, Everts had 27 yards on three carries, Diebold had 24 on one rush, and Kratt had 16 yards on one carry.
As a team, North Putnam gained 251 rushing yards compared to Gary Wallace's 4 yards on the ground.
The Cougars were 2-for-5 through the air for 20 yards. Quarterback Everts hit Boruff and Franklin with passes of 10 yards each.
Defensively, Spencer led the Cougars with seven tackles, followed by Jones and Boruff with five each, and Aaron Vondersaar and Nate Bryan had four tackles each.
Boruff and Kyle Adams had two tackles for losses each, and Bryan and Aaron Vondersaar had one each.
Adams and Aaron Vondersaar each had a quarterback sack.
Caleb Vondersaar and Diebold each had interceptions, with Diebold returning his for a touchdown.
Finally, Kratt recovered a Gary Wallace fumble for the Cougars.
The Cougars (4-1, 2-0 WCC) travel to Greencastle Friday night to play the Tiger Cubs. The game begins at 7 p.m.
At North Putnam
North Putnam 29 3 8 0 -- 50
Gary Wallace 0 0 0 8 -- 8
North Putnam -- Osborn 22 run (Logan kick) 9:18
North Putnam -- Safety 7:25
North Putnam -- Spencer 6 run (Logan kick) 6:10
North Putnam -- Everts to Boruff 10 pass (Kick blocked) 2:15
North Putnam -- Diebold 50 interception return (Logan kick) 0:00
North Putnam -- Everts 12 run (Logan kick) 7:55
North Putnam -- Spencer 30 run (Kick failed) 2:30
North Putnam -- St. Victor-Duncan 4 run (Franklin run conversion) 8:30
Gary Wallace -- Clark to Collier 46 pass (Harrison run conversion) 3:30
North Putnam (4-1, 2-0 WCC):
Rushing -- (37 carries, 251 yards) -- Everts 3-27, Kirkham 1-(-1), Diebold 1-24, Osborn 2-48, Boruff 6-39, Spencer 5-53, Franklin 1-2, Kratt 1-16, Jones 5-8, Wishert 4-0, Smerage 5-7, St. Victor-Duncan 3-28.
Passing -- (2-5-1-0, 20 yards) -- Everts 2-5, 20 yds, 1 TD, 0 INT.
Receiving -- (2 catches, 20 yards) -- Boruff 1-10, Franklin 1-10.
Total Offense - (42 plays, 271 yards)
Gary Wallace (1-3, 0-0 NWC):
Rushing - (27 carries, 4 yards) -- Clark 4-(-5), Lewis 1-(-10), Harrison 12-31, Rais 1-0, Flores 3-(-4), Davis 6-(-8).
Passing - (2-15-1-2, 73 yards) -- Clark 2-9, 73 yds, 1 TD, 0 INT, Flores 0-5, 0 yds, 0 TD, 2 INT, Davis 0-1, 0 yds, 0 TD, 0 INT.
Receiving - (2 catches, 73 yards) -- Collier 2-73.
Total Offense - (42 plays, 77 yards)
Next Game: The Cougars (4-1, 2-0 WCC) travel to Greencastle Friday night to play the Tiger Cubs. The game begins at 7:00 p.m.