MARION — The key to Iowa City West’s offense, according to Coach Brian Sauser, is finding mismatches.
“Defending Dondre (Alexander) and Jeremy (Morgan), that’s a mismatch for anybody,” Sauser said. “If anybody tries to keep up with them one-on-one, nobody’s going to keep up with them.”
Individual mismatches. Collective mismatch.
Nate Boland passed for 237 yards as West ended Linn-Mar’s nine-game regular-season winning streak, 49-14, in a Mississippi Valley Conference interdivisional football game Friday night at Linn-Mar Stadium.
West’s seven touchdowns were scored by six different players.
A junior, Boland proved to be a worthy successor under center to Charles Rogers, who is at Iowa State these days. He completes 14 of 22 passes, and two touchdowns.
Boland connected with six different receivers, locating those mismatch boys — Alexander and Morgan — four times apiece.
“That was a heck of a first game for (Boland),” Sauser said. “He was calm, cool and collected.”
Alexander’s four snags accounted for 118 yards. And Ezra Reiners ran for 118 yards and a score.
West (1-0) is ranked No. 5 in Class 4A by The Gazette/KCRG. The Associated Press’ first rankings will be released Monday.
The Trojans came up empty on their first drive, then scored on their next four.
Boland connected with Morgan for a 14-yard touchdown, Fullback Colin Baker tallied from 4 yards out, Boland hooked up with Micah Kelsay for a 10-yard score, then took it in himself on fourth-and-goal from 6 yards away.
West led 28-0 at halftime, racking up 294 yards.
Linn-Mar (0-1) had one serious drive in the first half, reaching the West 20 midway through the second quarter. But the Lions went backwards from there, and a 51-yard field goal attempt was well short.
The margin grew to 42-0 before the Lions got on the board twice in the fourth quarter. Ross Lembeck scored on a 9-yard run; Dakota Digmann added a 2-yard tally.
Lions QB Rhys Davis accounted for 84 yards on the ground and 56 in the air.
West hosts Cedar Rapids Washington next week; Linn-Mar is at Dubuque Senior.
Iowa City West 49, Linn-Mar 14
|TEAM STATISTICS||IC West||Linn-Mar|
|Rushes-yards||33 – 178||33 – 196|
|Comp-Att-Int||16 – 25 – 0||6 – 10 – 0|
|Fumbles-lost||2 – 0||2 – 1|
|Punts-average||1 – 39.0||3 – 27.6|
|Penalties-yards||9 – 85||4 – 44|
IC West – Ezra Reiners 11-118, Orion Phillips 4-20, Micah Kelsey 4-18, Colin Baker 4-10, Devin Raffensperger 2-7, Xavier May 2-3, Nate Boland 6-2. Linn-Mar – Rhys Davis 13-84, Ross Lembeck 9-70, Matt Meier 1-31, Nick Trabucco 9-9, Dakota Digmann 1-2.
IC West – Boland 14-22-0-237, May 2-3-0-34. Linn-Mar – Davis 6-10-0-56.
IC West – Dondre Alexander 4-118, Jeremy Morgan 4-50, Anthony Batie 2-34, Baker 2-27, Reiners 2-17, May 1-15, Kelsay 1-10. Linn-Mar – Jon Schlotterback 2-19, Meier 2-12, Trabucco 1-21, Lembeck 1-4.
SCORE BY QUARTERS
ICW – Jeremy Morgan 14 pass from Nate Boland (Morgan kick)
ICW – Colin Baker 4 run (Morgan kick)
ICW – Micah Kelsay 10 pass from Boland (Morgan kick)
ICW – Boland 6 run (Morgan kick)
ICW – Ezra Reiners 45 run (Morgan kick)
ICW – Kelsay 3 run (Morgan kick)
LM – Ross Lembeck 9 run (Austin Wolter kick)
ICW – Anthony Batie 25 pass from Xavier May (Morgan kick)
LM – Dakota Digmann 2 run (Wolter kick)