IOWA CITY — Call it a Boot hangover, but it didn’t last long.
No. 2 Iowa City West’s potent offense looked rusty in the first half. The Trojans even trailed 7-0 before rattling off 29 unanswered points and 42 in the second half in a big 71-14 win over Cedar Rapids Jefferson last night at Trojan Field.
The Trojans (8-0, 5-0) clinched the Mississippi Division title behind Ezra Reiners’ 118 yards and three touchdowns.
West’s 437 points this season set a Mississippi Valley Conference record, topping Iowa City High’s 423 in 1993. The Trojans are a win from their first undefeated regular season since 1999.
West threw an interception on its first pass and then bit on a halfback pass to fall behind 7-0 in the opening minutes. The Trojans, coming off their first win in eight years over Iowa City High in the Battle for the Boot, responded in a big way.
Reiners’ 1-yard run tied it up midway through the quarter and a Jeremy Morgan’s interception and return to the 2-yard line set up the go-ahead score.
West’s Reid Bonner’s 64-yard punt return for a TD was the highlight of the night. Bonner broke at least five tackles on the swirling run. He appeared to be wrapped up at one point but broke through.
Jefferson (1-7, 1-4), which has been shut out in three games, had a strong first half against one of the state’s best teams.
Layne Sullivan jumped a slant pass on West’s first play for an interception. Jefferson converted the turnover into a 30-yard TD on a nifty halfback pass from Michael Moncivais to Blake Bernauer for a quick 7-0 lead. Bernauer hauled in a 30-yard TD pass from Sullivan with 14 seconds left in the half to get the J-Hawks within two scores.