SHERBURN - Martin County West quarterback Jake Faber helped generate 434 yards of offense for the Mavericks as they rolled by Minnesota Valley Lutheran 45-26 in Southern Minnesota Conference football action on Friday in Sherburn.
Faber connected on 16 of his 30 pass attempts for 219 yards, while running the ball 16 times for 215 yards on the ground to pace the Mavericks' winning effort.
"Faber is an amazing athlete. He is seeing defenses and making good decisions. He is fast and he can put a ball exactly where it needs to be," said Martin County West head coach T.J. Schmidtke. "He is a great athlete and tonight he really did an amazing job for us."
OVER THE TOP — Martin County West quarterback Jake Faber (back) fires a pass over Mavericks’ lineman Hunter Olson (62) and Minnesota Valley Lutheran defenders Andrew Kassuelke (18) and Josh Wong (10) during Southern Minnesota Conference football action Friday night in Sherburn. (Photo by Leanna Becker)
The home team jumped out to an early 28-0 lead in the first quarter thanks to three scores through the air and another on the ground.
After receiving the opening kickoff, Faber raced through defenders for a 15-yard run on the opening play. On second and 10 from the Chargers 36, Faber gathered another 13 yards for another first down.
After a seven-yard run by Thor Larson was called back via a holding penalty, Faber connected with Cordell Weber along the sideline for a five-yard gain on first-and-20.
The signal caller then scrambled for another 10 yards before tossing a 20-yard spiral into the hands of Wesley Cook for the score with 9:39 left in the first.
Anders Fuller's PAT made it 7-0 in the Mavericks' favor.
The Chargers' Nate Wong returned the ensuing kickoff 54 yards to give MVL possession starting on the Mavericks' 30.
Seth Kroells, who carried the ball 16 times for 86 yards to pace the Chargers offense, raced for a 2-yard gain on MVL's opening drive.
Then on third-and-eight, Chargers' quarterback DeAndre Parker found Korells along the sideline for an 8-yard pass.
Despite Parker getting sacked by the Mavericks' Hunter Olson and Jacob Sinn, Korells raced for another eight yards on third down and 16, nearly extending the visitors' drive.
"They are a young team, and so they don't have numbers like we do, but they played hard and never quit," said Schmidtke. "They had good runners who caused us some problems at times but we were able to hold them off and that's what we needed to do."
After the Chargers' fourth-down pass attempt fell incomplete, the Mavericks took over on downs at their own 18.
Martin County West opened its second drive through the air with a 1-yard connection from Faber to Sam Baker.
Larson then pounded through the gap for 10 yards, before physically running over Charger defenders on first down for a 7-yard gain.
"He (Larson) runs so hard, he just loves contact and he seeks it out when he is running," said Schmidtke. "If he and the rest of our guys can stay healthy, I think we can continue to give teams challenges on defense."
With the ball on the 36, Faber took to the ground again, spinning and stutter-stepping to the end zone for a 64-yard score to go up 13-0.
Faber then found Cook on the Mavericks' next drive for their second touchdown connection to go up 21-0.
Alex Biehn snared a Faber pass for one of his three catches for 56 yards, before Faber threw Cook his second of five catches for 57 yards recieving, for the 21-yard touchdown. Faber then capped off the drive going back to Biehn for the pass on the two-point conversion.
Cook used his hands to snare a Parker pass attempt on the next Charger offensive possession, giving the Mavericks the ball on their own 45.
Larson, who ran 13 times for 93 yards, ripped off 15 yards on the first Maverick play from scrimmage to start the drive.
Faber then floated a pass 40 yards to Alex Saxen, who ran in for the score with four seconds left in the opening period. Fuller's PAT was successful, putting Martin County West up 28-0.
Parker went 9-for-19 passing for 123 yards for the Chargers, who managed 12 points in the second quarter and 14 in the fourth, but just couldn't overcome the Mavericks' offensive efforts.
Martin County West (3-0) plays host to Buffalo Lake-Hector-Stewart in a conference game at 7 p.m. next Friday in Sherburn.
Minnesota Valley Lutheran (0-3) travels to play Red Rock Central in a conference game at 7 p.m. next Friday in Lamberton.