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No. 7 Fairmont earns Mahoney 100th career coaching win

SMOTHERED — Fairmont linebacker Gavin Rodning (23) and defensive lineman Hank Artz (85) swarm under Jordan quarterback Noah Millhouse during district football action Friday night at Ames Field in Jordan. Cardinals’ linebacker Aden Welcome (13) and Hubmen offensive linemen watch the defensive gem. (Photo by Greg Abel)

JORDAN — No. 100.

Fairmont’s Mat Mahoney reached the century mark in career coaching wins when his Class 3A No. 7-ranked Cardinals derailed the Jordan Hubmen, 41-18, on Ames Field’s artificial turf Friday night.

The 15-year head coach, however, modestly deflected all of the individual postgame accolades.

“I guess if you do something long enough, you’re probably going to hit a milestone like this one,” Mahoney said with a chuckle. “In all reality, this was more about it being a big win for us against a tough Class 4A school on the road. It gets us off to a 3-0 start to the season, and I can’t remember the last time that’s happened.

“(Quarterback) Zach Jorgensen put together a great game from both a passing and a running perspective tonight, while our defense was lights out again.”

Jorgensen amassed a staggering 379 yards of total offense and four total touchdowns, split end Eli Anderson produced four TDs — three receiving to complement a 50-yard pick-6, while the Cardinals’ defense held the Hubmen to only 34 second-half rushing yards in Jordan.

Peyton Nawrocki’s interception return to the Fairmont 33 combined with quarterback Noah Millhouse’s lightning-quick TD strike to Ashton Sivilay, however, staked Jordan to an early 6-0 lead with 9:38 remaining in the opening quarter.

“That was a new position for us to be trailing right away in the game, but I gotta give credit to (defensive coordinator) Brad (Johnson) and (varsity assistant coach) John (Kesselring) for putting together a game plan at the half to slow down their run,” Mahoney said in reference to the Hubmen’s 138-yard rushing performance — including 112 yards by running back David Buesgens — during the first two quarters.

Trailing by six, the potent Jorgensen-to-Anderson connection needed just barely more than a minute to counter for the Cardinals. Jorgensen reeled off 20 of his game-best 154 rushing yards on an end-around sprint before firing a 46-yard TD to the sure-handed Anderson. Owen Burmeister kicked the PAT and Fairmont would never trail again.

Anderson then doubled his point production in just 17 seconds by stepping in front of a Millhouse pass at midfield on Jordan’s first snap of the next possession. The fleet-footed Anderson sprinted 50 yards to the end zone for a pick-6. Burmeister kicked the PAT for a 14-6 lead.

Linebacker Gavin Rodning, lineman Hank Artz and the Cardinals’ defense forced a punting situation seven snaps later and it took Jorgensen only four touches to march 93 yards to paydirt.

Jorgensen, who threw for a game-leading 225 yards and three TDs, spotted Anderson on a 7-yard quick flip, zipped a 13-yard screen to Hudson Artz and rifled a perfect 68-yard missile to Anderson, who left nothing but a vapor trail en route to his third consecutive TD. Burmeister’s kick made it 21-6 with 3:49 left in the opening frame.

A personal foul penalty against Fairmont then helped march the Hubmen to their second score of the game. Millhouse, who threw for 167 yards, lofted a 9-yard TD pass to Nate Kes in the left corner of the end zone to trim the home team’s gap to 21-12 with 10:14 showing in the second quarter.

Jorgensen’s 32-yard slashing run through the Jordan secondary helped set up his 24-yard scoring toss to Anderson for the receiver’s third offensive 6-pointer of the night and a 27-12 margin.

Buesgens, who finished with a team-best 149 yards, and Millhouse packed a time-consuming 1-2 rushing punch that culminated with Buesgens’ 4-yard scoring sprint to pare Jordan’s deficit to 27-18 with just 34 seconds left before intermission.

After a scoreless third — highlighted by Rodning’s interception off Noah Rahm’s tipped pass, Jorgensen displayed his multi-tasking skills by making four defenders miss tackles during his 42-yard, twisting, juking and sprinting TD trot. Burmeister’s kick made it 34-18 with only 4:19 remaining in regulation.

Rodning’s 3-yard scoring rumble and Burmeister’s PAT kick provided seven insurance points at the 2:19 juncture before Levi Pooley contributed a late interception to seal the win.

Fairmont (3-0) plays host to Class 3A No. 9-ranked Waseca for a 7 p.m. Homecoming game next Friday night at Mahoney Field, while Jordan (2-1) hits the road to Floyd B. Johnson Field in St. Peter to battle the Saints.

Fairmont 21 6 0 14 — 41

Jordan 6 12 0 0 — 18

SCORING PLAYS

1st Quarter

JOR–Ashton Sivilay 33 pass from Noah Millhouse (kick failed), 9:38.

FHS–Eli Anderson 46 pass from Zach Jorgensen (Owen Burmeister kick), 8:23.

FHS–Anderson 50 interception return (Burmeister kick), 8:06.

FHS–Anderson 68 pass from Jorgensen (Burmeister kick), 3:49.

2nd Quarter

JOR–Nate Kes 9 pass from Millhouse (pass failed), 10:14.

FHS–Anderson 24 pass from Jorgensen (kick blocked), 6:19.

JOR–David Buesgens 4 run (pass failed), 0:34.

3rd Quarter

No scoring.

4th Quarter

FHS–Jorgensen 42 run (Burmeister kick), 4:19.

FHS–Gavin Rodning 3 run (Burmeister kick), 2:19.

TEAM STATISTICS

First downs: Jordan 17; Fairmont 14. Rushing: Fairmont 34-237; Jordan 38-172. Passing (Comp-Att-Int-Yards): Fairmont 9-22-1-225; Jordan 14-29-3-167. Fumbles-lost: Fairmont 2-0; Jordan 1-0. Penalties: Fairmont 6-64; Jordan 5-54.

INDIVIDUAL STATS

Offense: Rushing: Jorgensen (FHS) 19-154; David Buesgens (JOR) 24-149. Passing: Jorgensen (FHS) 9-22-1-225; Millhouse (JOR) 14-29-3-167. Receiving: Fairmont: Anderson 4-145, Hudson Artz 2-50, Levi Pooley 1-20, David Maakestad 1-10. Jordan: Sivilay 4-65, Austin Smith 3-51.

Defense: Interceptions: Peyton Nawrocki (JOR), Anderson (FHS), Rodning (FHS), Pooley (FHS). Fumble recoveries: None.

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