Cardinals flatten Hubmen, 41-20
FAIRMONT — Fairmont’s M&M players — David Maakestad and Landen Meyerdirk — combined offensive and special-teams skills to help pace the hometown Cardinals’ “sweet” 41-20 prep football victory over the Jordan Hubmen on Friday night.
Maakestad caught five passes for 143 yards and three touchdowns before adding a fourth score on an end-around sprint, while Meyerdirk hit paydirt on his only tote from long distance and later returned a kickoff 55 yards to set up a game-sealing TD to help christen the new scoreboard at Mahoney Field in Fairmont.
“Every time they (the Hubmen) scored, we answered immediately,” said Fairmont head coach Mat Mahoney. “I thought that was the key — we did a great job of countering every time they made a big play tonight.
“Maak (Maakestad) and (quarterback) Brendan Schmidtke staked us to an early 21-0 lead with three consecutive touchdown completions before our defense and special teams put the game away.”
Schmidtke, who completed 12 of 16 passes for 189 yards, connected with the fleet-footed Maakestad for an acrobatic 49-yard TD grab with 7:29 remaining in the opening quarter before Owen Burmeister kicked the PAT.
Linebacker Aden Welcome, who recorded 11 tackles on the game, made a quick-reflex interception via a ricochet off a Jordan receiver’s hands to put the Cardinals in business near midfield.
Defensive lineman Tyson Thate’s clutch 11-yard quarterback sack later helped Fairmont regain possession of the football via a punt to open the second quarter.
Schmidtke aired out a long spiral to Maakestad, who shook a would-be tackler on instant contact, sprinted down the home sideline and sidestepped another defender near the goal line for a 51-yard TD reception. Burmeister’s kick made it 140 with 11:35 left in the first half.
After Welcome and the Fairmont defense forced another three-and-out series by the Hubmen, Blaze Geiger reeled off 11 of his 42 rushing yards and James Johnson chipped in a 12-yarder to move the sticks downfield.
A pass interference penalty — one of eight infractions called on Jordan — placed the football at the visitors’ 29 and Schmidtke connected for a third time with Maakestad. Schmidtke rolled right out of the pocket and flipped a scoring strike to the sure-handed Maakestad for six more points. Burmeister kicked the PAT for a 21-0 lead with 8:25 left before intermission.
Quarterback Gavin Lloyd, who completed 19 of 36 for 184 passing yards, later zipped a 14-yard quick-out to Jack Olson and a 19-yarder to Nate Kes to eventually set up running back Leo Siekmann’s 3-yard scoring run. Charlie Valle kicked the PAT to pare the Hubmen’s deficit to 21-7 with just 25 seconds remaining before halftime.
“Just one snap, and Landen (Meyerdirk) broke yet another long run and took it to the house to swing the momentum back to us to open the third,” said Mahoney.
Meyerdirk’s 63-yard burst up the middle and vapor-trail acceleration to paydirt, combined with Burmeister’s kick, re-established the Cardinals’ margin to 21 points with only 16 seconds elapsing.
Kes’ 30-yard punt return toward the end of the third quarter later put Jordan in business at the Fairmont 15. Siekmann, who finished with 60 yards on 21 carries, pounded out six yards to the 9 before Lloyd lofted a pass to a sliding Olson for the TD.
Valle’s kick narrowed the gap to 28-14 with no time left in the third quarter.
Afton Koch’s interception of a Geiger pass and his ensuing 22-yard return helped pull the Hubmen within 28-20 with 6:10 left in the third period.
Lloyd rifled a 32-yard spiral to Kes, a 4-yarder and finally a 16-yard post to the sure-handed senior split end in the back of the end zone for a TD. Fairmont’s Levi Pooley, however, blocked the PAT kick to prevent Jordan from inching within seven points.
“Pooley turned in a timely play on special teams before Landen delivered a clutch return on the ensuing kickoff,” said Mahoney.
Meyerdirk caught the kickoff at the 26, motored around right end, shifted gears and sprinted 55 yards to the Hubmen’s 19. Schmidtke hit Maakestad on a 9-yard slant before Elijah Johnson crossed the goal line from 4 yards out for a 34-20 lead with 4:44 to go.
Sawyer Tordsen and Jamie Mueller each recorded quarterback sacks on the next Jordan series to regain possession for Fairmont at the visitors’ 7. Maakestad sprinted around right end for his fourth TD before Burmeister kicked the PAT with 3:27 left.
Fairmont (2-1) travels to Waseca next Friday night, while Jordan (2-1) plays host to St. Peter at Ames Stadium.
JOR 0 7 7 6 — 20
FMT 7 14 7 13 — 41
FMT–David Maakestad 49 pass from Brendan Schmidtke (Owen Burmeister kick), 7:29.
FMT–Maakestad 51 pass from Schmidtke (Burmeister kick), 11:35.
FMT–Maakestad 29 pass from Schmidtke (Burmeister kick), 8:25.
JOR–Leo Siekmann (Charlie Valle kick), 0:25.
FMT–Landen Meyerdirk 63 run (Burmeister kick), 11:44.
JOR–Jack Olson 9 pass from Gavin Lloyd (Valle kick), 0:00.
JOR–Nate Kes 16 pass from Lloyd (kick blocked), 6:10.
FMT–Elijah Johnson 4 run (kick blocked), 4:44.
FMT–Maakestad 7 run (Burmeister kick), 3:27.