Too many mistakes, that was Century's problem on Friday night.
The Panthers saw their homecoming foiled as Northfield rolled into Rochester and posted a 28-14 victory in Big Southeast District football action.
“We didn’t really get the offense going,” Century coach Jon Vik said. “We had way too many mental mistakes to be successful. I’m sort of at a loss for words as far as where we made those mistakes.”
The tone might have been set on the first drive of the game. Century quarterback Matt Haun ripped off about a 45-yard run inside the Northfield 10, but the Panthers were flagged for illegal motion.
“It was the correct call,” Vik said. “We sent a guy in motion and the other guy on the other side hadn’t gotten set. It didn’t affect the play at all, but it’s the right call. You can’t have two men moving at the same time.”
A bad punt snap late in the first quarter set up Northfield for an 11-yard touchdown drive for the first score of the game.
“That put us in a real bind, too,” Vik said. “You have to overcome those things and it was hard to do.”
Down 14-0 late in the first half, Century (1-5) drove to the Northfield 11. But on second down, Haun had a pass tipped at the line and Darrin Kuyper intercepted the ball to end the threat.
Century was held to just 80 yards in the first half and never did establish a running game. The Panthers finished with nine yards rushing.
“They were just sending people up the middle,” Century wide receiver/defensive back Damian Gerads said. “We have to work around that. I think that’s what we’re going to work on this week. We are just going to practice 100 miles an hour and go after it to get ready for the next game.”
Gerads hauled in a 59-yard touchdown pass from Haun in the third quarter after the Panthers fell behind 21-0.
“It was just a deep route, (I) beat him deep,” Gerads said. “And the reason I beat him deep was because the linemen were holding their blocks and allowed Matt the time to get the ball off.”
“The lineman in their pass blocking, I thought they did a really nice job at times,” Vik said. “I thought we had time (to pass). We just made too many mistakes in the passing game in general. We have to have the right routes, the right reads; we have to do the little things right and we didn’t do that.”
Two Century quarterbacks combined to go 10-for-28 for 207 yards and two TDs. Haun did throw three interceptions, however.
Century’s defense didn’t do too bad a job, despite allowing 373 total yards. Northfield scored one TD in each quarter and its drives covered 11, 63, 57 and 58 yards. Ian Stanton scored on a runs of 3 and 50 yards for the Raiders (3-3) while Soren Richardson tossed touchdown passes in the second and third quarters.
“They were just on the field all night long,” Vik said of the Panthers defense. “It’s hard to be successful when you’re out there all night. Kids get tired.”
“It was a pretty good defensive game, I thought we did a pretty good job,” said Gerads. “We just need to become more disciplined.”
Century scored its final TD with 44 seconds left when backup QB Harrison Esau tossed an 11-yard scoring pass to Josh Berg. The two had set up the score by hooking up on a 66-yard play earlier in the drive.
The Panthers will play at city rival John Marshall next Friday.
“We just have to collectively put things back together,” Vik said. “We have our crosstown rival coming up so if we can’t get focused for that then you have to question some things.”
“I think we just have to bring energy,” Gerads said. “Our whole team has to be pumped.”
Northfield 28, Century 14
Northfield 7-7-7-7 — 28
Century 0-0-7-7 — 14
Nor — Ian Stanton 3 run (Pablo Gallardo kick), 1:58.
Nor — Tate Jorunell 34 pass from Soren Richardson (Gallardo kick), 4:26.
Nor — Austin Koep 23 pass from Richardson (Gallardo kick), 9:23.
Cen — Damian Gerads 59 pass from Matt Haun (Charles Paul kick), 8:19.
Nor — Stanton 50 run (Gallardo kick), 7:22.
Cen — Josh Berg 11 pass from Harrison Esau (Paul kick), 0:44.
First downs 13 10
Total net yards 373 216
Rushes-yards 38-128 24-9
Passing yards 145 207
Pass att.-comp.-int. 12-24-0 10-28-3
Fumbles-lost 0-0 2-1
Penalties-yards 5-51 3 15
Northfield — Ian Stanton 19-99, Charles Monaghan 9-24, Jackson Jerdee 3-14, Soren Richardson 3-2, Kamden Kaiser 1-1, Tate Journell 3-(-12). Century — Matt Haun 12-23, Cole Ebling 7-21, Zach Herber 1-(-1), Harrison Esau 3-(-13), Team 1-(-23).
Northfield — Soren Richardson, 12-24, 145 yards, 2 TDs. Century — Matt Haun 8-26, 130 yards, 3 int., 1 TD; Harrison Esau 2-2, 77 yards, 1 TD.
Northfield — Austin Koep 5-69, Tate Journell 2-42, Gavin Novotny 2-31, Ian Stanton 2-(-2), Jackson Jerdee 1-5. Century — Josh Berg 3-84, Damian Gerads 3-76, Jacob Wills 3-31, Ethan Wills 1-16.