It only took one half of football for Winterset quarterback Casey Kleemeier to rack up over 100 all-purpose yards and three touchdowns. Likewise, it took only one half of football for the Huskies to spoil Glenwood’s homecoming festivities Friday night, as the Rams fell to Winterset 21-7 in a game that saw all its points scored in the second half.
Miscues and self-inflicted errors have haunted the Rams throughout the course of the season, the narrative remained unchanged Friday. Glenwood tallied four turnovers that seemingly negated their 218 total yards gained in the run game.
Head Coach Cory Faust briefly acknowledged Glenwood’s recurring theme of mistakes.
“Penalties and mental errors are still an issue on offense,” Faust said. “We have room to improve our passing game as well.”
The Rams struggled immensely to find success through the air, as junior quarterback Zach Carr completed just four passes for 47 yards, while throwing two interceptions on the night. In the ground game, Glenwood was led by senior Colton Schutte for the second week in a row, as he carried the ball 10 times for 78 yards and a touchdown. Senior Noah Carter had nine carries for 55 yards, while junior Dominic Robertson added 36 yards on 10 attempts.
Defensively, Glenwood was rock solid in the first half, holding the Huskies to just 74 yards as well as a zero on the scoreboard. It wasn’t long, however, before Kleemeier and senior running back Hunter Pashek ignited a fire under the Husky offense, combining for over 250 yards after the intermission.
Senior linebacker Eli Bales, who recorded a team-high eight tackles, commented on Glenwood’s defensive performance.
“The way we play defense makes is very tough to defend long routes, and [Kleemeier] threw the ball on the money all night,” Bales said. “Big plays is what made the difference in that game and they just had more timely big plays than we had.”
Not only did Kleemeier drop dimes on offense, but he was the defender that came up with Winterset’s two interceptions.
Faust gave Kleemeier high praise.
“Kleemeier played an outstanding game on both sides of the ball,” said Faust. “He is a sure all-state player, in my opinion. We did a nice job containing him in the run game, but his accuracy throwing the deep ball was outstanding and they made some big plays.”
Glenwood will embrace the age-old saying “no rest for the weary,” as the Rams will face another dangerous quarterback next week in Harlan’s Preston Mulligan. During the Cyclones’ three-game winning streak, Mulligan has been red-hot, completing 55 percent of his passes for a whopping 706 yards and nine touchdowns.
Faust believes the Rams should remain in their same routine as they prepare for a tough road test.
“The formula doesn't change,” Faust said. “It still takes what it takes. We need more of our players all in, committed to being all they can be for the team, surrendering the fact that they can only control ourselves and trusting in each other.”
A passionate Bales knows the Rams have had their chances to win games, but believes sustaining the solid play throughout the entire game is important.
“Finishing is the main thing we need to work on this week,” said Bales. “If we finish every play and every game with the scrappy mentality big things will happen, because we have playmakers on this team but we just need to become finishers. Last week was a punch in the mouth and we don’t want that to happen again.”
Glenwood will look to bounce back this Friday night against the Cyclones. Kickoff is set for 7PM at Merrill Field in Harlan.
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