Marion High School football coach Grant Thierolf said his team did what it needed to Friday night, after a game that had a running clock before the fourth quarter began.
“Bennington was a beat-up team,” Thierolf said. “They had a couple of their kids that didn’t play tonight that would have certainly presented some challenges.”
The Warriors started fast, scoring on a 56-yard run by Adam Janzen on the third play from scrimmage.
On the next possession, a failed fourth down attempt by Bennington gave Marion the ball at the Bulldog 34. The Warriors soon after scored again on a 23-yard fade pass from Taylor Heidebrecht to Zach Robson.
On the second play of Bennington’s next drive, linebacker Trevor Kruse benefited from defensive line pressure, intercepting a Dustin Stanley pass, and returning it to the 13-yard line.
The interception would set Kruse up for his first rushing touchdown, an 18-yard run around the end.
The Warriors led 19-0 by the end of the first quarter.
Janzen began the second quarter with another long run to Bennington’s 1-yard line, capped by a short Kruse run, putting Marion up 25-0.
The teams alternated throwing interceptions the next four drives before a bad snap on a Bennington punt gave Marion the ball on the Bulldog 14.
The error resulted in a James Jones touchdown catch with 16 seconds left in the first half. The Warriors led 32-0.
Caleb Williams ran for a score on Marion’s first possession of the second half, and Robson would do the same at quarterback on the next Warrior drive, giving them a 46-0 lead.
Bennington scored its only points in the fourth quarter, resulting in a 46-6 final score.
Thierolf thought the defense played well again, and was happy to see the junior varsity team get a chance to play on a Friday night.
“I’ll tell you, they played a whole lot better tonight than they did Monday night,” he said. “They played with a little excitement, a little fire, and I actually think I heard some pads popping.”
The Warriors play at home Friday against Inman High School in Marion’s homecoming game.
“The focus is trying to get healthy and then trying to improve,” Thierolf said. “I’m sure we’ll find on film there’s a whole lot of things we didn’t do very well tonight.”