Lynx devour Golden Eagles in 40-6 ESD victory

Jakob King, For the Journal
When the Brandon Valley Lynx traveled to Aberdeen on Friday to take on the Golden Eagles, they were met with a downpouring rain as they took the field. It didn’t slow the Lynx down though, as BV’s running game turned out to be as inevitable as the weather.
The Lynx (2-1) amassed over 200 yards and five touchdowns on the ground en route to a 40-6 blowout victory in their first road contest of the season. Senior running back Tate Johnson scored three times on the ground while senior quarterback Joe Kolbeck, who made his first start of the young season, added 68 yards and two touchdowns with his legs.
While Kolbeck didn’t do much passing in his debut – two completions on four attempts – head coach Chad Garrow didn’t understate his value to the offense.
“It was raining non-stop there, so we just didn’t feel comfortable throwing the ball,” said Garrow. “He ran the ball well. What it does with him in the backfield is it makes it so teams aren’t able to key in on Tate and overload one side of the field.”
After opening the season against two opponents who were ranked in the top three in the 11AAA rankings and traveling three hours for a game to be played in the rain, it would have been easy for the Lynx to have a letdown performance. Garrow, however, was impressed with his team’s ability to avoid that.
“I’d guess we had about 16 players on the bus and the rest were transported by their parents,” said Garrow. “So, I was a little worried about that aspect, and where their focus would be, but I thought it turned out really well. The kids came out and were ready to roll.”
The Lynx were ready to roll, and they rolled from the get-go, forcing and recovering a fumble on Aberdeen’s opening possession, which was recovered by Damion Schunke, and then capitalized on the Central miscue with a touchdown to take an early 7-0 lead. 
The Golden Eagles defense held their ground and forced punts on two consecutive Lynx possessions, but their offense kept letting the wet ball slip through their fingers. In total, Aberdeen fumbled five times.
Following the second Central fumble, the Lynx lit up the scoreboard with a 20-yard touchdown run by Johnson, extending the lead to 14-0.
From there, a Lynx scoring onslaught ensued.
BV scored touchdowns on their next two possessions before halftime, as Aberdeen lagged behind. The Lynx held a commanding 27-0 lead as the teams went to their locker rooms for the break.
There would be no comeback for the Golden Eagles on Friday. Johnson’s final touchdown run made the score 34-0, and both teams put in their backups the rest of the way. Aberdeen eventually scored to get on the board, and BV sophomore running back Payton Egan capped the scoring with a late touchdown run. 
With the team’s toughest challenges still before them, Garrow doesn’t want to see his team get complacent just yet.
“There’s still a lot of room for improvement on the offensive line,” said Garrow. “I know we rushed for over 200 yards, but there are still things that we can do a lot better.”
The Lynx return to their home turf Friday when they host the Rapid City Central Cobblers in their homecoming clash. Kickoff is scheduled for 7 p.m. The 0-3 Cobblers are coming off a 38-34 loss to Watertown.


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