Homecoming can sometimes be a distraction, but nothing hindered the Grant Union High School football team on Friday, Oct. 17, from winning its fifth-straight game and fourth-straight in the Wapiti League, with a crushing 63-6 victory over Enterprise.
The outcome of the contest was never in doubt, and the Prospectors surprised the Savages right from the opening kickoff.
After Grant Union took possession of the ball at its own 43-yard line after a botched onside kickoff attempt, the Prospectors went to a hurry-up offense, running the first seven plays from scrimmage without the benefit of a huddle.
"It's something we traditionally work on," Grant Union coach Monty Nash commented about the no-huddle offense. "We haven't come out in a game this year using it, so we thought we'd try it. One thing I wanted to make sure of is we didn't shoot ourselves in the foot. I thought Bo (Thunell) did a real nice job of running it and moving the ball down the field."
The Prospectors' seven-play drive culminated with Thunell scooting the final 11 yards for the score and when Toby Thomas added the extra point, Grant Union held a 7-0 lead.
Thomas made the score 14-0 on a 45-yard run with 8:40 remaining in the first quarter, and a pair of Cody Frazier touchdowns in the final 33 seconds of the period upped the lead to 28-0.
The senior halfback picked up his first score on a 25-yard run and, after Enterprise fumbled the ball away at its own 17-yard line, Thunell hit Frazier with a 17-yard scoring strike on the first play with 13 seconds left in the quarter.
Enterprise managed to score its only touchdown of the game at the 10:16 mark of the second quarter when Clay Freels picked off a batted pass from Grant Union quarterback Orrin Ledgerwood and returned the ball 48 yards for a score.
The extra point attempt was blocked, making the score 28-6.
Thunell hooked up with Mitch Prophet on a 5-yard pass good for a touchdown at the 6:17 mark of the second quarter, and touchdown runs of 7 and 10 yards by Thomas and Frazier gave Grant Union a 49-6 halftime lead.
"I had to keep my older kids in the first half for two reasons," Nash said. "One to get the experience and also because of quarter limits. I couldn't put the young kids in because they played four quarters yesterday."
With Grant Union's reserve players in the game, Ledgerwood made the score 56-6 on a 32-yard run at the 3:10 mark of the third quarter, and Travis Heiple connected with Nick Smith on a 5-yard scoring pass with 11:56 remaining in the contest for the final touchdown of the game.
"I feel bad for Enterprise because I realize they don't have a lot of kids and they don't have a lot of spirit right now," Nash said. "It makes it tough for us, but its important for us to try and execute and do the things we need to do because we're trying to move on to the next level. I thought we played well."
Grant Union had a total of 411 yards in rushing offense led by Frazier who had 105 yards on 10 carries, all in the first half. Thomas netted 96 yards on nine carries, and Thunell rushed the ball 83 yards on six attempts.
Enterprise had just 112 yards in total offense in the game.
Elgin travels to Enterprise on Friday evening with kick off scheduled for 7:30 p.m.
Enterprise 0 6 0 0 6
Grant Union 28 21 7 7 63
Rushing: Enterprise - Gilliland 10/14; McCleary 7/9; T.Swart 8/-3; VanderZanden 4/-1. Grant Union - Frazier 10/105; Thomas 9/96; Thunell 6/83; Ledgerwood 2/51; Kreger 6/26; Prophet 2/21; Bartlett 6/20; Horn 4/9; Chance Johns 2-0.
Passing: Enterprise - Swart 3/8/67, Gilliland 1/1/26; Grant Union - Thunell 4/9/38; Heiple 1/1/5.
Receiving: Enterprise - Gilliland 2/35; Nelson 1/32; Swart 1/26. Grant Union - Frazier 2/23; Silva 1/10; Prophet 1/5; Smith 1/5.