No. 1 Jets rout No. 4 Gladiators
POWERS — Speed kills.
No. 1 North Central had that on full display in a 71-6 eight-player football rout of No. 4 Ontonagon here Friday night.
The Jets used three quarterbacks in this Great Lakes Eight West Division game — including junior Luke Gorzinski, who completed all five of his passes for 82 yards and a touchdown.
His TD pass to senior Alex Naser covered 51 yards for a 14-6 lead just two minutes, five seconds into the game.
Gorzinski also scored on a 53-yard aerial from junior QB Brent Labonte on the first play of the game.
“Anyone who follows North Central football knows we don’t have just one fast guy,” said Jets’ coach Leo Gorzinski. “We have about 9-10 fast guys. We learned through our defeats that depth is important.”
Senior Steve Graff scored Ontonagon’s lone TD on a 45-yard hook and ladder play, tying the score on its second play from scrimmage before Naser’s score put the Jets ahead to stay.
“Ontonagon tested us,” said coach Gorzinski. “I’m happy they called that play. That woke us up a little. That showed nobody’s laying down for us. Responding to that play is exactly what we needed to see from our guys.”
Luke Gorzinski, showing a quick first step and plenty of speed, added a 20-yard TD on a keeper to the right for a 21-6 cushion with 5:31 remaining in the opening frame and senior Wyatt Raab added a two-yard TD run up the middle for a 28-6 advantage at 3:14.
Raab then scored twice from 36 yards out in the second quarter for a 43-6 advantage.
Labonte added TD passes for 17 yards to junior Dylan Plunger and four yards to Jordan Messenger, giving the Jets a 57-6 halftime advantage.
“They have a great program, and Leo is a great coach,” said Ontonagon coach Tyler Thomas. “I’m not upset about the score, but I am upset about the hustle and effort. We played nervous.
“We were reacting rather than attacking. We have so much work to do. We need to pick up our intensity about a thousand percent, and we’re going to go after it in practice next week. The kids needed a wake-up call. Our intensity wasn’t there.”
Junior Drew Allgeyer and Jordan Walters added 10-yard TD runs for the Jets in the fourth quarter.
North Central (7-0) finished with 519 yards in total offense, including 307 on the ground. Raab ran for 104 yards on seven carries. Luke Gorzinski ran seven times for 88, and Allgeyer had 51 in just two attempts.
The Jets completed all 11 of their passes, with Labonte passing five times for 99 yards and Jake Gorzinski hitting one for 31.
Naser, who left the game after hurting his right knee in the second quarter, had three receptions for 63 yards.
Luke Gorzinski also departed in the second frame after pulling his hamstring.
“We’ll take the win, but I don’t like seeing kids going to the hospital,” said coach Gorzinski. “Alex is the heart and soul of our team. We’re hoping he’ll get better.”
The Gladiators (5-2) were limited to 90 yards in total offense with seniors Jaden Borseth and Eric Abramson combining on a 10-of-18 effort for 85.
The Jets were scheduled to play Gogebic at Bessemer Friday, but the Miners forfeited that game due to COVID. The Jets are looking for an opponent. Ontonagon hosts Stephenson on Friday.