The Night Hawks had a good test in their opening game as they took on the highly rated Region 1 Wyndmere-Lidgerwood in the first game of the Bye Week Bowl at Shiloh.
By SHELDON CHRISTENSON
For The Record
The Night Hawks had a good test in their opening game as they took on the highly rated Region 1 Wyndmere-Lidgerwood in the first game of the Bye Week Bowl at Shiloh. According to the North Dakota Pigskin Review the Pigskin had the Warbirds rated No. 2 in Region 1 and the coaches poll had them No. 1. The Night Hawks took on the Warbirds in last year’s Bye Week Bowl and defeated them 34-12.
The scoring started out quickly as Luke Foertsch of the Warbirds took the opening kick-off and returned it 76 yards for a touchdown. That was the beginning of a 45-minute first quarter and a total of six touchdowns. Night Hawk junior Isaiah Kludt scored the next two scores on runs of five and 63 yards. Jaxon Mellmer tallied the fourth touchdown of the quarter sandwiched between two touchdown passes by Warbird quarterback Wyatt Harles to Conner Barton and Foertsch. It was tied at 22 all after the first quarter.
It slowed in the second quarter except for Kludt who scored on touchdown runs of 62 and 48 yards. The Warbirds kept pace as they also scored twice to end the half tied at 36-36.
The defenses for both teams stiffened in the second half, although stopping Kludt was not in the cards for the Warbirds, they managed to only slow him down. Kludt scored twice in the second half on runs of 60 and 31 yards, along with Mellmer, who added a 1-yard quarterback sneak. The Warbirds were held to one touchdown in the half, giving the Night Hawks a 54-44 victory.
Kludt finished with 368 rushing yards on 18 carries, while teammate Hudson Pierce added 104 rushing yards on 21 carries. Hunter Churchill led the Warbirds in rushing with 119 yards while quarterback Harles went 10 for23 and one interception in the passing game.
Night Hawk sophomore Jacob Dix stopped a late Warbirds drive with an interception of a Harles pass with a little over three minutes left in the game.
Next for the Night Hawks is Richardton-Taylor-Hebron (RTH) at Hettinger on Friday, Aug. 26. The Raiders also won their opening game with 25-8 victory over Linton HMB.