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Spartans chase Bloodhounds for Homecoming win

Miller throws five TD in 45-7 blowout
Solon senior Seamus Poynton leaves Fort Madison defenders behind as he returns a punt into Bloodhound territory Sept. 27 in Solon.

SOLON– Senior quarterback Cam Miller had himself a night.
Miller went 15-20 for 323 yards passing and five touchdowns against the Fort Madison Bloodhounds for Homecoming Sept. 27, and the Spartans rolled to a 45-7 victory.
Solon racked up 410 yards of total offense while holding Fort Madison to 143 and scored six of touchdowns in the first two quarters for a 38-0 halftime lead.
“Overall it was our best performance of the year,” assessed Solon Head Coach Kevin Miller. “We didn't have a single penalty and didn't have as many missed assignments as the previous week.”
The Spartans’ first drive came away empty, but Solon’s defense kept the Bloodhounds pinned on their own side of the field early and the offense took advantage.
Solon grabbed a 6-0 lead on a 13-yard run by senior Jace Andregg and extended the lead to 13-0 three minutes later on a 4-yard run by senior Seamus Poynton.
The rest of the game belonged to Cam Miller, who hooked up with five different receivers for scores.
The first came with two minutes remaining in the first quarter, a 40-yard strike to senior Cole Arduser to make it 20-0. The next was a 6-yard throw to senior Trey Stebral with seven minutes remaining in the second period.
With two minutes left before half, Miller connected with Andregg for his second score of the night, a 25-yard pass to make the score 32-0.
Then, with time dwindling in the first half, Miller hooked up with senior A.J. Coons down the Solon sidelines for 40-yard touchdown and a 38-0 lead.
Coons spent the second half on the sidelines in a walking boot.
“On the very first play of the game he got rolled up on,” Coach Miller explained. “He played the entire first half with the injury and the second half we elected to keep him out for precautionary measures.”
The Bloodhounds took their best shot coming out in the third quarter.
Fort Madison moved the ball successfully into Solon territory on its first possession. With seven minutes remaining in the quarter, junior quarterback Will Larson eluded the Solon rush, danced around and found a wide-open Parker Denning downfield for a 34-yard touchdown, Fort Madison’s only score of the game.
“Our goal is to be perfect but we understand that teams will make plays and we may have breakdowns from time to time,” Coach Miller noted. “We simply need to minimize those miscues and win the majority of the snaps.”
Poynton gave the Spartans excellent field position on the ensuing kickoff with a 34-yard return, but Solon turned the ball over on a lost fumble in Fort Madison territory.
The Spartans capped the scoring on the next drive, when Poynton took a screen pass from Cam Miller and rumbled down the visitor’s sidelines 67 yards to the end zone escorted by blockers.
The extra point made it 45-7 with 1:44 left in the third period.
Neither team would score in the fourth.
Solon’s defense held Larson to 10-21 for 103 yards passing. Larson was Fort Madison’s leading rusher with 15 yards on 17 carries. The Bloodhounds were limited to 40 yards rushing and 103 passing.
The Spartans, however, managed only 87 rushing yards on 26 attempts, led by Poynton with 42 yards.
Andregg led the receivers with six catches and 123 yards; Coons had five catches for 68 yards, Poynton had the single catch for 67 and Arduser had two grabs for 53.
“We still lack consistency on offense as a whole,” Coach Miller observed. “At times, we do some great things and other times we don't execute like we need to do. We'll continue to stress the value of details and discipline as we prepare for Washington. Our goal is put four complete quarters together in all phases of the game.”
The Spartans go on the road to face the unbeaten Demons Friday. Washington is averaging 43.6 points per game and is coming off a 49-6 home win over Keokuk.
Coach Kevin Miller expects another hard-fought game.
“Washington is a good football team with some playmakers. They have a dynamic offense and a difference-maker at quarterback,” Coach Miller said. “We will need to have a great week of practice in preparation for a very solid Washington team. Defensively they play hard and physical. We need to value the football and take advantage of opportunities when they present themselves.”
Coach Miller thanked the community, parents and especially the student body for its “tremendous support” this season.
The Spartans have only a single home game remaining in the regular season, a visit from the Keokuk Chiefs Oct. 18.