CACHE – The “Battle of the Wichitas” wasn’t much of a fight as the Elgin Owls shut down the Cache Bulldogs 27-0 at Ulrich Stadium last Friday.
The game’s numbers were proof of Elgin’s powerful running attack and an aggressive defense that held the hosts to 77 yards on the ground and 26 through the air. On the flip side, Elgin gained 252 yards rushing and 113 passing.
Elgin tailback Matthew Lund continued his power running by rushing the ball 31 times for 145 yards and two touchdowns.
“I was proud of the way our kids played,” Elgin head coach Chalmer Wyatt said. “We played with extreme effort all night long. I thought our execution offensively was good all night, and hats off to the defense because you don’t see many shutouts at this level anymore.”
Wyatt credited the Elgin offensive line for opening gaping holes that allowed Owl running backs to rack up the yards.
“Our offensive line is getting better every week and that’s got to be our strength, and I think Cache’s defensive line is pretty good,” he said.
Although Lund has gained more than 100 yards in the first two games of the season, Wyatt knows the junior running back is capable of having better games.
“He’s getting stronger and has room to improve. Just from looking at the film, I know there are cuts he wishes he would have made. He’s stronger and faster this season and he’s going a good job of finishing runs.”
Wyatt also had praise for sophomore quarterback Tres Lorah who completed 10 of 17 passes for 113 yards and one touchdown.
“I thought Tres played pretty well. He had a lot of good handoffs, handled the ball well and made big throws to get us in position (to score). He made a really good throw when we were at our own 1-yard line and it got us out to the 16,” Wyatt said. “I’m proud of his poise and how he’s matured.”
Cache started the game with some razzle dazzle with an onside kick attempt which Elgin recovered. Elgin returned the favor a few minutes with a high snap on a punt which Cache recovered at the Owl 13-yard line.
The game looked like it might be filled with miscues as Andre Crabtree intercepted a pass on Cache’s first offensive possession.
Elgin finally settled down late in the first quarter when the Owls took only four plays to score their first TD of the night as freshman tailback Ritson Meyer sprinted 47 yards to paydirt with 1:57 left in the initial quarter. The extra point attempt was good as Elgin led, 7-0. Meyer finished the game with 126 yards rushing on 12 carries.
The Owls increased their lead in the second quarter as Elgin marched 83 yards on 14 plays with Treyvon Crabtree scoring on an 8-yard reverse with 4:19 left before halftime. Elgin kicker Gabe Dittmeyer kicked the extra point as the Owls led 14-0.
First half statistics showed Elgin outplayed Cache with 186 yards of total offense compared to 32 for the Bulldogs.
Elgin’s defense notched its second interception in the third quarter when Gage Elam picked off an errant throw, giving the Owls good field possession at the Cache 38. Three plays later, Lund ran the ball in from the 9-yard line for his first of two TDs. Dittmeyer connected on the extra point as Elgin led, 21-0.
Lund tallied Elgin’s final touchdown of the night on a 1-yard plunge with 5:01 left to play. The extra point attempt failed, giving the Owls a 27-0 lead.
Elgin opens its home schedule Friday night when the Weatherford Eagles come to town for the final non-district game of the season. Kickoff is set for 7 p.m.