Valparaiso wrapped up its season-opening two-game road trip on
Saturday afternoon, suffering a 42-7 loss to Franklin
at Faught Stadium in Franklin,
Franklin’s Kyle Ray threw for four touchdowns and ran for
another as the Grizzlies racked up 568 yards of total offense.
The Grizzlies struck quickly,
returning the opening kickoff to the Crusader 26 yard line. Two plays later, Reece Craig went around the
left side and scored from 16 yards out.
After Valpo went
three-and-out, Ray completed a 66-yard pass to put the Grizzlies
first-and-goal. Two plays later, Ray
found Kam Silcock on the right side from seven yards out and Franklin led 14-0
just 3:36 into the game.
“I really thought we would
come out ready to play today,” head coach Dale
Carlson said. “Instead we came out
flat. We gave them a couple of plays
early and never recovered.”
The Crusaders finally found
the scoreboard with 10 seconds remaining in the opening quarter. Eddie Morelli (Racine, Wis./Saint
Catherines H.S.) ran right and scored from four yards out, pulling Valpo within
14-7 heading into the second quarter.
Franklin (1-1) immediately answered as Ray found Mitch Deffner
in the left corner of the end zone from 11 yards out. One possession later, the duo hooked up again, this time from four yards out
despite a pass interference call on the
Crusaders, and the Grizzlies took a 28-7 lead
into the locker room.
Valpo’s offense struggled in
the second half, holding the ball for just 6:19 total while gaining 33 in the
The Grizzlies added a
touchdown in each of the final two quarters to close out the scoring. Ray threw an eight-yard pass to Kyle Linville
in the third while rushing for a one-yard scoring in the fourth.
Oconee H.S.) was one of the lone bright spots for the Crusader defense,
intercepting a pair of passes, one in the end zone at the other at the Valpo 12
“Eli’s played well two weeks
in a row,” Carlson added. “He’s playing
tremendous football right now.”
Valpo’s offense totaled just
209 yards of offense on the afternoon, 183 of which came through the air. Nate
Goergen (Golden, Colo./Golden
H.S.) completed 16-of-34 passes for 170 yards, but was intercepted once as
Ray completed 27-of-36 for
382 yards and the four touchdowns for the Grizzlies. Craig added 73 yards on the ground as Franklin also rushed for
Cody Gokan (Round Lake, Ill./Mundelein H.S.) finished with a team-high 13 tackles
for the Crusaders while Alex Soller
(Michigan City, Ind./Michigan City H.S.)
added 11 stops, including two for loss.
Valparaiso (0-2) will return home to Brown Field next Saturday
evening as the Crusaders host region rival Saint Joseph’s
(Ind.). Kickoff is set for 7 p.m. on Communiversity
Day at Valparaiso.
Game Notes: Gokan
has 30 tackles on the season already … Crawford now has 11 career interceptions
… Franklin leads the all-time series 11-3, and has won four straight meetings … Valpo recorded 14 tackles for loss on the
afternoon … Mike Gerton (Mundelein,
Ill./Mundelein H.S.) caught a 56-yard pass, Valpo’s longest offensive play of