DEERFIELD — It was a one-two punch, and a quick combination at that, that allowed Fall River/Rio to send Deerfield to the mat Oct. 4.
Behind a three-touchdown performance from Rebel senior Teagan Prochnow and two rushing scores from senior teammate Nick Larson, Fall River/Rio jumped out to a 35-0 first-half lead en route to a 35-14 Trailways Small victory over the Demons.
Prochnow and Larson couldn’t be stopped as the Rebels (3-4, 1-3 Trailways) scored on their first five first-half possessions. Prochnow would finish with 178 yards on 20 carries and Larson ended with 114 yards on 15 tries.
“Our backs did a good job but I have to give a lot of credit to our big guys up front,” said Rebel coach Cody Schultz. “They (the offensive line) don’t always get the credit they deserve. But when you have two horses like that (Prochnow and Larson) and the line can block the way it did that makes a difference.”
Fall River/Rio’s defense and special teams also earned words of praise from Schultz as they forced three turnovers, two of which led to scores.
Larson started the first-half scoring barrage with a 10-yard TD run and Prochnow made it 14-0 when he hauled in a Carson Richardson screen pass and bowled over defenders to score from 7 yards out.
A Demon fumble on their following possession, recovered by the Rebels’ Dakota Johnson, saw Larson cap a 40-yard drive with a 22-yard touchdown run with 8:32 left in the half. Deerfield’s miscues were far from over. The Demons fumbled the ensuing kickoff when Fall River/Rio’s Gavin Grams forced the fumble which teammate Payton Neuman recovered on the Deerfield 37. Prochnow capped the drive with a 2-yard run and he would add his third TD on a 7-yard run with 42 seconds left in the first half.
In the first half, the Demons (2-5, 0-4) mounted only one scoring threat, driving down to the Rebel 6-yard line in the first quarter, only to be stopped on downs.
“Our defense did a good job of holding strong,” Schultz said. “There was a bend but we didn’t break.”
The Rebels limited the Demons to 198 total yards, the bulk coming in the second half when the game was well in hand. Jacob Rowe would add a second-half interception to the Rebels’ turnover total.
Deerfield pushed across its first score late in the third quarter on a 10-yard run by Bene Lemke and another score came against the Fall River reserves with 54 seconds remaining in the game. That score came on a 14-yard run by Tyler Haak.
Fall River/Rio amassed 399 total yards — 314 on the ground — and Richardson, a senior quarterback, finished hitting on 4-of-7 pass attempts for 85 yards and one touchdown.
The Demons’ Haak ran for 106 yards on 13 carries. He also hauled in two passes for 68 yards.
The win over Deerfield was big on two fronts for the Rebels. It marked their first conference win, and second, it kept their slim playoff hopes alive with Cambria-Friesland next up on the schedule.
“I’m not even going to talk about playoffs,” Schultz said. “Right now it’s one game at a time. One game at a time.
“We’ll focus on the process and the outcome will take care of itself,” he said.
FALL RIVER/RIO 35, DEERFIELD 14</&hspag2>
Fall River/Rio 14 21 0 0 — 35
Deerfield 0 0 6 8 — 14
FRR — Nick Larson 10 run (Christian Perez kick) 9:11
FRR — Teagan Prochnow 7 pass from Carson Richardson (Christian Perez kick) 51.7
FRR — Nick Larson 22 run (Christian Perez kick) 8:32
FRR — Teagan Prochnow 2 run (Christian Perez kick) 4:40
FRR — Teagan Prochnow 7 run (Christian Perez kick)
DER — Bene Lemke 10 run (run failed) 1:24
DER — Tyler Haak 14 run (Tommy Lees, pass from Tyler Haak) 54.3
First Downs — FRR 18, D 9. Rushes-Yards — FRR 46-314, D 32-164. Passing (Comp-Att-Int) — FRR 4-7-0, D 5-14-1. Passing Yards — FRR 26, D 101. Fumbles-Lost — FRR 2-0, D 2-2. Penalty Yards — FRR 120, D 50. Total Yards — FRR 399, D 198.
RUSHING: D, Haak 13-106. FRR, Prochnow 20-178, Larson 15-114.