The highest-scoring football game ever played between Spring Grove and Houston had the Lions leading 47-0 in the third quarter while the teams combined to score 57 points in that period alone. Spring Grove ultimately prevailed 60-30 in the September 2 season opener for both teams and the Lions’ 17th straight win in the series.
Starting quarterback Elijah Solum (8 for 13, 172 yards) and sophomore backup Bryce Berns (3 for 6, 159 yards) each threw for two touchdowns. Solum piloted Spring Grove to a 41-0 lead before retiring with leg cramps. After throwing a 77-yard touchdown pass for a 13-0 lead, Solum scored on foot, racing 49 yards down the sideline to make it 21-0. Solum connected with Caleb Griffin for 27 yards down to the Houston 8 yard-line, two plays before Hunter Holland carried the final five yards for a 27-0 lead just before halftime. Solum’s next aerial went down the middle to tight end Ethan Crouch for 32 yards to make it 34-0.
Jaxon Strinmoen caught three passes – one each from three different quarterbacks – both Lion signal-callers and the Houston quarterback as well. On offense (115 yards), both receptions went for touchdowns. The junior wide receiver turned a flat pass from Solum (with blocks from Griffin and Tysen Grinde) into a 77-yard sprint down the sideline to make it 13-0 late in the first quarter.
Berns’ first varsity pass was good for 38 yards to Strinmoen, who dazzled the crowd again with another sprint to the end zone (SG 47, Houston 0). Berns next threw a short pass to Braedon Solie, who sped down the sideline for 93 yards and a 54-14 Lion lead. It is the longest pass play in the Spring Grove record book. (Single-play records go back to 2002). Berns later threw 28 yards to freshman Dash Ranzenberger, who made a splendid grab in heavy traffic at the one yard-line. Berns ran it in on the next play to close the scoring.
Tysen Grinde caught three Solum passes for only 17 yards, but two of them were extraordinary receptions. Against double-coverage, his 7-yard diving sideline grab at the Houston 2 yard-line, set up Holland’s two-yard touchdown run to open the scoring on the game’s first possession. Later, two five-yard receptions helped the Lions take that 27-0 lead into intermission.
Spring Grove early attempted to establish the running game. Solum got loose for his 49-yard TD scamper, and Holland scored twice on 2-yard and 5-yard runs. But Houston limited Holland to 39 yards on 14 carries before halftime. But after intermission, Holland’s next two carries went for 13 yards and 27 yards, the latter a TD run to put SG up, 41-0. Holland finished with 78 yards on 17 carries with three touchdowns and a two-point conversion run. Griffin kicked 4 of 7 extra points.
The Lions finished with 168 yards rushing, and Houston 165. But the Lions held a 331-to-138-yard advantage through the air. Hurricane sophomore quarterback Morgan Rohweder (7-11-2) threw for two late touchdowns, but he had previously been picked off twice by Griffin and Strinmoen, the latter with a 20-yard return. On the next play, Solum passed to Crouch for a 32-yard TD (SG led 34-0).
Houston sophomore speedster Maddox Rodriguez rushed for 105 yards, most of which on a 54-yard scoring run. Freshman Grayden Beckman gained 51 yards, including a 19-yard TD run to avert the shutout (47-6). Junior Ethan Frauenkron caught three passes, two for touchdowns with 34 and 49-yard grabs.
The Hurricanes had threatened only once to score on the Spring Grove starting defense, that coming on Houston’s first possession. After the Lions had opened with an 11-play, 63-yard touchdown drive to lead 7-0, the ‘Canes went 74 yards on 12 plays down to the Lion two yard-line before the SG defensive line forced a third-down sack fumble by Emmet Engeldinger, recovered by Strinmoen. Houston would manage only one additional first down (by penalty) during its next eight possessions while falling behind 47-0.
The Hurricanes would then score 30 points (four touchdowns) on their next seven plays (four and a half minutes of clock time) against Lion reserves before the Spring Grove starting defense returned for the final 12 minutes. For the night, those starters defended with two fumble recoveries, two interceptions and five sacks among 11 tackles for loss.
SG 60, Houston 30
SG 13–14—27—6 = 60
Hou 0—0—30—0 = 30
YARDAGE (rush+pass): SG 499 (168+331), Hou 303 (165+138)
RUSHING: att.-yards (avg.):SG 37-168 (4.5); Hou 42-165 (3.9)
PASSES: comp-att-int, yds. (TD): SG 11-19-0, 331 yds. (4 TD); Hou 7-11-2, 138 yds. (2 TD)
Sacks allowed: SG 0, Hou 5
TD: SG: rush 5, pass 4; Hou: rush 2, pass 2
PAT: SG 5-9 (kick 4-7, run 1-2); Hou 3-4 (run 3-4)
TOTAL PLAYS: SG 56, Hou 53
AVG. yards per play: SG 8.9, Hou 5.7
FUMBLES – LOST: SG 7-2, Hou 8-2
TURNOVERS: SG 2, Hou 4
PENALTIES: SG 3-30, Hou 4-33
3rd downs: SG 3 for 10, Hou 2 for 11
4th downs: SG 3 for 3, Hou 0 for 0
SG 3 for 3, Hou 1 for 2
First downs: SG 18, Hou 14
Plays of 20+ yards: SG 8, Hou 6
RUSHING 37-168, 5 TD: Elijah Solum 6-97 (TD); Hunter Holland 17-78 (3 TD); Zach Brumm 7-18; Bryce Berns 2-(-3), (TD); Jacob Solum 1-(-8); team 4-(-14)
PASSING 11-19-0, 331 yds, 4 TD:
Eli Solum 8-13-0, 172 yds. 2 TD; Bryce Berns 3-6-0, 159 yds, 2TD
RECEIVING 11-331 yds, 4 TD: Jaxon Strinmoen 2-115, 2TD, Braedon Solie 1-93, TD, Caleb Griffin 2-40, Ethan Crouch 1-32, TD, Dash Ranzenberger 1-28, Tysen Grinde 3-17, Brandon Jahnke 1-6
SCORING 60: Hunter Holland 20, Jaxon Strinmoen 12, Bryce Berns 6, Elijah Solum 6, Ethan Crouch 6, Braedon Solie 6, Caleb Griffin 4
PUNTING: Tysen Grinde 3-99 (33.0)
INTERCEPTIONS 2: Jaxon Strinmoen 1-20 yds; Caleb Griffin 1-no return
FUMBLE RECOVERIES: Jaxon Strinmoen 1, Tysen Grinde 1
FUMBLES FORCED 3: Elijah Solum 1, Emmet Engeldinger 1, Jacob Olerud 1
KICKOFF RETURNS: Zach Brumm 2-30, Braedon Solie 1-27, Tysen Grinde 1-25, Troy Reinhardt 1-18
PUNT RETURNS: Tysen Grinde 4-45
SACKS 5: Emmet Engeldinger 2, Ethan Crouch 1, Elijah Solum 1, Logan Brumm 1
TACKLES for LOSS (incl. sacks) 11:
Logan Brumm 2.5, Emmet Engeldinger 2.0, Elijah Solum 2.0, Jaxon Strinmoen 1.5, Jacob Olerud 1.0, Ethan Crouch 1.0, Nathan Crouch 0.5, Ben Udstuen 0.5
TACKLES (solo + assists): Caleb Griffin 8 (5+3), Emmet Engeldinger 8 (5+3), Ethan Crouch 7 (3+4), Jacob Olerud 6 (4+2), Elijah Solum 6 (4+2), Tysen Grinde 5 (3+2), Nathan Crouch 4 (1+3), Logan Brumm 3 (2+1) Troy Reinhardt 3 (0+3), Sylas Flatin 2 (2+0), Jaxon Strinmoen 2 (1+1), Dash Ranzenberger 2 (1+1), Hunter Holland 2 (0+2), Ty Cleven 2 (0+2), Jacob Solum 2 (0+2), Zach Brumm 1 (1+0), Bryce Berns 1 (1+0), Ben Udstuen 1 (0+1), Noah Heppner 1 (0+1), Asher Liptack 1 (0+1). PASS BREAKUPS: none; BLOCKED PUNTS: