PREP FOOTBALL: Fargo North sprints past Central
FARGO -- Fargo North had a week off before the Spartans hosted Grand Forks Central on Friday night. The rest helped North. It didn't do much for the Knights. Sophomore running back Peter Saintal put on a show and the defense dominated as North cr...
FARGO -- Fargo North had a week off before the Spartans hosted Grand Forks Central on Friday night.
The rest helped North. It didn't do much for the Knights.
Sophomore running back Peter Saintal put on a show and the defense dominated as North cruised to a 34-14 win in front of the homecoming crowd.
"It's just good to get our kids back on the field," North head coach Kelly Kalina said. "Kids get eager to play football."
Prior to having last week off, the Spartans were coming off a pair of tough losses to quality opponents.
Those losses came to Hill-Murray, which entered Friday 3-0 in Minnesota Class 4A, and Fargo South, the top-ranked team in North Dakota Class 3A
There wasn't much the Knights could do about the schedule or Saintal.
"That's just the way the schedule is set up," Central coach Bill Lorenz said. "North is low on numbers like us, so in that sense the bye week helped."
Saintal got a boost from his linemen, as well.
"They took it to us," Lorenz said. "Like that old saying goes, 'The game is won in the trenches.' That was the case tonight.
"And once Saintel got into the open, we didn't have anyone that could catch him. We knew that by watching film.
The Spartans came out of the gates slowly, as both teams failed to get much going offensively in the first quarter.
Any rust the offense appeared to have in the early going was gone by the time the second quarter started.
Saintal took the first snap of the quarter and slashed up the middle untouched for a 47-yard score. That was followed with an equally easy 50-yard touchdown a few minutes later.
By the time the half ended, North was up 26-0.
"Our guys finally realized we needed to play some football," Kalina said. "We made some adjustments on plays we were calling to what they were doing and it ended up working out."
Saintal finished with 226 yards for North (2-2) on 18 carries.
"I think he's just understanding the game of football," Kalina said. "He's just going to continually get better.
"I think the key for him in our offense is that he hits the hole really fast and does a good job once he gets through that first level," Kalina said.
Central's two touchdowns came in the fourth quarter. Alec Lazur scored both TDs, one on a 4-yard run and the other on a 17-yard run.
Lorenz said the Knights received a good effort from quarterback Gage Salquist, who completed 8-of-16 passes.
"He was under a pressure a lot of the time," Lorenz said. "And he had a few passes dropped."
Central, 0-5, returns home Friday for a game against Duluth East.