WYOMING - You couldn’t fault the Midland football team for their bit of a slow start hosting Central City Friday, Oct. 2.
Eagle coach Lennie Miller was experimenting with some plays his offensive unit wasn’t too familiar with, but when Miller decided to return to the regular script, his Midland team tore through the Wildcats just like he hoped and knew they would on homecoming night in Wyoming.
“The boys played a great game,” said Miller, as his team went on a 52-6 run to close out a huge 58-12 victory.
“We started our first offensive series with stuff that we hadn’t spent a lot of time on, then we went back and started running our old stuff things just took off from there.”
Midland (3-2) received the football first and quickly went 3-and-out and were forced to punt handing the ball over to Central City, who marched down the field and tried a long 41-yard field goal to take an early lead.
The kick was long enough, but missed to the left setting the Eagle offense up in ideal position.
They quickly took advantage as quarterback Carson Hunter wrapped a 7-play, 65-yard drive with a 24-yard scoring scamper.
Two possessions later the Eagles were back in the end zone again as Cayden Miller exploded through the Wildcat defense and raced 44 yards into the end zone and the hosts quickly led 12-0, but the double-digit advantage didn’t last long.
The Wildcats found the end zone next, and trailed just 12-6 at the first quarter horn before the hosts completely took the contest over in the second stanza.
Midland scored three touchdowns and tallied 22 points in the frame to take a commanding 34-6 lead into the halftime break.
Jamisen Dodge hauled in a 25-yard scoring strike from Hunter to get the fun started, then Miller added another 44-yard run to once again find paydirt.
After Iziek Soper gave the hosts two more points tackling a Central City player in the end zone, Miller scored yet again, this time from one-yard out to put the hosts firmly in control.
“We decided to try and work on some things early because we were extremely confident in our offense and defense to be able to play well,” Miller said. “This thing played out pretty much like we though it would. The only punt we had in the entire game was from that first series.”
Midland opened the second half with another touchdown when Hunter crossed the goal line from 10-yards out and the Eagles led 42-6.
The Wildcats followed with their second and final score of the game before Jake Arnell and Miller ended the scoring for the hosts with fourth quarter touchdowns.
“With the way our defense is playing right now, I think we can stack up against just about anybody,” Miller said. “They did it again Friday night and are just functioning at a very high level.”
Midland held Central City to a mere 147 yards of total offense, including 76 yards on the ground on 31 attempts.
The Eagle offense was soaring all night long accumulating 495 total yards, led by a huge 287-yard rushing game from Miller.
“Cayden is really starting to understand his running back role on this team and how we need him to perform,” Miller said. “It’s fun watching this all come together this season. I said at the start of the season that we are going to be a much better football team at the end than we were at the beginning, and that’s exactly how it’s playing out. The kids are figuring things out, and that just took time.
“I think we’re about to turn the corner and hopefully be a surprise team in the playoffs.”
Soper led the Eagle defense making eight tackles while also forcing a fumble. Hunter and Brayden Grau picked off Wildcat passes while Caden Ballou, Jensen Orr and Ethan Paulsen added fumble recoveries for a Midland defense that forced five turnovers.