Foos, Redmen stop Tornadoes

BELLEVUE – There was no stopping Alec Foos Friday night.

Bellevue’s quarterback made an early statement, breaking off some big runs and scoring two rushing touchdowns in the game’s first four minutes.

He and the Redmen were too much for Columbian, as Bellevue rolled to a 48-14 win over the Tornadoes.

Foos had a remarkable first half in which he had three touchdowns and 234 yards on the ground. He finished with four scores and 258 yards.

Bellevue improved to 4-1. It was its first NOL game of the season.

“We just do what the defense gives us,” said Bellevue coach Ed Nasonti. “It changes from week to week, from play to play depending on how they’re playing us, so we just felt (the running game) was there and took advantage of it.”

Foos wasn’t the only one to take advantage.

Bryce Ray had 12 carries for 108 yards and a score, while Dakota McPeak had a 47-yard touchdown run in finishing with 56 yards. Ethan Hundley got in on a late drive and ran seven times for 74 yards and a score.

By the time the game was over, the Redmen had put up 517 rushing yards overall.

Nasonti credited his offensive line for much of that success.

“I felt our guys got stronger as the game went along,” Nasonti said.

While the game ended with a running clock, there were some positives for Columbian. After giving up the two early touchdowns, it thwarted another Bellevue drive by forcing and recovering a fumble at the 8-yard line.

One play later, TC quarterback Todd Simonds hit Jared Akers on a screen, and Akers took off down the sideline, finally being tackled by McPeak inside the Bellevue 10.

The 84-yard catch-and-run set up the Tornadoes first touchdown, a two-yard pass from Simonds to Daniel Bupp. At the time it cut Bellevue’s lead to 16-7.

Things looked even better after the Tornadoes halted the ensuing Redmen march. Foos led the Redmen down to the Columbian 9 early in the second quarter, but TC’s Tyler Eisenhower stepped in front of a Foos pass and picked it off.

But Columbian’s offense failed to capitalize. Simonds completed 14 of 31 passes for 230 yards and two touchdowns, but he was intercepted three times in the first half – twice by McPeak – and lost a fumble on a center exchange.

“We’re doing some good things on offense, and the defense is coming together,” Columbian coach Judd Lutz said after his team slipped to 1-4, 0-2 in the NOL. “I thought they played really hard, made (the Redmen) earn what they had to and forced some key turnovers that kept us in it at times.”

The Tornadoes had a pair of big outings from receivers. Akers caught five passes for 121 yards, and Donnell Brockington had a breakout performance. He finished with six catches for 96 yards, and collected TC’s second touchdown of the night on a 34-yard throw from Simonds.

“He is great in space, a really good blocker,” Lutz said of the sophomore. “We’re excited about how physical he is in the perimeter. When he gets his hands on the ball, he’s done some really good things.”

But Lutz said the Tornadoes miscues were too much to overcome.

“It’s hard to win a game when you lose the turnover battle,” Lutz said. “We’ve got to work on those things, coach those things up and get better on Monday.”