The only thing that could stop Kenai Central running back Bill Chimphalee Saturday afternoon against Houston turned out to be his own coach.
Chimphalee ran for 335 yards on 24 carries and scored seven touchdowns. Then the halftime whistle sounded. Just 60 yards from the state’s single-game rushing record, Chimphalee didn’t touch the ball in the second half, but it hardly mattered, as the Kardinals defeated the Houston Hawks 65-7.
“We’re going to count on Bill to carry the ball 35, 40 times a game later in the season, so we wanted to give it to him a lot in the first half,” Jim Beeson, Kenai’s coach, told the Mat-Su Valley Frontiersman. “But this isn’t about personal accomplishments, and he’d be the first person to say that, too. The game was already decided. No, I never thought about putting him back out there.”
On Kenai’s first play from scrimmage, Chimphalee scored on a 51-yard run. He followed it up with scoring gallops of 21, 46 and 34 yards, finishing with 198 yards and four touchdowns in the first quarter alone. The second quarter was just as impressive for Chimphalee, as he added three more rushing touchdowns.
The Hawks rushed for a total of minus 16 yards during the game. But quarterback Ryan Thamm and receiver Donovan Parker hooked up four times for 91 yards, including the Hawks’ lone touchdown, in the third quarter.
The loss was the first for the Hawks this season, and they have yet to drop a conference game this season in the Great Land Conference.
Kardinals 65, Hawks 7
Kenai 28 21 7 9 65
Houston 0 0 7 0 7
Ken Chimphalee 51 run (Ward kick) 10:24
Ken Chimphalee 21 run (Ward kick) 5:09
Ken Chimphalee 46 run (Ward kick) 4:39
Ken Chimphalee 34 run (Ward kick) 1:18
Ken Chimphalee 23 run (Ward kick) 9:52
Ken Chimphalee 1 run (Ward kick) 4:52
Ken Chimphalee 6 run (Ward kick) 1:02
Hou Parker 22 pass from Thamm (Gardner kick) 8:43
Ken Narlock 4 run (Ward kick) 5:34
Ken Safety, Houston tackled in end zone on blocked punt, 6:44
Ken Narlock 14 run (Ward kick) 4:44
Rushing Kenai: Chimphalee 24-335, Narlock 12-63, Graham 7-53, Ward 1-6, Gustkey 205, Booth 1-3. Houston: Steed 6-10, 35 13-3, Sumner 4-(-2), Thamm 5-(-27).
Passing Kenai: Ward 1-2-0-7. Houston: Thamm 4-10-1-91.
Receiving Kenai: Pierce 1-7. Houston: Parker 4-91.
Soldotna 61, Ketchikan 6
Eight different Soldotna players found the end zone Saturday as the Stars crushed the Ketchikan Kings 61-6 Saturday in Soldotna.
Soldotna head coach Sarge Truesdell said he was able to rest his team for much of the game, relying on mostly players from the jayvee squad to finish out the game.
“Our varsity starters got one or two reps in the second quarter and that was about it,” Truesdell said.
Marvin Tate scored two touchdowns within 22 seconds of each other to open the scoring for SoHi in the first quarter. Tate got his first touchdown on a 3-yard run, then picked up a Ketchikan fumble on the ensuing drive and returned it for a score to put SoHi up 14-0.
Richard Hatt, Bryce Gardner, Anthony Griglione, Spencer Tachick, Chris Nolden and Justice Elson each scored rushing touchdowns for Soldotna, which moved to 2-0 in the Northern Lights Conference and 3-1 overall with the win. Jake Jansen also added a 30-yard interception return.
Gardner was SoHi’s leading rusher, getting 79 yards on just three carries. Nolden added 68 yards on 11 carries for a balanced Soldotna attack that outgained Ketchikan 370-64 on the ground.
Soldotna’s next game is a big NLC showdown with Homer in Homer Saturday at 2 p.m. The Mariners are 1-0 in the conference, while Soldotna will be looking to stay undefeated in the NLC and take command of the playoff race.
“They always play us tough,” Truesdell said of the Mariners.
He added that the Homer game is made even bigger by the fact that Soldotna still has NLC heavyweights Kenai and Skyview left to play in what is shaping up to be a tight race for conference’s two playoff spots.
“We really need the Homer game,” he said.
Stars 61, Kings 6
Soldotna 28 19 6 7 61
Ketchikan 0 0 0 6 6
Sol Tate 3 run (Griglione kick), 10:25
Sol Tate 14 fumble recovery (Griglione kick), 10:03
Sol Hatt 27 run (Griglione kick), 1:48
Sol Gardner 37 run (Elson kick), :07
Sol Griglione 38 run (kick failed), 9:49
Sol Tachick 1 run (kick failed), 7:15
Sol Nolden 9 run (Elson kick), 3:20
Sol Jansen 30 interception return (Elson kick), 4:05
Ket Ashcroft 1 run (run failed), 9:14
Sol Elson 5 run (Elson kick), 2:37
First downs 16 8
Rushes-yards 33-370 17-64
Passing yards 28 112
Passing 2-7-0 10-28-2
Punts-avg 0-0.0 5-20.4
Fumbles lost 1 2
Penalties-yards 9-70 4-22
Rushing Soldotna: Gardner 3-79, Nolden 11-68, Elson 5-55, Hatt 2-41, Griglione 2-39, Tate 4-35, Jensen 1-23, Morris 1-15, Ciufo 3-14, Tachick 1-1. Ketchikan: Ashcroft 4-28, Borup 4-19, Ginter 4-19, Albertson 5-(-2).
Passing Soldotna: Griglione 2-7-0-28. Ketchikan: Ashcroft 10-28-2-112.
Receiving Soldotna: Story 1-19, Tate 1-9. Ketchikan: Borup 6-86, Cota 3-24, Martin 1-3.
Homer 21, Seward 0
Noah McWilliams, Billy Crump and Corey Sutherland each scored touchdowns as Homer picked up a nonconference win Friday in Seward. McWilliams and Crump each scored on rushing touchdowns, while Sutherland got his on a touchdown pass.
The game was tight at the half, with Homer clinging to a 7-0 lead. But two third quarter touchdowns helped put things out of reach for the Mariners, which remained undefeated with the win.
The Mariners are now 4-0 on the season and 1-0 in the NLC heading into next Saturday’s conference game against SoHi.
Mat-Su Valley Frontiersman reporter Casey Ressler contributed to this report.
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