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Despite penalties and miscues, North Mahaska had chances to score in the season football opener at West Central Valley Friday but came up short 7-0. A late first half score capped off a 38-yard drive that took nearly five minutes off the clock.

North Mahaska’s biggest penalty of the night came after sophomore Braden Steel picked off West Central’s Nate Gerling who ran the ball into Wildcat territory only to have the ball come back on an illegal block in the back. The call brought the ball back to the North Mahaska 21.

The drive moved the ball into Wildcat territory to the 43-yard line. The ball was hiked over quarterback Sam Terpstra’s head and recovered by the Wildcats at the NM 38.

“We made too many mistakes,” said North Mahaska coach Phil Griffin in a postgame radio interview. “It was a defensive rock ’em and sock ’em game. We had three goal line stands. Trace Goemaat, a junior heavyweight wrestler and Ashton Meland really just played hard. A sophomore Gage Vande Voort, who didn’t play last year, is coming on as well.”

Besides the two interceptions, North Mahaska stopped Wildcat drives at the NM 26, 25 and 32-yard line. Each team had the ball once in the fourth quarter. North Mahaska’s drive stalled at its own 34.

After the punt WCV started from their own 32-yard line and controlled the ball for the final 8 minutes 46 seconds ending the game at the NM 5.

North Mahaska (0-1) will travel to rival Lynnville-Sully on Friday. The Hawks lost their season opener against Pleasantville, 13-7.