North Mahaska was hoping to pick up another win as they defended their home soil Friday against Class 1A foe Central Decatur. Both Teams racked up more than 280 yards in offense but four interceptions by Central Decatur, two for touchdowns proved too much for the Warhawks in a 35-16 loss.
North Mahaska’s rushing game was scuttled amassing just 96 yards. NM again was hurt by penalties in the contest. They committed a block in the back on the opening kickoff and had to start at their own 12-yard line. Another penalty in the drive forced a punt after gaining just one yard.
CD started on the North Mahaska 38-yard line and five plays later Kale Rockhold, who rushed for 134 yards scored the first of his three scores on a 16-yard run. On North Mahaska’s next possession, he intercepted a pass and scored another TD to put the Cardinals up 14-0 at the end of the first period. CD added another touchdown on a long pass play just before halftime.
Rockhold devastated the NM faithful 20 seconds into the second half on a 71-yard scamper to give the Cardinals a 28-0 advantage.
Late in the third period Asher DeBoef hooked up on a Lucas Nunnikhoven pass play for 74 yards to erase the goose egg on the scoreboard. The 2-point conversion by Kaleb Stout cut the lead.
North Mahaska’s defense kept the Cardinals grounded and on NM’s first possession of the fourth period Stout plunged in from the 1-yard line and DeBoef added the conversion to cut the edge 28-16. The score capped off a 57-yard drive.
Nunnikhoven and his teammates executed a perfect onside kick and took over at the Cardinal 49-yard line with 4 minutes 34 seconds to play. On a third down and goal inside the 10-yard line a Nunnikhoven pass went off the hands of the receiver and into the hands of Cord Hamilton who ran untouched 95 yards for the game’s final tally.
North Mahaska outgained the Cardinals 285-283 overall. NM won the passing game 189-111 but CD rushed for 172 yards to 96 for the Warhawks. Stout and Nunnikhoven led the Nm rushers with 44 yards each.
DeBoef grabbed seven passes for 115 yards. Hunter Wernli had one for 31 and Nate Sampson caught two for 23. Nunnikhoven was 9-for-22 passing with a touchdown and four interceptions.
Defensively, Nunnikhoven and Trenton Hol led in tackles with seven and six respectively. Hol had two sacks while Chance Angle had 1.5.
Central Decatur was led by Rockhold with 134 yards rushing and 46 yards receiving.
North Mahaska (1-2, 0-2) will travel to Martensdale-St. Marys (0-3) next week.