Sept. 4, 2010
Rivals unite, and conquer
By Rick Weegman
Central? Denfeld? By whatever name people choose
to call the new combined high school football team that merged students
from the two rival schools, they can be called pretty good.
The Central Trojans — which all athletic
programs at the school will be known by this season — defeated
Hermantown 21-0 on Friday night at Public Schools Stadium, dominating
all aspects on offense and defense in the teams’ season opener.
Central scored two touchdowns in an 11-second
span of the third quarter to break a scoreless deadlock, and kept
the Hawks off the scoreboard despite committing five turnovers.
“First game, two schools coming together,
we did pretty good,” junior running back Nate Beaulieu said.
“We had a little rough start, but we finished strong.”
C.J. Ham gained 107 yards on 15 carries and Beaulieu
added 75 yards on 13 attempts as the Trojans piled up almost 300
yards on the ground.
“The kids were ready to play,” Central
coach Chris Vold said. “They’ve been chomping at the
bit since June, and you could see it in their eyes all day. The
excitement, energy and enthusiasm were great.”
The Trojans turned the ball over four times in
the first half, but they held a 143-60 edge in total yards.
“It was a little bit frustrating, you’re
moving the ball and then turn it over,” Vold said. “The
defense played great keeping them out of the end zone … but
the turnovers are inexcusable.”
After the defense held the Hawks to a second three-and-out
in the third quarter, Central went 50 yards in three plays to take
the lead. Jeff Ohaju ran 34 yards in two carries and Tony Klaas
rumbled into the end zone from 16 yards out to make it 6-0.
Graham Whiting jumped on a loose ball on the ensuing
kickoff and Beaulieu scampered 23 yards on the first play for another
“That was a big swing,” Hawks coach
Daryl Illikainen said. “At 6-0, I thought we still had some
momentum, but that took the wind out of our sails.”
Ham covered the final 3 yards of an eight-play
drive early in the fourth quarter to seal the victory.
Hermantown quarterback Cody Baker was carted off
the field after being injured on the next drive. Illikainen said
Baker was moving and that he was taken to a hospital for precautionary
At the end of the game, the Trojans celebrated
with their fans — those wearing Central colors and those wearing
“We’re all one team now,” Ham
Hermantown ................... 0-0-0-0—0
Duluth Central .............. 0-0-14-7—21
DC — Tony Klaas 16 run (run failed)
DC — Nate Beaulieu 23 run (C.J. Ham run)
DC— Ham 3 run (Jeff Ohaju kick)