Lakewood blanks Granite Falls on the gridiron

LAKEWOOD — Things started a little slow for the Cougars Sept. 24, but that didn’t stop them from having the most dominant result in a half of a decade.

Lakewood pitched a shutout on the gridiron for the first time in five years, winning 27-0 over Granite Falls.

“It was something we have really been working hard for,” said Lakewood coach Dan Teeter, who is 4-0 for the first time at Lakewood. “We’ve been close a few times this year, but we have been a broken play or a kick return away.”

The Cougars were so formidable that Granite Falls was unable to get a first down the entire second half.

But the whole game wasn’t that way, as the Tigers halted the Cougars’ first quarter drives inside the red zone, and ran the time off the clock with a 21-play drive lasting nearly eight minutes.

“The first quarter flew by and it was definitely Granite Falls’ style of play,” Teeter said.

It wasn’t until Lakewood blocked a field goal at the conclusion of that long drive that the Cougars woke up, as Justin Peterson returned it 71 yards for a touchdown.

“That was a huge momentum swing for us,” Teeter said. “And then we came out after that and scored on a 90-yard drive, that took the wind out of (the Tigers).”

Peterson scored the Cougars’ next TD, catching Justin Lane’s seven-yard pass to make the score 16-0.

The Cougars added a 25-yard field goal by Eric Murray in the third quarter, and another touchdown with Lane finding Brandon Stott for a five-yard score.

Lane finished the day completing 9 of 25 pass attempts for 106 yards, but the Cougars relied on the running game, as they compiled 238 yards on 38 attempts. Christian Melton led the way on the ground with 73 yards on 13 carries.

Lakewood now turns its attention to a meeting with top-ranked Archbishop Murphy Oct. 1. Both undefeated teams will face off in a conference game that could end up deciding the title.

“We’re excited because we’ve been preparing all offseason to beat ‘Bishop.,” Teeter said. “But it’s going to take playing our best for all four quarters, and we haven’t done that yet.”

Teeter said the game is likely to fringe on winning the fight in the trenches, as Archbishop Murphy’s offensive and defensive line are near the best in the state.

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