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Football: Agates throttle Titans

Greenway/Naskwauk-Keewatin senior Aksel Jensen (32) is brought down by Two Harbors freshman Jacob Keech (89) and junior Wyatt Haugan (1) during a game Friday, Sept. 29, 2017 in Two Harbors. (News-Chronicle photo by Adelle Whitefoot)1 / 3
Two Harbors senior Spencer Ross (34) stiff arms Greenway/Naskwauk-Keewatin senior Corey Warwas (20) during a game Sept. 29, 2017 in Two Harbors. (News-Chronicle photo by Adelle Whitefoot)2 / 3
Two Harbors senior Spencer Ross ran in four touchdowns against Greenway/Naskwauk-Keewatin Friday, Sept. 29, 2017 in Two Harbors. (News-Chronicle photo by Adelle Whitefoot)3 / 3

Two Harbors senior running back Spencer Ross scored four touchdowns and had 221 yards rushing to lead the Agates to a 42-0 homecoming win over Greenway/Nashwauk-Keewatin Sept. 29 in Two Harbors.

Ross went over 1,000 yards for the season and now has 12 touchdowns this year, but the bigger story is the improved Agate defense. The game against the Titans was the first shutout, but Two Harbors has not allowed more than 14 points in any game this season and opponents have scored a combined 46 points over six games this season.

"We've said all along, we're athletic, we're not the biggest on either side of the ball, but we're athletic and we feel like we have 11 athletes on defense that can fly around and make plays.

We're trying to play to our strengths, which is athleticism and quickness," coach Tom Nelson said. "We're not the biggest, we're not always the strongest or the fastest, but we feel like we have 11 guys who are pretty darn solid, pretty darn good athletes."

Ross put the Agates up with his first touchdown of the night on a two yard from with about 2 minutes left in the first quarter. On the ensuing kickoff, Two Harbors recovered a short kick mishandled by the Titans and five plays later Logan Loiselle caught a 24 yard touchdown pass from Ryan Darsow.

Ross scored twice more in the second quarter and scored on the opening drive of the second half.

Mason Meyer scored from 20 yards out to cap a 62 yard drive and end the scoring.

The Agate defense held GNK without a first down until the final 30 seconds of the first half and allowed just a handful throughout the game.

"We knew their bread and butter plays," Nelson said. "They go up the middle, they go off tackle, that's their bread and butter. We prepared for that throughout the week, the coaches did a great job and players did their job. They studied, they focused on it and it was a good defensive game plan that coach (Bill) Anderson and the rest of the coaches put in and they just executed, plain and simple. We tell the kids we can't play it for them, and they did. They did the job, they did the hard part."

Nelson also credited the work Two Harbors players put in throughout the year in the weight room.

"People have to realize, these guys have busted their butt in the weight room all year round. They made themselves be able to compete," he said. "If they wouldn't be in the weight room, they couldn't compete because they aren't naturally big and strong."

Meyer, the Agates top tackler so far this season, said the he and teammates are trying to stay aggressive this season and using their team speed and athleticism to disrupt plays.

"Most of the time, teams are a lot bigger than us and we're just using our speed and athleticism to get around there and playing really aggressive, taking the fight to them instead of them taking it to us," Meyer said. "We've been putting a lot of time in practicing the plays beforehand so we know what's coming."

Two Harbors (5-1) will face International Falls at 7 p.m. today in International Falls.

Jamey Malcomb

Jamey Malcomb started as a reporter for the Lake County News-Chronicle in August 2015. Malcomb is a native of North Carolina and holds a bachelor's degree in English and history from the George Washington University and a master's degree in education from George Mason University in Fairfax, Va. Malcomb moved to Minnesota in July 2012 and previously worked as a sports clerk and news assistant at the Duluth News Tribune. He is the beat writer for the Lake County Board of Commissioners, Silver Bay City Council and high school sports in Lake County. 

(218) 834-2141
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