NEW ULM - Martin County West gave notice to the Southern Minnesota Conference Thursday night.
They will be a force in their first year in the conference.
Quarterback Jake Faber ran for three touchdowns and passed for another as the Mavericks scored 20 first quarter points and went on to topple New Ulm Cathedral 42-20 in a Southern Minnesota Conference game.
Staff photo by Steve Muscatello
New Ulm Cathedral quarterback Collin Helget (10) breaks through the tackle of Wesley Cook of Martin County West on Thursday at Johnson Field in New Ulm.
For more photos of this event go to cu.nujournal.com
Faber scored on a pair of one yard runs and added a 12 yard jaunt while he passed for a 19-yard score.
MCW also added scores on san 80 yard kick-off return by Sam Baker and ran an intercetion back 93 yards for another touchdown.
MCW ended with 265 yards rushing.
Bryan Koksech, Nick Stadick and Michael Skllings scored touchdowns for the Greyhounds.
Skillings led Cathedral with 119 yards rushing on 13 carries with Austin Cooper and Gabe Knowles adding 63 and 62 yards respectively.
"Give them a lot of credit," said Cathedral coach Denny Lux. "They have some very good athletes and their quarterback (Jake Faber) runs their offense so well -they have some nice receivers and they have a nice package. They played a good game against us."
Both teams exchanged touchdowns on their first possessions with the Mavericks scoring on a 12 yard run by Faber on the opening drive of the game with Bryan Kokesch capping a 50 yard, eight play drive on a two yard touchdown run.
But Martin County West would establish an advantage by scoring the next four touchdowns to take a 34-8 lead midway through the third quarter.
After Kokesch's touchdown run, Sam Baker returned the ensuing kick-off 80 yards down the right sideline for a 14-8 lead.
A one yard run by Faber with 1:12 left in the first quarter increased the lead to 20-8 before s 93- yard interception return off a tipped Collin Helget pass by Wesley Cook made it a 28-8 lead at halftme.
Faber's third touchdown run at the 8:57 mark of the third period moved MCW to that 34-8 cushion.
"Our kids made plays tonight and for our first game of the year I could not ask more," said Martin County West coach T.J. Schmidtke. "We thought that we could run the ball on them - we have four of our five (offensive) linemen returning. We have that big, physical quarterback."
He also acknowledged that the two big plays of a kick-off return and an interception return both were momentun-turners.
"Those turned the game around for us, " he said. 'They were coming back - they are a resilant group."
Lux said that those two plays were ones that turned the game around.
"We were in the red zone a number of times in the first half," said Lux. "But they came up and made the play I felt that we played better in the second half then we did in the first."
Nick Stadick;sa run cut the lead to 34-14 late in the third quarter before MCW and the Greyhounds matched scores with Ted Skllings breaking lose for a 12-yard TD.
"This is just game one for us," said Lux. "We had a lot of guys on the field for the first time -we had a lot of back-up players in so these are all things that will help us later."