Last week I had the assignment to
cover the high school football game featuring
The Ames Little Cyclones started the game off with some big momentum after the first three plays as ISU recruit RB Zac Sandvig was stopped after running the ball three straight carries gaining only seven yards. That wasn't the biggest news, but rather Sandvig suffered what would be a game ending ankle injury that left him on the sidelines the rest of the game. There was no worrying on the Valley sidelines as they knew there was a secret weapon coming into the game. This was none other than rising star sophomore running back, Joe Johnson.
Valley stopped Austen Arnaud on
oe Johnson ran extremely hard and
was breaking tackles, especially when
Johnson finished with five TD's and carried the ball 21 times for 162 yards. Not bad for a backup. This I know, the Hawks and Cyclones better be watching this one as you can't teach quickness around the edges, just look at this years Cyclones as wouldn't it be nice to have a back who can blaze around the corner?
Prize ISU recruit QB Austen Arnaud did not have a very good day. He had a rough start to the game completing one pass in his first seven attempts. There were only a couple dropped balls as he mostly over threw his receivers. He did however gather himself and with his team trailing 21-0, he lead them on an important drive and capped it with an awesome sell to the running back and touch pass over the middle to his receiver Bret Ballantine who finished with three catches for 60-yards and the 25-yard touchdown pass.
Ames got the ball back still trailing 21-7, and drove again to the Valley 12 where Arnaud was looking at a 2nd & 7. He faked the handoff to RB Nathan Grieving and then rolled to his right and tossed a spiral to his receiver who was wide open in the end zone, only to see it dropped. The next play Arnaud for about the first time I've seen all year misfired badly on a screen pass that should've been picked for the distance but was tipped down.
Valley's defense did an excellent job in containing Arnaud who rushed the ball six times for only 31 yards. He finished the game throwing 15-of-28 with one INT and 140 yards. Nathan Grieving finished with 56 yards on 15 carries and was harassed all night.
For Valley, they are the team to beat in Class 4A as their defense up front has tremendous speed. ISU recruit DE Patrick Neal had a really good game as his pass rush prevented Arnaud from getting on track. He did not record a sack but was in on many tackles and had a pass break up that may have been intercepted if Arnaud doesn't normally throw the screen pass.
All in all, this wasn't a very good night for ISU fans as Sandvig was injured, Arnaud's team lost 42-14 and the real Cyclones lost the following day.