By Tony Chapman
PALMER — Back on their own after a 2019 state football championship with High Plains, the Osceola football team has big aspirations for 2020.
It mostly revolves around running the football behind an experienced line.
And, on Friday night in Palmer, they put it on full display.
Tailback Bryce Reed scored six touchdowns, including a 65-yard romp on the first play of the game, and ran for 321 yards on 26 carries in the third-ranked Bulldogs 74-36 win over the Tigers.
Despite Palmer’s 1-3 record coming in — all three losses were to ranked teams — Osceola coach Bob Fuller knew it was a game his team needed.
“We knew they were going to be a heck of a football team,” Fuller said. “We needed to play a four quarter football game and this was one.
“I thought our guys up front did a heck of a job all night for us. They have each other’s back. They really love playing with each other.”
In total, the Bulldogs ran for 605 yards on 65 carries behind lineman Corby Cannon, Kane Benson, Carter Girard, Kyle Sterup and Thad Rathjen. They also send backs Carson Watts and Xavier Blackburn over 100 yards as well.
The Tigers, however, were step for step for a while. They tied the game at 24 early in the second quarter when Jayden Perchal scored on a 36-yard run.
“They did a really good job of making some adjustments on defense,” Palmer coach Nathan Glause said. “Our kids responded really well. I knew we’d have a real hard time stopping them, but we just put the ball on the ground a few too many times on offense.”
Osceola (5-0) was near perfect on offense.
Palmer stopped them on downs right before Perchal tied the game but that was the only other time save for the end of each half. They had 27 first downs and quarterback Isaiah Zelasney was 3-for-4 passing for 88 yards, including a 41-yard toss to Reed that gave Osceola a two score lead for good with 4:09 left before half.
“Palmer did a great job of playing different fronts at us and we had to make adjustments,” Fuller said. “I am real pleased with this win. We knew this would be a great test.
“They have just had a murderers row kind of schedule. They have the kids to win some playoff games.”
Palmer quarterback Karson Reimers threw for two scores and ran for two more while throwing for 98 yards and running for 101.
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