Tritons glad to be home
Kevin Twait and the Iowa Central football team didn’t have to spend Friday on the road.
Instead, the Tritons were able to sleep in their own beds ahead of opening ICCAC play against Ellsworth here today at Dodger Stadium.
Kickoff is set for noon.
Iowa Central (0-2 overall, 0-0 in league) began the year with a six-hour bus ride to College of DuPage in Illinois. They followed that up by traveling to Kansas to face Dodge City, which was a 10-hour haul.
“You better believe our kids are excited about playing at Dodger Stadium,” Twait said. “We went over six hours east and almost 10 hours west, so the two-mile drive across town will be nice.
“We’ll have the band, the cheerleaders and the fans in the stands, so the kids are ready to play.”
The Tritons have been outscored 65-34 on the year and are averaging under 200 yards per game.
Sophomore quarterback Paul Campbell is completing 49-percent of his passes for 223 yards. He has yet to throw a touchdown and has been picked off four times.
Freeman Simmons, another sophomore, leads the rushing attack with 67 yards. Iowa Central has rushed for just 112 yards through two games.
“We have to move the ball and get first downs,” Twait said. “We want to be 50-50 with the run and the pass and we have to win the special teams battle.
“I am expecting a close game that comes down to who does the little things right.”
The Panthers (0-2, 0-0) also have yet to taste victory, falling to Coffeyville, 55-24, and Garden City, 30-7. Both of those games, though, came at home in Iowa Falls.
Paris Chambers made his first start in the loss to Coffeyville last week, completing 24 of 45 for 330 yards. He did run in three scores and connected with Marcel Williams eight times for 137 yards.
Chambers, a freshman, was a free safety through the preseason and Week 1 before being inserted into the lineup at quarterback. In high school, he led McGill-Toolen in Mobile, Alabama to a pair of state titles in Class 7A and a national ranking his senior season while being named all-state.
“It was a recruiting battle between us and Ellsworth for Paris,” Twait said. “He is a dual-threat that has some very nice wide receivers and a solid offensive line to work with. This is the best Ellsworth offense I have seen in my 21 years here.”
Tekendrick Roberson rushed for 53 yards in the loss, while Deryl Bunton added 43. Ellsworth allowed 457 yards of total offense and 28 points in the fourth quarter.
The Tritons will be trying to make the most of this not only being one of two conference games, but the only time in September they will play at home. The next two dates are at Highland and Independence, two more Kansas-based schools.
Last year, the Panthers picked up a 28-22 victory at home.
Like Iowa Central and Ellsworth, Iowa Western (0-2, 0-0) has lost its first two games of the season. The Reivers are at Fort Scott tonight.