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Bemidji High football team defeats Fergus Falls 42-13

Carey Woods scored three touchdowns in Bemidji's season-opening 40-13 victory at Moorhead last week and Friday night at Fergus Falls the Lumberjacks senior picked up where he left off as he found the end zone three times in the first half to lead BHS to a 42-13 win.

On the second snap from scrimmage Woods gave notice of what was to come as he caught a pass from Mitchell Hendricks eight yards behind the line of scrimmage and outraced the secondary for the 79-yard score.

With 1:44 remaining in the quarter Woods and Hendricks connected for a 12-yard TD pass to widen the lead to 16-7.

And with 8:56 to play in the second stanza the duo teamed again, this time on a 56-yard bomb.

In eight quarters of football Woods has scored six touchdowns, five of them pass receptions from Hendricks.

"Those two are connecting very well," said BHS head coach Troy Hendricks. "Fergus Falls' linebackers were being very aggressive and defensively they had seven guys in the box to stop the run. But that opened other things for us.

"We also had some formations that singled Carey out," the coach added.

Fergus Falls and the Lumberjacks both entered Friday's contest with 1-0 records but that was about all the teams had in common.

BHS scored on its first four possessions and finished with five scores on six first-half possessions.

The special teams also made an impact as Cody Rutledge returned a punt 70 yards for a touchdown.

Except for a 54-yard touchdown run by Hayden Zenner midway through the second quarter Bemidji's defense dominated the Otters and the Lumberjacks offense made the most of its opportunities.

"Defensively we were solid," Hendricks said. "We took away everything Fergus had except that one long run."

The defense tortured Otter quarterback Zach Rengel all night and the result was a 3-for-9 performance which gained only 14 yards. The Jacks also recorded six sacks, two of them by Andrew Street.

BHS didn't take long to assume control.

Less than a minute into the action Woods caught the 79-yard touchdown pass from Hendricks. Midway through the stanza Bemidji stalled deep into Otter territory and Hendricks booted a 27-yard field goal.

The next two Lumberjacks possessions, however, ended with touchdown passes from Woods to Hendricks. The first covered 12 yards and the second was a 56-yard reception and run which gave the visitors a 22-7 lead.

"Carey is a man with a plan when he has the ball and after he catches it he is dangerous," the coach said.

"All things being equal the quarterback will look to his most dangerous weapon. In the first half Fergus wasn't giving much attention to Carey and Mitchell kept finding him."

Any hopes of a Fergus Falls comeback were put to rest with 2:31 to play as Rutledge fielded a punt along the sidelines and returned it 70 yards for the clinching score.

Zach Declusin capped the first-half scoring when he and Hendricks teamed for a 30-yard TD play.

The second half featured only one score by each team. Bemidji's was courtesy of a 14-yard run by Mitch Brown on the first play of the final period.

BHS finished with 276 yards through the passing game and Mitchell Hendricks connected on 15 of his 18 pass attempts. Woods caught seven passes for 155 yards and Declusin that the 30-yard TD.

The running game produced 55 yards on 30 rushes.

The Lumberjacks make their home debut Friday when they entertain St. Cloud Apollo at 7 p.m.

Bemidji 42, Fergus Falls 13

Bemidji 16 19 0 7 - 42

Fergus Falls 7 0 0 6 - 13

First Quarter

Bem-Woods, 79-pass from Hendricks. PAT-Hendricks kick. 0:48

Bem-Hendricks, 27-FG. 6:32

FF-Zenner, 54-run. PAT-Gaustad kick. 6:59

Bem-Woods, 12-pass from Hendricks. PAT-kick fail. 10:16

Second Quarter

Bem-Woods, 56-pass from Hendricks. PAT-pass fail. 3:04

Bem-Rutledge, 70-punt return. PAT-kick fail. 9:29

Bem-Declusin, 30-pass from Hendricks. Pat-Hendricks kick. 11:00

Third Quarter

No scoring

Fourth Quarter

Bem-Brown, 14-run. PAT-Hendricks kick. 0:10

FF-Abbot, 5-pass from Rund. PAT-pass fail. 9:32

Pat Miller

Pat Miller is the sports editor at the Pioneer.

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