When “The Fog” covered Attica’s Bruce Field early Friday night, Fountain Central’s ninth-ranked Class 2A football team had the only real advantage it needed in this Wabash River Conference clash of unbeatens.
“The Fog” is the name senior running back/linebacker Michael Duane is affectionately called by his teammates and the Mustangs’ coaching staff, essentially because opponents appear to have a difficult time finding and seeing Duane, who rushed 28 times for 273 yards and four touchdowns in Fountain Central’s surprisingly easy 42-8 victory.
The Mustangs extended their WRC winning streak to 25 and are 41-4 in their 45 most recent starts. Fountain Central drove 65, 58 and 39 yards for touchdowns during the game’s first 10 minutes and never backed off, outgaining the Red Ramblers 469-61.
Duane, who has 851 rushing yards through five games, averaged 9.8 yards a carry against Attica. Overall, Fountain Central averaged 6.7 yards per carry, even after taking a knee for one-yard losses on the game’s final two plays.
“The start was very important,” Duane said. “We wanted to jump on them early and get them down. Once we got going, we never wanted to stop. The offensive line was amazing. There were holes for everyone to run through all day, and the backs blocked for each other, too.
“I had a decent game, but the offensive line gets all the credit. Tonight boosts everyone’s confidence. We’ve got to continue to work hard, because with have lots of other teams to play.”
Duane had seven carries of 12 yards or more, including runs of 15 and 33 yards on the game’s opening drive.
Junior running back Jack Bolin, who rushed for 61 yards and a TD, said the game’s first three drives were huge.
“Both teams came in 4-0, so our game plan was to put it to them in the beginning,” Bolin said. “We wanted to finish them off early. We got up early and kept it on them. At halftime, we talked about being sure that we didn’t come out flat. We couldn’t take a play off. At 21-0, the game is not over.”
For coach Brian Moore, scoring in the game’s first 1:21 was exactly what the Mustangs needed on the road against a county rival.
“For us to take the opening drive down and score, especially quickly, was important,” Moore said. “We got some huge chunks of yardage. That’s what we thought we could do, but we didn’t know. You never know until the game starts. We were real pleased with the first drive, which set the tone for the game.
“When we got the ball back, we were continually able to march right down the field. We got momentum going and held onto it. What we liked was that our kids, including Michael, flew around. With not having a lot of kids back, Michael is the elder statesman. He likes playing with these guys. He has been a great leader, and he believes in the younger guys. We’re real proud of the way we played.”
Attica coach Ryan Good acknowledged that the Mustangs were impressive from the opening minute.
“They came out and hit us in the mouth right from the start,” Good said. “We had a little trouble adjusting defensively and accounting for some of the stuff they were doing. When we got on offense, we couldn’t get into a rhythm. We couldn’t get much going.
“Duane definitely is a good back. I keep waiting for that kid to graduate. He definitely is a great player on both sides of the ball. He sees the field well.”