The Ashwaubenon football team got to play its first game on the new synthetic turf Thursday at Goelz Field.
The Jaguars definitely looked like they owned it.
Ashwaubenon dismantled Green Bay Preble 40-7 in its season-opener, scoring all of its points after falling behind 7-0 at the end of the first quarter.
James Morgan completed 21-of-31 passes for 221 yards and three touchdowns, which all came on consecutive drives in the second quarter when he was 12-of-16 for 147 yards to help the Jaguars go into the half up 19-7.
“There are a lot of kinks to work out, but I am pretty happy with this,” Morgan said. “It is pretty exciting to start out in the fashion we did.”
After Ashwaubenon senior Mason Ross nearly returned an interception for a score on the last play of the first half, the Jaguars continued to keep their foot on the gas at the start of the second half when senior running back Jake Zills made a 58-yard scoring scamper down the right sideline two plays into it.
The Ashwaubenon defense then pinned its ears back for the remainder of the game, picking off Preble quarterback Will Daniels a second time and recording five sacks.
The special teams also blocked its second punt of the game, setting up the first of sophomore Jaret Curtis’ two TD runs.
“Once we got up on them, we were going to take them out of the style of play that they like to do,” Ashwaubenon coach Mark Jonas said. “I don’t think the focus of their offense is to want to throw the ball. We felt by widening our ends a little bit, we could get a little bit of pressure on (Daniels).”
Daniels led the Hornets with 22 rushes for 45 yards and completed 10 of 21 passes for 100 yards with the two interceptions and a TD pass to sophomore Nathan Prevost to cap a 14-play, 57-yard drive in the first quarter, which saw the Hornets control the ball for over 8 minutes.
The possession was set up by a bad snap on a 42-yard field goal attempt by Ashwaubenon.
It was one of the few mistakes the Jaguars made on a night where they tallied 372 yards of offense with Morgan completing passes to six different receivers in the first half, including Jake Monroe, who finished with 11 catches for 88 yards.
Meanwhile, all but 40 of Preble’s yards came from Daniels.
“We changed up a little bit of our responsibilities and that made a big difference,” Jonas said. “We expected Daniels to run the ball a lot, but not that much. Once we made our adjustment, we were in really good shape. They couldn’t run the ball then.”
Ashwaubenon 40, GB Preble 7
GBP- Nathan Prevost 7 yard pass from Will Daniels (Corey Cegelski kick)
ASH- Jake Monroe 7 yard pass from James Morgan (kick blocked) ASH- Nathan Jarvis 7 yard pass from James Morgan (pass failed) ASH- Jake Imig 29 yard pass from James Morgan (Emmit Carpenter kick)
ASH- Jake Zills 58 yard run (Carpenter kick) ASH- Jaret Curtis 12 yard run (Carpenter kick)
ASH- Jaret Curtis 10 yard run (Carpenter kick)
Rushing — Ashwaubenon, Jake Zills 14-140; Preble, Will Daniels 22-45.
Passing — Ashwaubenon, James Morgan 21-31-0-221; Preble Daniels 10-21-1-100.
Receiving — Ashwaubenon, Jake Monroe 11-88, Jake Imig 3-45; Preble Nathan Riemer 3-27.