No. 1 Dowling one step closer to third straight 4A title

No. 1 Dowling one step closer to third straight 4A title

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No. 1 Dowling one step closer to third straight 4A title

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Dowling Catholic’s Jacob Zachary (23) runs the ball against Council Bluffs Lewis Central on Friday at Williams Stadium in Des Moines. The top-ranked Maroons advance to the Class 4A semifinals and will aim to win its third straight state championship.

Dowling Catholic’s Jacob Zachary (23) runs the ball against Council Bluffs Lewis Central on Friday at Williams Stadium in Des Moines. The top-ranked Maroons advance to the Class 4A semifinals and will aim to win its third straight state championship.

Dowling students slowly unfurled a 30-foot long banner as the final seconds ticked off the clock Friday.

It read “Dome Sweet Dome.”

The No. 1-ranked Maroons beat Council Bluffs Lewis Central 43-0 Friday in a Class 4A football playoff quarterfinal at Williams Stadium.

After winning back-to-back 4A championships, the Maroons are eager to reach the semifinals in the UNI-Dome in Cedar Falls. And while the team won’t look past its next game, there’s potential for becoming the first school to win three straight 4A titles.

“It’s a chance to make history,” said linebacker Jacob Hummel, who returned an interception 36 yards for a touchdown Friday.

Dowling will play rival West Des Moines Valley in a semifinal Nov. 13 at 7:06 p.m.

Jacob Zachary rushed for touchdowns of 11 and 35 yards and the Maroon defense shut out a Lewis Central team that had knocked off Urbandale and Ankeny in successive playoff games.

Three of Dowling’s first four drives of the game ended without a point. Lewis Central stopped Dowling on a fourth-down play, intercepted a pass and the Maroons missed a field goal.

The team’s defense made big plays, though. Dowling blocked two punts and recovered a fumble early in the game.

“They kept stepping up and they kept stepping up,” Zachary said. “Our defense kept us in it.”

Dowling’s Kurt Walding hit Cole Scieszinski with a 27-yard touchdown pass with 5:46 left in the first quarter for the first score.

Then the Maroons added four second-quarter touchdowns.

Zachary and J.T. Brown both ran for 11-yard scores. Walding added a 1-yard touchdown run.

Brown’s score gave Dowling a 29-0 lead with three minutes left until halftime. Hummel raced in for a pick-six a minute later.

“It’s all about the team,” Hummel said.

Dowling graduated nearly all of its starters from last season’s title team.

“It took us a while to mesh together and blend together,” Dowling coach Tom Wilson said.

After going 11-0 so far, Dowling made the most of its opportunities.

Lewis Central

Dowling

First downs

8

17

Rushes-Yards

18-42

38-210

Passing

101

98

Comp-Att-Int

15-31-1

6-10-1

Return Yards

0

38

Fumbles-Lost

2-2

2-1

Penalties-Yards

5-32

3-25

Lewis Central

0

0

0

0

0

Dowling

7

29

7

0

43

D—Scieszinski 27 pass from Walding (Hemann kick)

D—J.Zachary 11 run (Hummel run)

D—Walding 1 run (Hemann kick)

D—Brown 11 run (Hemann kick)

D—Hummel 36 interception return (Hemann kick)

D—J.Zachary 35 run (Hemann kick)

Individual leaders

Rushing —Lewis Central: Duggan 9-29; Dowling: J.Zachary 8-82, Krah 5-41.

Passing —Lewis Central: Duggan 15-31-1-101; Dowling: Walding 6-9-0-98, Brown 0-1-1-0.

Receiving —Lewis Central: Sieleman 2-21, Simmons 4-19; Dowling: Scieszinski 4-67, Bagenstos 1-27.

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