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The tradition continues

Wartburg’s homecoming against Loras serves as reunion for five Spartan families
Loras Duhawk fans Chris and Gene with Duhawk son Spencer Lawson, Teresa and Mark with Duhawk son Jarod Clevenger, Doug and Tonya with Duhawk son Dalton Vislisel, Wartburg Knight fans Heidi and Rick with Knight son Brandan Childs, and Stacey and Jeff with Knight son Chris McNutt, all from Solon, met at midfield on the Wartburg “W” following the Knights’ homecoming win over the Duhawks, 42-11.All boys saw action on the D3 gridiron in Waverly on Saturday, Oct. 14. (photos by Jeff Hess)

WAVERLY– Wartburg College’s homecoming was a bit of a reunion for five Spartan alum on Saturday, Oct. 14, at Zimmerman field, following the Knights’ win over the Loras Duhawks, 42-11. Wartburg senior Chris McNutt and sophomore Brandan Childs met former high school football teammates Loras sophomores Spencer Lawson and Dalton Vislisel along with freshman Jarod Clevenger and their families joined together at the Wartburg “W” at midfield following the game.
Under gray, threatening skies the two teams took to the turf battling under intermittent rain showers. The first quarter, the Wartburg Knights jumped out to a 14-3 lead, imiting the Duhawks to a field goal, and not without Jarod Clevenger rotating in and out on defense for the Duhawks, Chris McNutt created some defensive secondary havoc for the Knights, Spencer Lawson assisted on a early tackle, and Dalton Vislisel provided protection for Loras’ kicker.
Near the end of the second quarter the rain increased and the Knights continued to contain the Duhawks, limiting them to a field goal and scoring 21 points, heading to the locker room as the digital scoreboard radiated the 35-6 half time score.
In the third quarter, the Loras Duhawks kicked another field goal and disrupted the Knights enough to muster a safety. The momentum seemed to change until Chris McNutt jumped a Loras receiver’s route when he stumbled for an interception and a 11-yard return to set up the Knight’s final score of the game. Loras led at the end of three, 42-11. Brandan Childs saw play time on special teams downing a kick.
The fourth quarter saw Childs in the receiver position on offense before the end of the scoreless quarter.
Loras posted 365 yards of total offense, going 15-32 for 262 yards passing with two interceptions, and rushed 37 times for 103 yards. Clevenger recorded a solo tackle and assisted on five tackles, one of the assists was a sack for a three-yard loss. Lawson contributed on tackle assist on special teams and Vislisel provided kicker protection for the Duhawks on three plays.
Watburg collected 476 yards of total offense, going 16-25 passing for 303 yards with no interceptions and rushed 45 times amassing 173 yards. Childs had a pass thrown his way but was smothered by Loras’ pass protection and McNutt jumped a Loras receiver’s route to pick up 11 yards and set up the Knight’s final score of the game. McNutt also racked up four solo tackles and assisted on two on defense.
McNutt is a 2013 graduate from Solon High School and was a member of the 2012-2013 Spartan football team that went 8-3 (2-7) exiting in the post season in a 35-10 loss to Decorah. Childs, Clevenger, Lawson and Vislisel are 2016 graduates of Solon High School and were members of the 2015-2016 Spartan football team that went 6-5 (5-4) leaving the playoffs following a loss to West Delaware, 37-14.
Even with the gales and the intermittent showers, as the Solon families joined together on the field, following the announcer’s invitation to the stands after the coaches and players’ meeting, it was a familiar feeling of community; even though they wore different jerseys, cheered for different teams, and were 93 miles from home… Always Solonstrong.
Doug and Tonya Vislisel took to Facebook commenting, “Great time at the game today.”
“Yes, it was wet, rainy and a little chilly…but today was an awesome day!” Stacey McNutt, Chris McNutt’s mother, commented on Facebook. “Another awesome win with another interception tacked on.”
Jarod Clevenger’s step mother, Teresa Clevenger’s comment from Facebook surmised it best, “It was not stellar weather but was way fun to watch (five) Solon Alumni play!”