No quarterback, no problem for the Burnsville football team.
The Blaze used the Wildcat formation with senior running backs Jackson Martens and Steph Olson running it in a 31-23 victory at Farmington Sept. 30 in East Metro District White Division action.
Martens ran for 119 yards and a touchdown, while also throwing a touchdown pass. Olson connected on two scoring strikes to senior Jake Shepley.
The offense was unconventional, but the Blaze was forced into the Wildcat when senior quarterback Andrew Hanson went down with an ankle injury in the first quarter. So Krebs took both Olson and Martens and had them in shotgun formation. The snap would go directly back to one of them.
Off the Wildcat, the Blaze basically ran three plays. Olson or Martens would take off running to one side or the other. Junior Tre Thomas would cut across the line of scrimmage and the ball would be pitched forward to him or Olson would roll out and look for Shepley down the field.
And Farmington had no idea how to defend it.
The Blaze led 14-9 at the break and was up 17-9 after three quarters when junior Jake Boatman connected on a 22-yard field goal.
In the fourth quarter, Olson and Shepley connected for a second time. Olson threw a high-arching pass near the goal line and Shepley simply out-leaped the defender for the touchdown to put the Blaze up 24-9.
The Tigers got a quick touchdown back, before Martens sealed the win with a tough 31-yard run. He took the shotgun snap, headed left, broke three tackles and darted down the sidelines to the end zone.
The Tigers scored a meaningless touchdown on the last play of the game to make the final margin eight points.
Burnsville's first touchdown came in the second quarter down 3-0. It was Olson to Shepley from 20 yards out. And again, it was Shepley just beating man coverage by out-jumping the defender for the ball.
Burnsville went up 14-3 when Thomas took the forward pitch from Martens running laterally across the line of scrimmage. Thomas turned the corner and went untouched to the end zone from 18 yards out.
Thomas had a similar play in the third quarter that went for 49 yards, which set up Boatman's field goal. Martens had 67 yards passing on two completions to Thomas, while Olson had 50 yards on two connections with Shepley. Olson also ran 32 yards.
Defensively, senior Jared Shearer led the Blaze with eight tackles. He had 1.5 sacks and an interception. Senior Isiaah Harston also picked off a pass, while senior DeShawn Wallace recovered a muffed Tigers' fair catch attempt that set up the Blaze's first touchdown.
Senior Andrew Manor finished with seven tackles for Burnsville, including 1.5 sacks. Martens and junior Lucas Moreno each had six tackles, while sophomore Kyle Atkinson had four. Atkinson and Moreno each had a sack.
Burnsville returns home in Week 6 (Oct. 7) take on Eagan (0-5) in White Division play at 7 p.m.
The Blaze's final two regular season games are at No. 4 Rosemount (5-0) Oct. 14 and home to Eastview (2-3) Oct. 19.
To see more photos of the Blaze's win at Farmington, click here:http://www.swnewsmedia.com/savage_pacer/football-burnsville-at-farmington/collection_40b1c604-a622-5041-879d-5fc15f5cdec5.html.
Class 6A State Poll
1. Totino Grace, 2. Lakeville North, 3. Eden Prairie, 4. Rosemount, 5. Cretin-Derham Hall, 6. Minnetonka, 7. Eastview, 8. Champlin Park, 9. Blaine and Burnsville
Blaze 2016 Schedule
Sept. 1: at Roseville, W, 20-14
Sept. 9: vs. Lakeville South, W, 14-7 (OT)
Sept. 16: at Lakeville North, L, 28-7
Sept. 23: vs. Apple Valley, W 31-21
Sept. 30: at Farmington, W, 31-23
Oct. 7: vs. Eagan, 7 p.m.
Oct. 14: at Rosemount, 7 p.m.
Oct. 19: vs. Eastview, 7. p.m.