A perfect start makes finishing easy

  • Article by: RON HAGGSTROM , Star Tribune
  • Updated: November 18, 2011 - 8:28 PM

Edgerton/Ellsworth quarterback Isaac Heard felt a sense of nervousness a week ago. He made Ada-Borup's defensive unit absorb that feeling Friday morning.

The junior completed his first 12 passes and finished 17-for-19 for 292 yards and two touchdowns as the No. 1-ranked Dutchmen looked like the state's best team in a 48-20 victory over Ada-Borup.

Edgerton/Ellsworth (13-0) will face the winner of No. 8 Wheaton-Herman-Norcross (11-1) -- tied in the final poll with Ada-Borup -- and No. 10 Kittson County Central (9-2) in the Prep Bowl.

"I couldn't believe what was going on out there," Heard said. "I must not have been thinking to be that perfect. It was a lot of fun."

In a 30-8 victory over Clinton-Graceville-Beardsley in the Section 3 finals, Heard took a shot to the ribs and had his head bounce hard off the artificial field on the same play.

"I was nervous last week [a 28-12 victory over Nicollet in the quarterfinals]," Heard said. "Once I took a hit to the ribs I was ready to play football again."

With pinpoint accuracy against the Cougars (11-2), Heard threw touchdown passes of 22 yards to Casey Schilling and 41 yards to Devin Hulstein in the first half when the Dutchmen built a 32-6 lead. Heard was 14-for-15 -- his one incompletion was a catchable ball -- for 235 yards at the intermission.

"Our offensive line was great, and gave me a lot of time," Heard said.

Once the Cougars started respecting Heard's arm, Edgerton/Ellsworth controlled the ball with its ground attack. Hulstein opened the scoring with a 2-yard run and started the third quarter with a 15-yard scamper, extending the Dutchmen's lead to 40-6.

Hulstein, a junior, rushed 14 times for 105 yards.

"I don't think Isaac has ever thrown the ball that well," Hulstein said. "Once they started keying on the pass, we ran all over them."

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