With dynamic junior Charlie Coenen leading the Chanhassen backfield, Storm coach Cullen Nelson said he expected rival Chaska to focus on stopping the Storm's rushing attack in their game Friday at Chanhassen High School.
The Storm's quarterback, senior Riley Funk, made the most of the opportunity, throwing three touchdowns in a 25-20 victory.
Funk completed his first seven passing attempts and threw two of his three touchdown passes to sophomore Josh Och. Coenen, filling in at running back because of injuries, added a rushing score as Chanhassen (3-0) built a 25-7 lead in the third quarter and survived a fourth-quarter comeback by Chaska (2-2).
"We expect Riley to make those plays, if the line gives him time, and they did tonight," Nelson said. "He lived up to our expectations tonight."
Chanhassen jumped out to a 12-0 first quarter lead on touchdown passes from Funk to Josh Kirchoff and Ochs. The Hawks countered with a 15-yard touchdown pass from quarterback Matthew Paul to Ethan Bachmann before the Storm's third touchdown, a 5-yard rush by Coenen late in the second quarter. The score capped a 13-play drive that took over eight minutes and gave the Storm an 18-7 halftime lead.
Funk threw a 34-yard touchdown pass to Och in the third quarter to extend the Storm lead to 25-7.
Chaska cut the lead to 11 when Paul and wide receiver Nic Snuggerud connected for a 77-yard touchdown pass late in the third quarter.
The Hawks cut the lead to 25-20 with a 5-yard rushing touchdown by Jack Boyle with 7:21 to go in the fourth quarter. Chaska drove 40 yards to the Chanhassen 38-yard line on its final drive, but a Hail Mary pass fell incomplete in the end zone as time expired.
"It's all we can ask for is a chance to win a ballgame," Chaska coach Bryan Dahl said. "We had that tonight. We just didn't finish."
The game between the schools, which are less than three miles apart, was originally scheduled to be played Oct. 16 but a COVID-19 quarantine affecting Chanhassen forced it to be postponed.
The victory was Chanhassen's first over the Hawks since 2016.