Carey High School senior running back Porter Larna

Carey High School senior running back Porter Larna (right) breaks a tackle during Friday’s 66-8 Panther home win over Castleford at Derrick Parke Memorial Field in Carey.

Poised for their upcoming Sawtooth Conference with Lighthouse Christian Academy, the Carey Panthers (2-0) tuned up by scoring nine touchdowns in Friday’s 66-8 home rout of the Castleford Wolves on the Carey gridiron.

Carey senior Carson Simpson scored three touchdowns from 45-yard, 16-yard and 7-yard distances and Carey built a 46-8 halftime cushion in the eight-man football game at Derrick Parke Memorial Field.

Junior Ashton Sparrow scored twice and freshman Connor Simpson added a pair of 35-yard touchdown gallops after the half. Junior Wyatt Degn led the defense with six solo tackles and five assists. Degn also tallied his first touchdown on a 13-yard run.

Carey coach Lane Kirkland, whose program earned its 26th consecutive grid victory, said, “We got off to a fast start and rolled from there. The best thing was being able to play a lot of different kids and getting some depth built.”

The Panthers piled up 324 rushing yards with Carson Simpson (97 yards) and senior Porter Larna (86) leading the way. Sparrow returned an interception 49 yards for Carey’s first TD of the season from the defensive side of the ball.

Carey, the two-time defending State 1A Division 2 champion, travels to Twin Falls on Friday, Sept. 13 for a 7 p.m. championship game rematch with highly-regarded Lighthouse. Carey defeated Lighthouse 26-20 in last November’s title match-up in Pocatello.

Lighthouse Christian (10-2 last year, 2-0 this year averaging 58.0 ppg) will stage its home opener Friday after romping twice on the road. The Lions have won seven straight home games since losing at home 42-0 to Carey in 2017—Carey’s last visit there.

Counting last year’s championship win, Carey has now won four straight meetings with Lighthouse Christian Academy by a 170-46 margin. The Lions last beat Carey on the Twin Falls gridiron four years ago, by a 36-20 score.

Kirkland said, “I believe our kids are up for the task and will play their best game of the year. Everyone has shown improvement and we expect a competitive game on Friday in Twin.”

The Carey junior varsity defeated Castleford 60-14 in Friday’s preliminary game.

 

Friday, Sept. 6

Carey 66, Castleford 8

DIETRICH 

0

8

0

0

8

 CAREY

32

14

 6

 14

66

 

1st half

Carey—Carson Simpson, 45-yard run (Porter Larna run); (8-0 C).

Carey—Carson Simpson, 16-yard run (Wyatt Degn, pass from Hunter Smith); (16-0 C).

Carey—Hunter Smith, 23-yard run (Ethan Hennefer, pass from Smith); (24-0 C).

Carey—Carson Simpson, 7-yard run (Porter Larna run); (32-0 C).

Carey—Wyatt Degn, 13-yard run (Hunter Smith run); (40-0 C).

Carey—Ashton Sparrow, 49-yard interception return (run failed); (46-0 C).

Castleford—Nathaniel Ramos, 1-yard run (Dacian Nunes run); 46-8 C).

 

2nd half

Carey—Ashton Sparrow, 8-yard pass from Hunter Smith (run failed); (52-8 C).

Carey—Connor Simpson, 35-yard run (Connor Simpson, pass from Chase Bennion); (60-8 C).

Carey—Connor Simpson, 35-yard run (run failed); (66-8 C).

KEY STATS.............................. CASTLEFORD.................................... CAREY

Offensive plays................................ 59........................................... 32

1st downs, total.............................. 11........................................... 16

Rushes, yards............................. 37, 189............................ 29, 324

Yards per carry................................ 5.1....................................... 11.2

Completions, passes................... 7, 10...................................... 1, 2

Completion percentage.............. 70%...................................... 50%

Passing yards................................... 71.............................................. 8

Yards per completion.................. 10.0........................................ 8.0

Intercepted by................................... 0............................................... 2

Sacks by, yards.............................. 1, 9..................................... 8, 64

Returns, yards............................... 8, 80.................................... 4, 31

Total yards gained......................... 196....................................... 354

Third down efficiency............... 1 for 13............................... 3 for 4

Fourth down efficiency.............. 3 for 8................................ 1 for 1

Penalties, yards............................ 3, 25....................................... 2, 6

Punts, yardage.............................. 2, 15....................................... 0, 0

Yards per punt................................ 7.5.......................................... 0.0

 

INDIVIDUAL LEADERS—Carey

Rushing—Carson Simpson 7-97, 3 TD; Porter Larna 7-86, 4 1sts, 2 conv.; Connor Simpson 3-76, 2 TD, Wyatt Degn 7-35, 3 1sts, 1 TD; Hunter Smith 2-23, 1 TD, 1 conv.

Passing—Hunter Smith 1-2, 8 yards, 1 1st, 1 TD, 3 conv.

Receiving—Ashton Sparrow 1-8, 1 1st, 1 TD.

Punt returns—Tate Squires 1-6.

Interceptions (2)—Ashton Sparrow 1 with 49-yard TD return; Sawyer Mecham 1.

Tackle leaders—Wyatt Degn 6 solo/5 assists; Connor Simpson 5/7; Carson Simpson 5/4; Tate Squires 3/5; Ashton Sparrow 3/3; Porter Larna 1/5; Hunter Smith 2/3; Ethan Hennefer 3/2; Wyatt Mecham 0/4; Schuyler Thompson 1/3.

 

INDIVIDUAL LEADERS—Castleford

Rushing—Nate Knudson 13-77, 3 1sts; Dacian Nunes 8-75, 3 1sts; Danny Nicklas 3-26, 1 1st; Gus Wiggins 6-22, 1 1st.

Passing—Nate Knudson 6-9, 65 yards, 2 interceptions.

Receiving—Nicholas Aguirre 2-28, 2 1sts; Gus Wiggins 2-20, 1 1st; Dacian Nunes 2-17.

Kickoff returns—Derrick Reese 5-59.

All-purpose yardage—Nate Knudson 142.

Fumble recoveries (1)—Derrick Reese 1.

Sacks (1)—Nathaniel Ramos 1-9.

Tackles leaders—Eric Taylor 2 solo/5 assists; Derrick Reese 3/2; Gus Wiggins 2/2; Danny Niklas 1/2; Dacian Nunes 0/3.

Email the writer: sports@mtexpress.com

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