After such an emotional victory over Hayden a week ago, Manhattan High football coach Joe Schartz was worried his team wouldn’t be focused against a struggling Highland Park team.
It did not take long for his concerns to disappear.
Manhattan established dominance over the Scots early and cruised to a 54-0 victory Friday night at Bishop Stadium to move to 4-0 on the season.
“The kids were motivated,” Schartz said. “I think we came out of the locker room in the first half and executed pretty well.”
MHS scored easily on every possession of the first half, led by running back Chris Martin, who scored three touchdowns. But it was the Indian defense that earned their coach’s praise after the game.
“The standout performance to me was from the defense,” Schartz said. “They really shut them down. We were aggressive and got to the ball.”
Highland Park had just 10 total yards in the first half and finished the game with 100. The Scots’ first first down of the game came with two minutes left in the third quarter.
MHS QB Erik Prockish had another solid game, completing five of seven passes for 91 yards and a touchdown. On the Indians’ second offensive play of the game, he connected with Martin for a 56-yard touchdown.
MHS scored three more times in the first quarter and most of its starters were out of the game shortly after halftime.
Blake Wewer led the Indians with 99 yards rushing and Prockish added 56 yards on the ground. Martin did not play after halftime.
“Chris means a lot to our team and it was good to get him out,” Schartz said. “Hopefully we can keep him fresh for the final four games of the season.”
Schartz said the younger players who entered the game late got valuable time on the field at the Varsity level, but wishes they had been sharper.
“I just wish they would have performed a little better,” Schartz said. “It was very sloppy. Everyone needs to be ready to play every night.”
MHS stumbled through much of the fourth quarter, but there was not a lot to be upset about with the game well in hand.
The Indians are on the road next week against Topeka West.