Knox Football Drops Conference Opener at Ripon

The Prairie Fire football team dropped their conference opener 33-6 at Ripon on Saturday night.


The Red Hawks struck first with 12:35 left in the first quarter with a 72-yard rushing touchdown. Knox's Todd Smith picked up a tackle to stop a two-point conversion in its tracks.


Ripon scored again late in the first quarter on a three-yard passing touchdown. The point after attempt was good.


Ripon reeled of three more scores in the first 11 minutes second quarter, a 22-yard passing touchdown and a pair of field goals to take a 26-0 lead.


Kaile Williams put Knox on the board with just over a minute to play in the first half on a one-yard rush set up by a 65-yard reception by Tyler Elfering. A two-point conversion was not successful.


The Red Hawks added another score, a three-yard rush, with 11 seconds left in the half to take a 33-6 lead.


A steady rain in the second half impacted the offense of both teams, although Knox did get deep into Ripon territory at the beginning of the fourth quarter.


Williams completed 4-of-17 passes for 88 yards. He rushed for a team-leading 46 yards and a score. Elfering's 65 yards led the receiving corps and Hunter Anderson rushed for 29 yards and caught a pass for 9 yards.


Trevor Geggie racked up 73 return yards on three attempts.


Lucas Cruz led the Prairie Fire defense with seven tackles, including two tackles for a loss. Cruz and Caleb Spinks each picked up a sack. Kendall Ballman and Cade Cosson also added five tackles apiece.


"Ripon has a good rushing offense and they showed it today," said head coach Aaron Willits. "Their defense kept us on our toes, but we did not execute as well as we could have. The second half was tough on both teams, but we let them get away with things in the first half."


Knox returns to action at Lake Forest on September 17.

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