Green Machine hands Moline second loss

Amy Boldt
Jason Johnson barrels his way down field looking to score a touchdown for the Green?Machine Sept. 5.

It was the exact opposite outcome of last year’s showdown between the Geneseo Green?Machine and the Moline Maroons and this time it was in Geneseo’s favor as the Green?Machine won 21-3 on Sept. 5.

The Green Machine’s win capped off a night of celebration as Geneseo High?School’s football field was officially named Bob Reade Field prior to the contest.

After an opening drive that took a little over eight minutes, Moline put the first points of the game on the board with a 42-yard field goal by Anthony Diaz for the 3-0 lead at the end of the first quarter.

“I felt like we were asleep on the first couple of series and I didn’t think we were sharp in the first half,” said head coach Larry Johnsen. “But we responded and stepped on the gas.”

Geneseo scored the go ahead touchdown on a 38-yard reception by Logan Patton from Michael Atwell. Patton made the catch after the ball was thrown a little short and he had to come back to make the reception, while fending off two Maroon defenders mid-air. Patton made the catch and ran the ball into the end zone for the TD. Jason Johnson knocked through the PAT. Geneseo took the 7-3 advantage into the half.

“It was a great catch by Logan,” said Johnsen. “Michael had the confidence to make the throw and Logan was there.”

After the half, Jake Ballegeer punched through another touchdown for the Green Machine from 2-yards out and Johnson added the PAT for a 14-3 lead.

Ballegeer also had a big play on the defensive side of the ball. On 4th down and 1 at midfield, the Maroons handed the ball off to 5-11 and 275-pound fullback Josh Anders, but he didn’t make it far as Ballegeer blitzed and took him down for a loss and turned the ball over to Geneseo.

“Moline had us on our heels, but we rose to the occasion when we needed to,” said Johnsen. “Jake Ballegeer is a hard-nosed football player and rose to the occasion to make the stop (on Anders) and there is about a 100-pound difference.”

The Green Machine capped off the game with a fourth quarter touchdown by Jason Johnson on a 5-yard run. Johnson also added the PAT to seal the victory for Geneseo.

The Geneseo offense combined for 146 rushing yards on 44 carries and also totaled 70 passing yards on five completions.

Johnson led the ground game for Geneseo with 49 yards on 11 carries, followed by Patton with 43 yards on 12 carries. Ballegeer added 28 yards on seven carries, while teammate Collin Akers ran the ball for 18 yards on six carries. Atwell finished the game with five carries for one yard and Josh Ward had one carry for one yard.

Geneseo also found success through the air with Atwell completing five passes on seven attempts for 70 yards and one touchdown. Atwell hit three different receivers Friday night — Adam Haviland, three catches for 32 yards; Patton, on catch for 38 yards and Hunter Fiers, one catch for 6 yards. Atwell also threw one interception that bounced off a Geneseo player and landed in the hands of the Maroons’ Derek Dye.

Defensively, Geneseo held Moline to 102 rushing yards on 30 carries and 31 passing yards.

John?Deppe and Michael Possin both broke through the line on separate occasions to sack the Moline quarterback. Deppe had one sack for  a loss of 12 yards and Possin, one sack for a loss of three.

Five Green Machine players also posted tackles for a loss — Deppe, two tackles for a loss of 13 yards; Matt Boyd, two tackles for a loss of 3; Possin, one tackle for loss of 3; Ballegeer, one tackle for loss of 1 and Joe Snyder, one tackle for a loss of 1.

The Green?Machine (2-0 overall) will travel to Quincy tonight for a 7:30 p.m. contest with Quincy Notre Dame.

Aaron Kotecki drags down the Moline ball carrier during Geneseo’s home contest with Moline on?Sept. 5.