Eisenhower Will Try to Tackle New Foe in Week 3

Keegan Eckstrom TD run
Eisenhower's Keegan Eckstrom finds some space on his way to an 18-yard touchdown run during the second quarter of a game at Union City on Friday, Sept. 3, 2021. Eckstrom scored three TDs (two rushing and a kickoff return) and the Knights topped the Bears, 48-26. Photo courtesy Steve Younger.

RUSSELL, Pa. – Eisenhower has opened the season 2-0 thanks to wins against familiar rivals. To get to 3-0, the Knights will have to take down a brand new opponent.

The Eisenhower Knights will welcome the Franklin Knights to the “Pasture of Pain” Friday for what is believed to be the first meeting between the two teams on the gridiron. Kickoff is scheduled for 7 p.m. and the game will be broadcast on D9and10Sports.com.

While Eisenhower enters the contest at 2-0, Franklin comes in at 0-2.

Eisenhower’s potent rushing attack has powered the Knights’ offense through the first two games. Juniors Keegan Eckstrom and Benji Bauer lead the way with a combined 436 yards and six touchdowns. As a team, the Knights have run for 599 yards in two games.

The passing game has been efficient, if not explosive. Garrett Jensen has only attempted 14 passes in Eisenhower’s first two outings, but he’s completed 10 of them (71.4 percent). Jensen has 160 passing yards with no touchdowns or interceptions.

Wyatt Lookenhouse caught three passes for 96 yards in Eisenhower’s 48-26 win over Union City last week and leads the team in receiving yards. Bauer caught four passes for 43 yards in the season-opening win against Saegertown.

A couple of late scores in the fourth quarter a week ago bumped the points per game average up to 13, but the Eisenhower defense has been stout thus far.

Mike Beaver (18), Gannon Jaquay (15) and Tucker Lindell (15) lead the team in tackles, with Beaver adding an additional 5 TFL. Eisenhower has racked up six sacks through two games.

On the other side, Franklin has struggled to move the ball offensively. These Knights have scored just 14 points in two games and are averaging 200 yards of total offense (130 rushing and 70 passing) per game.

Quarterback Cole Buckley is 10-28 passing for 141 yards, one TD and three interceptions. His favorite target has been Hunter Marstellar who has three receptions for 63 yards.

Carson Wible leads the team in rushing with 21 carries for 101 yards. Tobias Sanchez has 16 carries for 72 yards and a score and Buckley has 18 carries for 42 yards.

Defensively, Franklin has been susceptible to the run, giving up more than 450 yards per game (452). The Knights gave up 540 yards and six touchdowns on the ground to Harbor Creek in Week 1, and another 364 yards and four scores to Fairview in Week 2.