GOSHEN — On Senior Night at Fairfield High School Friday night, the Falcons upperclassmen were ushered on the field by more than a half dozen emergency vehicles with sirens blaring.
Senior quarterback Cory Lantz took the message to heart, running for two touchdowns and passing for two more as the Falcons posted a 44-13 home win over the Fremont Eagles.
Lantz rushed for 105 yards and passed for 67, including scoring passes of 33 yards for junior Braedon Helms and 10 yards to senior Colton Fisher.
One thing that didn’t go as well for the Falcons were five lost fumbles.
“We didn’t take care of the ball as we should have. As an option team we need to value the ball more,” Fairfield coach Matt Thacker said. “We have a lot to work on but we also saw a lot of positives tonight.”
The Falcons (3-0) travel to West Noble on Sept. 18. Fairfield is off to a 3-0 start for the first time since the 2012 season when the team started the season with six-straight wins.
Fremont (2-2) is at Central Noble.
Both teams are members of the Northeast Corner Conference but this was not a league game as Fairfield is in the Big School Division and Fremont the Small School one.
Fairfield's first two drives of the game covered 11 plays and nine plays but both ended in lost fumbles.
“We had the ball almost the entire first quarter and had nothing to show for it,” Thacker said. “Still, in the end, we found a way to come out on top.”
After a scoreless first period, the Falcons opened a 16-6 lead by halftime. Senior Nathan Klinedinst returned an interception 22 yards for a score Lantz had the first of his TD runs.
Fairfield blew the game open in the third by outscoring the Eagles 21-0. Lantz had another scoring run and his pair of TD passes.
The Falcons kept the ball on the ground for the most part and wore down Fremont. Then, when the Eagles were looking for the run, Thacker went to the air attack.
Fisher was the recipient of one of the TD passes in the third.
“It was Senior Night so we decided to Colton as a wideout,” Thacker said. “He has not worked out with the receivers for about a month but the corner route was there. I decided to put the ball up in the air and see what happens.”
Senior Quinn Kitson added 91 rushing yards and classmate Carson Abramson 84.
“Carson is not a big stat guy, but with him, in the game, you have to respect the dive play,” Thacker said. “If you don’t he is going to run for three, four or five yards at a time and we are going to end up in the end zone. It might takes is 10 minutes to get there but that is okay.
“He also plays linebacker for us and, to me, he is our MVP.”
FAIRFIELD 44, FREMONT 13
FF — (9:08) Nathan Klinedinst 22 interception return (Cory Lantz run)
FR — (2:43) Kameron Colclasure 1 run (pass failed)
FF — (1:35) Lantz 5 run (Lantz run)
FF — (6:32) Lantz 14 run (run failed)
FF — Braedon Helms 33 pass from Lantz (Quinn Kitson run)
FF — Colton Fisher 10 pass from Lantz (Mike Stout kick)
FR — (8:50) Dylan Parsons 5 run (Colclasure run)
FF — (3:38) Carson Abramson 2 tun (Stout kick)