Roland-Story falls at Greene County in 2A playoff opener: Norsemen made great strides in 2021

Joe Randleman
Ames Tribune
Roland-Story's Kale Lande (left) and Luke Patton bring down Greene County running back Richard Daugherty during the Norsemen's 55-14 loss to the Rams in the opening round of the Class 2A playoffs Friday at Jefferson.

The Roland-Story football team saw its season come to a close with a 55-14 loss to No. 3 Greene County in the opening round of the Class 2A playoffs Friday at Jefferson.

The Norsemen put up a great fight early. They only trailed 27-14 at the half.

But Greene County wore down Roland-Story in the second half. The Rams scored three unanswered touchdowns in the third quarter to pull away.

"I was happy that we came out and executed initially on our opening drive," Roland-Story head coach Matt Finn said. "We kept battling, but it was tough sledding for us. Greene County did a nice job on both sides of the ball.

Greene County improved to 8-1 with the victory. After winning just one game over its previous two seasons combined Roland-Story finished its 2021 campaign at 3-6.

Here is what we learned from Roland-Story's playoff loss:

Ram running game too much

Roland-Story had no answer for Greene County's potent rushing attack.

Greene County piled up 538 yards rushing on the Norsemen. Nathan Black exploded for 237 yards and four touchdowns for the Rams.

Quarterback Bryce Stalder added 134 yards and one touchdown in 13 carries. Patrick Daugherty ran for 88 yards and two scores.

Wilkinson, Johnson step up

Greene County did a great job slowing down Roland-Story's record-setting pass-catch combo of quarterback Quin Ante and receiver Will Bunn.

Ante threw for 198 yards and two touchdowns, but he only completed 6 of 19 passes. Bunn had just one catch for 11 yards.

With the focus on Bunn, Jonovan Wilkinson had a big night for Roland-Story. The Norse running back caught three passes for 127 yards, including an 80-yard touchdown reception.

Roland-Story running back Jonovan Wilkinson runs behind teammate Logan Schnurr (57) as he heads upfield during the Class 2A playoff first-round game between the Norsemen and Greene County Friday at Jefferson.

Hesston Johnson anchored things on the defensive side of the ball for Roland-Story. Johnson was active all night, finishing with an impressive 16 tackles.

Program moving in the right direction

Finn has things looking upward for Roland-Story.

The Norsemen tripled their win total over the previous two years combined. The exciting passing attack has the Roland-Story communities excited for where things are headed in the future.

"We increased our offense output by 100 yards per game," Finn said. "After nine weeks Quin Ante was top five in all classes for passing yards and Will Bunn was in top four for receiving yards in all classes. I am very proud of the steps our team and this program have taken this year, and we can take the successes of this season and build off them. We're in a really good spot to take another step next year, but I am just really grateful for the effort of this senior group. They are a great group of guys."

Greene County 55, Roland-Story 14

Roland-Story         6          8          0        0 — 14

Greene County     14         13        21        7 — 55

Individual statistical leaders

Rushing: Greene County — Nathan Black 16-237. Roland-Story — Nick Butler 7-15.

Passing: Greene County — Bryce Stalder 5-9-0-54. Roland-Story — Quin Ante 6-19-1-198.

Receiving: Greene County — Richard Daugherty 2-23. Roland-Story — Jonovan Wilkinson 3-127.

Tackles: Greene County — Patrick Daugherty 5.5. Roland-Story — Hesston Johnson 16.

Sacks: Greene County — Bradyn Smith 1.5.

Fumble recoveries: Greene County — Smith 1.

Interceptions: Greene County — Max Riley 1.