SHELTON — Luke Glenn helped the Shelton football team start strong in the second round of the Class D-2 state playoffs.
The Bulldogs’ senior running back had 27 carries for 232 with four touchdowns, most of which came in the first half, to help No. 6 Shelton score the game’s first 34 points. That helped the Bulldogs cruise to a 42-17 victory over Spalding/Spalding Academy on Wednesday.
The victory puts Shelton into the quarterfinals for the first time since 1985, where the Bulldogs will play Monday at No. 7 Bertrand. Bertrand rolled over Kenesaw, 82-45, on Wednesday.
Glenn said getting to the quarterfinals is a great feeling, especially after falling to Garden County 58-52 in three overtimes in the second round last year.
“All it does is just move us closer to our No. 1 goal, which is a state championship,” Glenn said. “It really hurt losing that game last year.”
Four plays into the game, Glenn scored on a 39-yard run that put the Bulldogs on the board.
After a 1-yard run by Shelton quarterback Clayton Stoppkotte, Glenn on the next three Shelton possessions to take the 34-0 with 4 minutes, 54 seconds left of the second quarter. His second touchdown came on one play on a 53-yard run after Shelton’s defense stopped Spalding/Spalding Academy on fourth down.
Bulldog coach Mike Lowe said the first half really set the tone and liked what he saw out of Glenn, who sat out most of the second half because of a cramp.
“Luke ran the ball well and wanted the ball,” Lowe said. “He cramped up a little bit in the second half. We kept him out in the second half just because we really didn’t need him. But overall, I thought we were very aggressive. We came out and ran the ball hard. We played aggressive on defense. That really set the tone for us for the first half.”
Spalding/Spalding Academy did move into Shelton territory three times late in the first half, but was turned away by turnovers. The Knights threw two interceptions and lost a fumble.
“We shot ourselves in the foot there,” SSA coach Troy Kleffner said. “We might have had a chance to get back into the football game if not for those mistakes in the first half.”
After having no luck in the first half, the Knights went to the air in the second half and found success, especially on the first possession. Spalding/Spalding Academy went 65 yards on its first possession. The big play came when quarterback Mike Glaser found Wyatt Pfeifer for a 34-yard gain, then Glaser scored on a 10-yard run to put the Knights on the board.
Glaser was 12-of-38 for 206 yards with a touchdown pass but was intercepted three times. Kleffner said they had to go to the air after only getting 54 yards of offense in the first half, 39 of which came on the ground.
“We’re a smash mouth football team so we had to spread them out to get back into the football game,” Kleffner said. “We moved the ball pretty well in the second half, but we had some penalties and some dropped passes.”
The Bulldogs had 389 yards of offense, 366 of which came on the ground.
Lowe said there’s a few things the Bulldogs need to clean up before taking on Bertrand next week. They were penalized seven times for 71 yards, had four fumbles and lost two. But for the most part, Lowe’s happy Shelton is still playing football.
“Spalding/Spalding Academy didn’t quit and I’m glad the whole game wasn’t like the second half or else we might have been on the wrong end of it,” Lowe said. “We just need to work our discipline a little bit and hold our blocks a little longer. But we are going to the quarterfinals and I don’t think we’ve been able to say that in a long, long time. It’s great. The kids are excited and the town is excited.”
Spalding/Spalding Academy (6-4).............................0 0 8 9—17
Shelton (9-1)...............................................................22 12 0 8—42
SHE—Glenn 39 run (run failed), 11:10.
SHE—Stoppkotte 1 run (Stoppkotte run), 4:57.
SHE—Glenn 53 run (Stoppkotte pass to Hawks), 0:35.
SHE—Glenn 9 run (pass failed), 8:10.
SHE—Glenn 4 run (pass failed), 6:16.
SSA—Glaser 10 run (Glaser pass to Slevin), 10:41.
SHE—Mueller 4 run (Stoppkotte run), 8:50.
SSA—Contreras 37 Field Goal, 8:05. 8:05.
SSA—Glaser 42 pass to McKay (run failed), 3:00.
1st Downs 11 19
Rushing yards 45 366
Yards Passing 206 23
Comp-Att-Int 12-40-3 3-6-1
Fumbles-Lost 2-2 4-2
Punts-Avg 3-32.3 2-32.0
Penalties 7-54 7-71
Rushing — SSA, J. Glaser 8-30, M. Glaser 6-12, Hartley 3-9, McKay 1-1, Stevens 1-(-7). SHE, Glenn 27-323, Mueller 17-68, Stoppkotte 22-45, Muhlbach 3-15, Jimenez 2-6.
Passing — SSA, M. Glaser 12-38-3-206, Stevens 0-2-0-0. SHE, Stoppkotte 3-6-1-23
Receiving — SSA, Glenn 1-16, Hawks 1-10, Jimenez 1-(-3). SHE, J. Glaser 4-61, Pfeifer 3-49, Bloom 2-37, Hartley 2-17, McKay 1-42.