The Panthers finally managed got on the scoreboard with a couple of minutes left in the fourth, as Nyazum Gwamma booted in a 25-yard field goal. In the final minute, however, the Bulldog offense, consisting almost entirely of substitutes, had one more burst of energy left in it. With about 16 seconds remaining, Jalen Strunk capped off the night for Ottumwa by rushing for a 25-yards touchdown that extended Ottumwa’s lead to 46-3.
Ottumwa’s perfect season came to an abrupt end when the Iowa High School Athletic Association decided the Bulldogs would have forfeit their season-opening victory over Keokuk because an academically ineligible player competed in the game for Ottumwa. When the Ottumwa coaching staff learned that an academically ineligible had played in the game they self-reported the oversight to the IHSAA. Pfantz, however, said the unfortunate reversal of fortune doesn’t take away from what Ottumwa accomplished on the field that night.
“It just means it doesn’t count officially,” the Ottumwa coach said.
Ottumwa Athletic Director Tom Kopatich said he thought the ineligible player will be suspended 30 days starting the day after the Keokuk game. So, if Kopatich is correct, the player would be eligible to play again Sept. 29.
In other Class 4A, Division 3 action, Dowling picked up a big 37-26 win over West Des Moines Valley and Ankeny Centennial improved to 2-0 with a 51-39 win over Johnston. In addition, Marshalltown’s struggles continued with a lopsided 62-6 loss at Waukee. With the loss, the Bobcats dropped to 0-2. Plus, Des Moines Hoover was thumped by Urbandale 49-10 and Mason City fell to Waverly-Shell Rock 21-9.
Ottumwa (1-1) plays at 7 p.m. Friday at Des Moines East.
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Ottumwa 46, Mt. Pleasant 3
Ottu 13 13 7 13 — 46
Moun 0 0 0 3 — 3
Scoring By Quarters
OTT — 14-yard run by Isaiah Cox (Justin Vonderhaar kick), 9:10.