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WAUBUN FOOTBALL Lerud paces Bombers to blowout victory

Sam Lerud did a little bit of everything Thursday night. And that all added up to too much for East Grand Forks Sacred Heart to handle.

Lerud rushed for two touchdowns, passed for another and had a late interception to ice Waubun's season-opening 32-24 high school football win against Sacred Heart at the Senior High Field.

"He (Lerud) is just a good football player,'' Eagles coach Drew Mortenson said. "We've seen him on film. Our goal was to take him out of the mix. But he made plays.''

Those plays included a 21-yard scoring run by the running back that gave Waubun a permanent lead at 16-8 with 3:37 left in the second quarter. That was followed by a 30-yard scoring pass to Devin Heisler with 1:09 left in the first half for a 24-8 lead.

Lerud added a 7-yard scoring run with 3:13 left for a 32-16 advantage. Then he intercepted an Eagles pass with 1:15 remaining.

"Sam was all over the place,'' Waubun coach Paul Clark said. "He does a little bit of everything for us. It's a great situation.''

The biggest play? "Probably the touchdown pass,'' Clark said. "That seemed to give us a boost and give us some confidence.''

Lerud rushed for 87 yards to lead a ground-oriented Waubun offense that rushed for 272 yards while attempting only eight passes. "We know our running game has to carry us,'' Clark said. "We're a smash-mouth team. We are green on the line. But they rose to the occasion. I was very proud of them.''

Sacred Heart, meanwhile, was more reliant on the right arm of quarterback Michael Pietruszewski.

The junior quarterback was 7-of-16 passing for 158 yards. He threw touchdown passes of 35 yards to Daniel Ewens, 60 yards to John Melin and 19 yards to Ewens.

"They were giving us passing opportunities, and Michael is a great quarterback,'' Mortenson said. "He did a good job today. He got dinged up a little, which hurt our running game.''

Ewens' second touchdown catch came with 1:21 left, pulling the Eagles within 32-24.

Sacred Heart had a final opportunity when Melin recovered the onside kick on the ensuing kickoff. But, two plays later, Lerud made the interception deep in Bombers territory.

"The interception at the end, he's been picking off passes all through camp so a play like that was sort of expected,'' Clark said.