Moose Lake-Willow River followed up a surprise win over Hermantown with a 78-0 blowout at neighboring Barnum on Friday, Sept. 6.

While the score may seem like the result was never in doubt, there was a time in the early going where the Rebels struggled. The Rebels scored on their initial possession, but their next drive stalled and Bomber took over on downs deep in their own territory.

After Barnum’s second punt of the night, MLWR had three touchdowns called back — two on consecutive plays — because of holding penalties.

The Rebels were able to convert on a second-and-37 play to extend the drive and junior quarterback Mason Olson connected with Brady Watrin for his second touchdown pass of the night.

From there, the Rebels rolled, piling up nearly 600 yards of total offense and scored 28 second quarter points to close the door on Barnum.

Olson ended up going 11-for-14 for 252 yards and four touchdowns — all in the first half — including a 91-yard strike to junior Carter Johnson. Johnson led MLWR with 103 yards receiving and one touchdown.

“Mason has a great understanding of the offense, he throws a good ball and on the other side we have kids that can catch,” Rebel Coach Dave Louzek said. “That’s the other thing is you have to have kids that can catch. You might have a kid that can throw, but we have the athletes right now where it makes sense to open it up a little bit, spread things out and throw the ball down the field.”

 Moose Lake-Willow River's Blake Juhl (23) runs away from Barnum's Sean Nyblom during the Rebel's win Friday, Sept. 6. Dave Harwig/Pine Journal
Moose Lake-Willow River's Blake Juhl (23) runs away from Barnum's Sean Nyblom during the Rebel's win Friday, Sept. 6. Dave Harwig/Pine Journal

The Rebels also ran the ball effectively, amassing 340 yards on the ground. Blake Juhl led MLWR with 91 yards and two rushing touchdowns.

As impressive as the MLWR offense was, the defense was equally dominant. The Rebels allowed just two first downs in the game — one of which came as time expired in the first half — and just 67 yards rushing.

MLWR (2-0) will host International Falls at 7 p.m. Friday, Sept. 13.

Barnum (0-2) will travel to play East Central at 7 p.m. Friday.

Moose Lake-WR 14-28-22-14—78

Barnum 0-0-0-0—0

MLWR — Eli Werner 13 pass from Mason Olson (run failed)

MLWR — Brady Watrin 14 pass from Olson (Blake Juhl run)

MLWR — Carter Johnson 90 pass from Olson (pass failed)

MLWR — Logan Orvedahl 2 run (run failed)

MLWR — Landin Kurhajetz 30 pass from Olson (Juhl run)

MLWR — Juhl 3 run (Watrin pass from Olson)

MLWR — Juhl 63 run (pass failed)

MLWR — Logan Privette 7 run (Jordan Fjosne run)

MLWR — Jackson Thompson 68 run (Duane Broughton run)

MLWR — Zach Youngs 40 run (Youngs run)

MLWR — Brody Motz 30 blocked punt return (run failed)