As he walked off the field, Lincoln East quarterback Noah Walters made sure the game ball made it safely to the Spartans' locker room.
After the performance he put up, it’s a souvenir worth keeping.
By the time halftime rolled around, Walters had already tossed four touchdown passes and totaled nearly 300 yards in the air, and he added to those marks in the second half.
Walters’ six touchdown passes led No. 10 Lincoln East to an emphatic 56-20 win over Millard North on Friday night at Seacrest Field.
Lincoln East (3-1) roared out to a fast start in last week’s win over Norfolk, and the Spartans replicated that feat once again. It took less than two minutes for Walters to throw his first score, a 19-yard screen to Billie Stephenson, and he remained a big-play threat all game long.
Walters also tossed a 90-yard touchdown to Cooper Erikson and a 72-yard strike to Luke Greisen as part of his big first-half effort.
“I knew that our linemen could (keep) their blocks,” said Walters about the long touchdown strikes. “Our line did great, our wide receivers got open and did their jobs, so all I needed to do was throw them the ball.”
Millard North (0-4) relied on its rushing attack as always, with the triple-option offense posing a challenge to the Spartan defense. Nose guards Sam Cappos and GeGe Crayton did well to slow the Mustangs down, even if quarterback Ben Weindel ran for a pair of first-half touchdowns.
“They’ve been doing that for a long time, and I was really pleased with the way our kids responded,” Lincoln East coach John Gingery said. “They did a great job defensively slowing them down.”
After Millard North scored a touchdown to make it an eight-point game early in the third quarter, Lincoln East dominated the remainder of the contest. The Spartans scored 28 unanswered points and hardly allowed any Millard North drives into their territory during the second half.
Walters connected with Erikson for another long passing touchdown, a 55-yard strike, in the third quarter, and he finished his scoring with a 22-yard throw to AJ Seizys.
Walters is no stranger to big performances on Friday nights, but a plus for Lincoln East was that six other players scored touchdowns alongside their star quarterback.
“We have weapons that put stress on defenses,” said Gingery. “We’ve been playing some great teams, so we have to keep performing.”
Six-touchdown performances don’t come easily, and it’s part of an upward trend for Walters after throwing four touchdowns in a loss to Papillion-La Vista South two weeks ago and totaling five touchdowns against Norfolk last week.
Not that he needed to prove it, but the East senior is one of the best quarterbacks in the state. Through four games, he has 17 touchdowns to just one interception, an impressive ratio the Spartans hope continues next week.
It’ll be a short week of preparation ahead of a clash against No. 4 Lincoln Southeast, which suffered its first loss of the season to Creighton Prep on Thursday. That game may determine the best football team in the city, a title that the Spartans are confident they can achieve.
“A lot of our boys have a lot of heart, and I know top to bottom we’re good,” Walters said.
“Southeast is a great football team and we’re going to have to come back and hit it hard,” added Gingery. “We don’t have a lot of time to celebrate this one, and it’s going to be another tough game.”
Reach the writer at 402-473-7437 or at LMullin@journalstar.com. On Twitter @lmullin7
In this Series
- 6 updates