GRAND FORKS – West Fargo knew that Grand Forks Central would have to find a way to move the ball on offense with usual Knight starting quarterback Kaleb Binstock sidelined with an injury.

But what the Packers didn’t expect was to hold the Knights to minus-40 yards and no first downs in the first half on the way to winning 57-0 on Friday night at Cushman Field.

“You don’t expect anything,” West Fargo coach Jay Gibson said. “But I knew that without their main quarterback they were going to have issues. … We played another good game and I just think it was tough for Central. As far as I’m concerned it was a wonderful effort by our guys.”

After the teams exchanged fumbles early in the first quarter, Creighton Pfau hit Josh Pistorius on an 18-yard touchdown pass for the Packers’ first score. Another Central fumble gave the Packers the ball back at the Knight’s 20. Two Isaiah Helland-Davis runs later West Fargo led 14-0.

A Jacob Hoy 1-yard run made it 20-0, followed by an Anthony Nichols 39-yard punt return for a touchdown to make it 27-0 after the first quarter.

The inexperience at quarterback and the defensive front of the Packers caused problems for Binstock’s replacement, Cody Aarvig.

“That’s tough for Cody Aarvig to come in,” Central coach Bill Lorenz said. “I thought he did an OK job, but just the timing was off a little bit, you could tell that.”

The Knights never found the answer offensively, finishing with minus-39 yards for the game to West Fargo’s 302.

“We have a really nice defense,” Gibson said. “We feel it’s going to keep us in games. We take a lot of pride in that. And we had some big plays for the first time tonight, too.”

The Packers, whose only two-way starter is senior guard/defensive tackle Zach Mohs, controlled the line of scrimmage throughout the game.

“They were a lot more physical than we were,” Central coach Bill Lorenz said. “We knew we were going to have trouble matching up with them (physically) going into the game. I tell you what, that’s a good football team we played tonight.”

The Packers, who have now surrendered just 62 points through their first six games, held a 43-0 lead at halftime – the second quarter saw a 6-yard score by Helland-Davis, a Raphael Ndimubandi 1-yard run and an 18-yard Amer Becktas field goal.

West Fargo improved to 4-2 (4-0 in the Eastern Dakota Conference), while Central dropped to 1-5 (0-4 in the EDC).

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