FAIRFIELD — Line it up. Run straight ahead. Move the chains. Repeat.

And repeat, repeat, repeat.

Medomak Valley put years of frustration in the past in a single night, opening the Class C football season with a dominating 38-0 win over defending state champion Nokomis on Friday at Keyes Field on the Lawrence High School campus. Senior back Drew Severson ran for 150 yards and a touchdown, while sophomore Levi Ward added another 81 yards and a pair of scores for the Panthers (1-0).

The loss avenged a first-round playoff exit at the hands of Nokomis last fall.

“Over the last few weeks of the preseason, we united as a team,” Severson said. “It brought us all together and we came out here and dominated as one. It feels incredible to beat them in the season opener. It’s an amazing feeling.”

Together, Severson and Ward accounted for more than two-thirds of Medomak’s 326 yards of total offense — more than double what Nokomis (0-1) managed as an entire team for the night (162).

“He had a heck of a game,” Medomak coach Ryan Snell said of Severson, whose short run gave the Panthers a 16-0 lead late in the second quarter. “Our line was unbelievable tonight, and I think Drew would be the first one to tell you that, too. They did a great job opening up holes, and we went smashmouth once we realized we could and drove behind Drew and the other backs.

“Great night by him. He’s worked hard in the weight room all four years and he definitely deserves it.”

Leading by two scores at halftime, Medomak turned in its longest drive of the night to begin the third quarter. The 69-yard march through the heart of the Nokomis defense, which chewed up more than six minutes on the game clock, was capped by Ward’s 11-yard fourth-down run to make it 24-0.

“We told the kids at halftime to get ready. We knew that first drive was important, and we weren’t going to change anything,” Snell said. “Even if they made adjustments, if it wasn’t stopping us we were going to continue straightforward. We knew if we were able to score some points on that drive it would put us in good shape.”

So far, life without a home hasn’t been kind to the “Road” Warriors, whose revamped roster on both sides of the ball made for a difficult opening night. In fact, it was almost exactly what head coach Jake Rogers dreaded with such a young team wearing a giant bullseye on its collective back.

“It was exactly what I had feared, that they were going to just run right at us,” Rogers said. “Right down our throats. Running teams, that’s what I fear. Passing teams, I worry about the 50-50 ball.

“I was hoping for a little bit better defensively.”

About the only thing to slow the Panthers was Nokomis linebacker Ryan McAtee. McAtee thwarted a pair of short-yardage runs on Medomak’s first possession — the second of which came on a fourth-and-goal try from the Nokomis 3-yard line.

Medomak, though, then scored on its next four consecutive possessions to blow the game wide open. The Panthers showed no signs of a team which had struggled the previous two seasons to find a rhythm.

“I have the utmost faith in my team. I believe in them, and I knew we were going to bounce back,” Severson said. “The morale had been down (the last two years), but as a senior it’s my mission to bring this team together.”

The fourth quarter began with a 48-yard Colvin Standring gallop down the right sideline — in which he broke through several tackle attempts — to extend the Medomak lead to 32-0 and put it out of reach for good.

The Panthers’ offensive line, which boasts four seniors and one junior, was so good that quarterback Zeke Hesseltine didn’t need attempt a single pass on the night.

“That’s what we do,” Severson said. “That’s what we’re trained to do. I was always trained three yards, three yards, three yards. Just keep going.”

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