Greenfield - Just two weeks into the season, the Greendale and Greenfield football programs are off to completely different starts.
The Panthers are rolling already, while the Hustlin' Hawks are struggling.
Both trends continued on Friday night, as Greendale routed Greenfield, 42-3, to improve to 2-0 and increase its scoring edge to 80-15. Greenfield slipped to 0-2 and has not posted a touchdown this season.
Sophomore QB leading
Greendale sophomore quarterback Josh Ringelberg is one of the main reasons for the Panthers' hot start, and he showed off a variety of talents on Friday night.
Ringelberg enjoyed a near-perfect day, finishing 12 of 15 for 239 yards and two touchdowns. He also created more havoc for the Hawks with seven carries for 26 yards and a pair of touchdowns.
For the season, Ringelberg is a staggering 27 of 33 for 408 yards and two touchdowns. He also has run for four more scores.
"He continues to show good poise," Greendale head coach Rob Stoltz said. "He is a coachable kid, and he knows the offense well. Also, our offensive line has done a good job with pass protection."
Ringelberg showed no signs of being an underclassman as he swung the game completely in Greendale's favor early in the second quarter when he launched a throw deep down the field to Cody Kmetz, who broke free for an 83-yard gain before getting tripped up. Two plays later, Ringelberg lofted a throw to the end zone for Mitchell Brees to push the lead to 14-0.
Later, Greendale quickly took charge of the game. On a critical fourth-and-inches midway through the second quarter, Ringelberg took the snap out of the shotgun on a designed run up the middle to keep the drive alive. On the next play, running back Jake Zywicki scored from one yard out to push the lead to 21-0.
On the first play from scrimmage for Greenfield on its next drive, quarterback Joey Hannah was intercepted when looking for Keagan Banks over the middle. Ringelberg scored two plays later on a quarterback sneak, pushing the lead to 27-0.
"Our offense is really important because of the timing involved," said Ringelberg. "It really starts with our preparation every week."
Greenfield head coach Scott Otto said his team was prepared as well but did not execute.
"When you turn the ball over six times, you don't have to do anything defensively," said Otto. "They didn't give us any defense that we didn't practice or haven't seen before. We moved the ball on them but then it would be a holding penalty or a fumble."
Another Hawks giveaway
Hannah gave hope to the Hawks before halftime as he scrambled for 42 yards but was stripped from behind, and the ball was recovered by a host of Panthers. On the very next play, Ringelberg found a streaking Nate Miller up the middle and connected for a 31-yard touchdown pass.
Greenfield finally got on the board when Hannah drilled a 30-yard field goal late in the fourth quarter.
The loss left Otto frustrated, especially about his team's nine turnovers in the first two games.
"Ultimately enough has to be enough," he said. "They have to make a commitment to themselves: I am not going to fumble the football. I am not going to throw an interception. I am going to get my block."
At the same time, Otto was impressed with the play of Greendale.
"I don't know how he does it," he said. "Stoltz is a miracle worker over there. He has only eight seniors on that team and from their last game, only seven started. To get those kids to play like that in these two games … I wish I could do that."
Stoltz said, "We just want to be prepared on both sides of the ball and on special teams. It all comes down to execution. The kids have to be comfortable in the things we want them to accomplish. Their reaction needs to become automatic. That's the goal of any coach."
For Greendale, Brees finished with four catches for 37 yards and Miller added two catches for 52 yards. The Panthers outgained Greenfield 365-219 in total yards.
For the Hawks, Hannah finished with 44 yards rushing and 96 yards passing.
Tests up next
Greendale next welcomes Woodland Conference newcomer Pius XI at 7 p.m. Sept. 7 in its home opener. The Popes drilled South Milwaukee, 48-22, on Friday to improve to 2-0. Quarterback Connor Senger has thrown for 543 yards and six touchdowns in his first two contests this season.
Greenfield visits rival Whitnall at 7 p.m. Sept. 7. The Falcons, 1-1 after a 46-15 loss to Wauwatosa West last week, will be opening their new stadium that night.
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