Grizzlies score early, often in lopsided triumph

A fast start served the Franklin College football team well in Saturday’s 59-30 victory at Bluffton.

Scoring two touchdowns in each of the first two quarters, the Grizzlies established dominance early in improving to 2-0 in the Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference standings and 2-2 overall.

“Our conditioning really helped us out today,” Franklin coach Mike Leonard said. “It was really hot out on that turf and our guys battled through it and never complained.

“Both sides of the ball were great from the opening kickoff. The offense wasted no time scoring first and our defense kept shutting them down and giving the ball back to our offense.”

Which means putting the football in the hands of quarterback Chase Burton.

The senior padded some already gaudy career passing totals by completing 22 of 32 passes against Bluffton for 453 yards. His five touchdown passes were to five different receivers — Lee Wroblewski, Deontez Alexander, Tanner Wroblewski, Brad Bonomini and Ben Fleet.

Franklin College amassed a season-high total of 586 yards of offense. Alexander finished the day with nine catches for 140 yards. Defensively, senior linebacker Nathan Warman led the way for the Grizzlies with 10 tackles.

Leonard’s squad hosts Manchester on Saturday in what is the team’s annual Pediatric Cancer Awareness Day. Kickoff is at 1:30 p.m.

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Mike Beas is a sports writer for the Daily Journal. He can be reached at