WHEATFIELD | Lowell had to be tired of hearing it was the best 0-2 team in Northwest Indiana. The Red Devils also hadn’t opened a season with three straight losses in 21 years.
Lowell (1-2, 1-0) put all the negative behind it Friday night at Fred Jones Field in a convincing 27-14 win over host Kankakee Valley in the Northwest Crossroads Conference opener for both teams.
“This is a great night for us and a great night for K.V.,” Lowell coach Keith Kilmer said. “It’s turning into a great rivalry the past two games.
“We made fewer mistakes and were able to capitalize.”
Kilmer was pleased his Red Devils got in the win column after two narrow losses.
“We were able to overcome that tonight, and the kids played with a lot of heart,” he said.
Lowell also regained the Milk Can trophy in the process.
“We were hyped for that,” said senior quarterback Seth Anderson.
Anderson threw two touchdown passes, and running back George Fields ran for another score befor leaving with an undisclosed injury. Junior sub Tyler Hopkins rushed for 107 yards and a touchdown.
“I was trusting my line, running the ball hard and holding onto the ball,” Hopkins said.
After Fields gave the Red Devils a 7-0 lead in the first quarter, Anderson hooked up with Colton Wilkey on a 41-yard scoring pass for a 14-7 lead with 4:16 left in the second quarter.
Anderson found Aaron Hamm from 11 yards out for a 21-7 advantage with 8:37 left in the third quarter.
The Kougars (1-2, 0-1) rallied in the fourth quarter when sophomore quarterback Darrick Webster capped a 49-yard drive with a 1-yard keeper for a 21-14 count with 3:52 left in the game.
Lowell recovered the ensuing onside kick to preserve the victory. Hopkins, added a 2-yard TD run with less than a minute left.
The Red Devils used six different running backs.
“Our kids know the next man steps in, and those guys are going to cheer them on,” Kilmer said. “They played as a team tonight.”
K.V. was its own worst enemy, losing four fumbles and threw an interception.
Webster completed six of 12 passes for 163 yards in the losing effort.