Mountaineers snag first ‘W’

GWINN – On the back of James Christiansen’s 291-yard rushing performance, Iron Mountain claimed its first victory of season, downing Gwinn 27-8 in Mid-Peninsula Conference football Friday evening.

“Christiansen led our team on both sides of the ball,” Mountaineers coach Robin Marttila said. “He just had a great game.

“The goal tonight was to get our first win, and we’re happy to be able to accomplish that.”

Christiansen scored on a 52-yard burst in the second quarter that put Iron Mountain in front for good.

Brock Grenier gave Iron Mountain the game’s first points with a five-yard score early in the second quarter. A 40-yard run by Christiansen helped fuel the drive.

Gwinn answered with Luke Sinnaeve leading the Modeltowners down the field and scoring from 11 yards out. A little more than two minutes later, Iron Mountain came back with Christiansen’s long TD.

Gwinn threatened one more time before half. But the Mountaineers grabbed a fumble to stop the drive just outside of the red zone.

“We were really happy with our defense tonight,” Marttila said. “To hold a team to eight points is doing something right.”

Cole Rossato and Jacob Cousineau were among IM’s tackle leaders.

A pair of Qualley keepers in-close provided insurance touchdowns for the Mountaineers in the third and fourth quarters. Christiansen scampered 67 yards inside the 10 to set up Qualley’s first score. Gwinn looked to have that touchdown answered, but a 43-yard scoring run was called back due to holding. Later in the same drive, the Mountaineers pounced on another Modeltowner fumble.

Iron Mountain finished with 353 yards of offense, all on the ground. Qualley ran for 45 yards.

Sinnaeve finished with 209 yards on 29 carries for Gwinn.

Iron Mountain (1-1, 1-1) hosts West Iron County Friday in the Mountaineers’ home opener.

Iron Mountain 0 13 7 7 – 27

Gwinn 0 8 0 0 – 8

Second quarter

IM – Brock Grenier 5 run (CJ Qualley kick), 10:08.

G – Luke Sinnaeve 11 run (Sinnaeve run), 7:24.

IM – James Christiansen 52 run (kick failed), 4:59.

Third quarter

IM – Qualley 6 run (Qualley kick), 5:55.

Fourth quarter

IM – Qualley 5 run (Qualley kick), 6:18.