Sandy • Much has been said about the players the Jordan football team lost from its state championship football team a year ago.
As long as Austin Kafentzis is around, the Beetdiggers will remain contenders. The University of Wisconsin commit accounted for 417 total yards and four touchdowns to lead Jordan past visiting Fremont 40-12 on Friday.
Kafentzis threw for 305 yards, ran for 112 more and nabbed the first three interceptions of his high school career on defense.
"You're always going to have nerves, but you've got to be able to use them in the right way," Kafentzis said. "It was a long offseason and we were anxious for the first game. We got the nerves out of our system. We came together as a team."
After watching three drives stall inside Fremont's 25-yard line in the first half, the Beetdiggers scored on their first five possessions of the second half. The first score took just one play, as Kafentzis connected with Connor Bolingbroke on a 72-yard pass play. The two hooked up again later for a 48-yard score.
Though Jordan outgained Fremont 246-101 in the first half, the game was tied 6-6 at halftime. A pair of fumbles proved costly for Jordan.
"We didn't execute in the first half and had a lot of turnovers," Jordan coach Eric Kjar said. "We have a lot of new guys and they tried to get their feet wet in the first half. We blew some routes where Austin would wait on his read and it wasn't there. We talked at the half about mentally where we were supposed to be."
Kafentzis, meanwhile, overcame a shaky start to complete 20 of 34 passes. He threw for 177 yards and two touchdowns in the second half.
"It was a very emotional day for him," Kjar said of Kafentzis, whose grandmother passed away earlier in the day. "That's just how he is. His ability doesn't ever surprise me. He helps break guys in."
Bolingbroke caught five passes for 181 yards and Clay Moss rushed for 138 yards and two touchdowns for the Beetdiggers. The outcome helped soften the loss of Cooper Clark, who left with a leg injury in the third quarter.
"This talks a lot about the hard work the kids put into the program," Kjar said. "They've got to be their own guys and develop in their own way. "
Parker Preator scored on a 95-yard kickoff return and Paxton Merrill caught an 11-yard touchdown pass for the Silverwolves, who never led.
Kafentzis was especially pleased with the outcome.
"I'm happy our team took it in a positive way than a negative way," he said. "I'm just happy that we improved. We gained from it."
Jordan travels to California to play Cathedral Catholic next week.