REXBURG— Late in the first quarter Friday in Rexburg, Madison High School quarterback Jordan Porter rolled to his left looking for an open receiver.
Instead of that receiver, he found a trio of Meridian defenders.
Porter reversed field, bolted down the right sideline and leaped for the goal line.
The Bobcats scored one play later, but Porter’s arm and legs were the theme of the night as Madison cruised to a 50-12 win over Meridian in the opening round of the 5A football playoffs.
“I give a lot of credit to my teammates,” Porter said. “I was just trying to make a play for my team and they made the blocks and allowed me to get downfield.”
Porter punished the Warriors’ defense in the first half, accounting for 331 total yards and five touchdowns.
Porter and the rest of the starters never saw the field in the second half.
The Bobcats scored on each of their three first-quarter possessions with Porter scrambles setting up each. A 2-yard run by Porter started the scoring, four minutes later Blake Moseley scored on a one-yard run.
Before anyone’s seats were warm, it was 14-0 Madison.
Porter capped off the first quarter a little more than two minutes later with a 12-yard run. Madison led 21-0 after one quarter.
“We executed the best we have the entire season,” Bobcats coach Mitch Buck said. “We moved the ball on the ground and through the air. We played on a good surface. We really needed a good game like tonight to give us some confidence going forward.”
Meridian put together just one complete drive during the game. It came at the end of the first quarter and seconds into the second when a couple of long passes from Warriors quarterback Nate Weddle moved the ball down to the Madison 1-yard. Luke Schraer scored on a one-yard run to cut the deficit to 21-6.
Friday night, however, the Bobcats could do no wrong.
Moseley returned the ensuing kickoff 85 yards for a touchdown. Three more Madison touchdowns later, the Bobcats went into the locker room leading 47-6.
The game was played with a running clock the entire second half.
“This was the best game we have played all year,” Buck told his team after the win. “We took advantage of all the things that went in our favor and now we get to keep playing.”
Porter finished the night 14-of-21 for 251 yards and three touchdowns and added 80 more on the ground for two more touchdowns.
Coy Backstein hauled in six passes for 120 yards and a pair of touchdowns. Joe Dougherty caught four passes for 74 yards and a touchdown.
Madison (7-3) travels to Coeur d’Alene for a quarterfinal game next week.
MADISON 50, MERIDIAN 12
Meridian 0 6 0 6 — 12
Madison 21 26 3 0 — 50
Mad— Jordan Porter 2 run (Chris Edstrom kick)
Mad — Blake Moseley 1 run (Edstrom kick)
Mad — Porter 12 run (Edstrom kick)
Mer — Luke Schraer 1 run (kick failed)
Mad — Moseley 85 kick-off return (kick failed)
Mad — Coy Backstein 27 pass from Porter (Edstrom kick)
Mad — Joe Dougherty 27 pass from Porter (Edstrom kick)
Mad — Beckstein 31 pass from Porter (kick failed)
Mad — Eckstrom 39 field goal
Mer — Caden Clark 57 pass from Nate Weddle (kick failed)
RUSHING — Meridian: Luke Schraer 7-19-1, Nate Weddle 9-23, Javen Woodall 2-5, Bridger Mortensen 1-(-1). Madison: Blake Moseley 10-28-1, Jordan Porter 8-80-2, Karson Hastings 2-7, Easton Cordero 6-7, Chris Edstrom 5-8.
PASSING — Meridian: Nate Weddle 15-25-229-1-2. Madson: Jordan Porter 14-21-251-3-0, Easton Cordero 1-4-11-0-0.
RECEIVING — Meridian: Caden Clark 5-106, Zach Kinzel 6-91, Luke Schraer 1-7, Carter Baumgartner 2-23, Bridger Mortensen 1-2. Madison: Karson Hastings 2-40, Joe Dougherty 4-74-1, Coy Backstein 6-120-2, Malachi Valora 5-32, Hunter Lewis 1-11.