Every football team preaches defending its home turf, but Pullman seems to take it more seriously than most.
The Greyhounds routed East Valley 41-0 on homecoming to start 1-0 in Great Northern League play Friday at Hobbs Field in their second home shutout of the season.
Pullman (4-1) has outscored its opponents 132-6 in three home games so far. No, that is not a typo.
“You always talk about defending your home turf and our guys have really taken that to heart,” Pullman coach David Cofer said.
With several starters missing, the Greyhounds stepped up to produce an all-around team win in every sense of the cliche phrase.
Two Pullman quarterbacks, Riley Pettitt and Carson Coulter, combined to throw for 218 yards and four touchdowns. Seven different receivers had catches.
Six rushers carried the ball for 165 yards, led by 81 yards from Bogey Perkins.
Receiver Sam Tingstad stepped up with top wideout Isaiah Strong on the sideline with a hand injury. Tingstad had seven receptions for 66 yards and a pair of touchdowns.
“I can’t give our line enough credit — definitely giving our quarterbacks enough time to make a throw,” Tingstad said. “I just try to run my routes as best I can. ... I think tonight was just my night.”
Tingstad, who also is the team’s kicker, was a scoring machine for Pullman. The senior was 2 for 2 on field goals and 5 for 5 on PATs.
Between his kicking and receiving, Tingstad scored 23 of Pullman’s points.
“He plays with passion,” Cofer said of Tingstad. “Our team really follows his mindset. He’s one of the toughest guys we have.
“To see his work in practice get rewarded tonight was huge.”
Pullman used two traditional quarterbacks for the first time this season in the game.
Pettitt, a sophomore who has started all season, was 14-of-21 passing for 95 yards with one touchdown and one interception.
Coulter saw his first action this season in returning from a knee injury. The junior went 9 of 15 for 123 yards, three touchdowns and zero interceptions.
Cofer said the plan was to use both of them.
“Riley has just done an incredible job all year,” Cofer said. “He was going to be our starter going in, knowing we’d use both of them.
“Carson has been champing at the bit for a while to get in. I thought both of them played really well.”
Pullman was held to a Tingstad 20-yard field goal for its first points before scoring a touchdown minutes later on a 13-yard fade from Coulter to Tingstad.
Pullman added two more touchdowns in the first half and went into the locker room up 24-0.
Coulter found Tingstad again for a 32-yard score in the third quarter and Pullman didn’t look back from there.
On defense, the ’Hounds held the Knights (1-4) to 44 yards of offense.
Perkins and Rian Colon Fee each recorded sacks for Pullman, and defensive back Ryan Bickelhaupt grabbed a pair of interceptions.
Cofer said Bickelhaupt has risen from a JV player last year to a defensive mainstay this season.
“Every single week he does something to impress us,” Cofer said. “He was in the right place at the right time. His instincts are really good.”
Pullman took a hit in the second half when Colon Fee, a star defensive lineman and fullback, left the field with an injury. Cofer said he’s unsure of Fee’s status.
Next week, Pullman plays at Clarkston in what could be the game of the season in the GNL. The Bantams beat East Valley 50-49 in triple overtime Friday.
“That’s just a good way to start off league,” Tingstad said. “We had a rough loss against Moscow (Sept. 27), but we came back practiced well and (now) we have a big game coming up against Clarkston.”
East Valley 0 0 0 0 —0
Pullman 17 7 10 7 —41
PULLMAN — Sam Tingstad 20 field goal, 6:54.
PULLMAN — Tingstad 13 pass from Carson Coulter (Tingstad kick), 3:42.
PULLMAN — Rian Colon Fee 2 run (Tingstad kick), 2:57.
PULLMAN — Mason Emerson 13 pass from Riley Pettitt (Tingstad kick), 6:02.
PULLMAN — Tingstad 32 pass from Coulter (Tingstad kick), 6:53.
PULLMAN — Tingstad 27 field goal, 3:57.
PULLMAN — Bogey Perkins 3 pass from Coulter (Tingstad kick), 4:48.
RUSHING — East Valley: Zach Honegger 4-28, Ryan Conrath 2-15, Henry Stevens 11-2, Caden Katsel 5-(-4), team 1-(-11). Pullman: Perkins 8-81, Jason Tran 8-34, Evan Strong 6-22, Rian Colon Fee 2-16, Coulter 4-14, Emerson 2-4, team 2-(-6).
PASSING — East Valley: Stevens 5-20-2--14. Pullman: Coulter 9-15-0--123. Pettitt 14-21-1--95.
RECEIVING — East Valley: Nick Walsh 2-13, Conrath 2-6, Katsel 1-(-5). Pullman: Tingstad 7-66, Ethan Kramer 5-55, Emerson 5-42, Zach Farnsworth 1-23, Perkins 2-21, Ryan Bickelhaupt 2-6, Strong 1-5.
Stephan Wiebe can be reached at email@example.com and on Twitter at @StephanSports.