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For opponents of the Clear Lake Lions, these are the saddest of possible words - "Jaylen DeVries touchdown pass." 

On Friday night, in their season-opening game against the Osage Green Devils, the Lions showed off their dominant passing game, as DeVries went 17-of-20 passing with four touchdowns and 343 yards in the Lions 56-12 win.

"It was a good team win," DeVries said. "Both sides of the ball were locked in. We had a good week of preparation and I think that really helped us tonight."

The offense got off to a fast start. In the first quarter, sophomore Jagger Schmitt scored a rushing touchdown to get the Lions on the board.

At 5:45 in the first quarter, DeVries threw a 45-yard touchdown pass to senior Kody Kearns. At 1:59 left in the quarter, he threw a ball from the 21-yard line that Kearns caught near midfield and ran all the way for a touchdown. And with 18.5 seconds left in the first quarter, DeVries threw another ball Kearns' way, which he caught and ran in for a 42-yard touchdown. 

Three passes, three touchdowns and a 28-0 Clear Lake lead. 

Though Friday night was Kearns' chance to shine, the Lions do not lack for other receiving threats. Both the quarterback and head coach Jared DeVries agreed that, if anything, the Lions might have too many options.

"We've got guys on the bench who can't even get on the field because we have so many guys," Jaylen DeVries said. "If (Kearns) is open, that's who we're going to. If the tight ends are open 20 straight plays, then we're going to throw it to him 20 straight plays. We don't really have a number one guy."

After the game, Kearns was in awe of his quarterback.

"We were one fire," Kearns said of the first quarter. "We have a great quarterback. Jaylen, he's amazing. We've just been all working together."

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The two have known each other since eighth grade and in that time, have developed a rapport, built through off-season workouts and weight-room sessions. Now that they are both seniors, Kearns is hopeful they can go out on top. 

"We can accomplish a lot," Kearns said. "It's not just me, we have a good core at every position. I feel very good about it."

In the second quarter, Jaylen DeVries got creative. Looking at a fourth-and-10, at the Osage 15-yard line, DeVries dropped back to pass. Seeing no receivers open, he scrambled and dodged more than a half dozen tacklers, before diving into the end-zone for an unlikely touchdown. The play sent the crowd into a frenzy and it quickly became clear the Green Devils just couldn't find a way to stop the Southern Illinois commit from scoring.

"My initial read wasn't there, so I had to scramble around," Jaylen said. "I was looking downfield for receivers, because they are the guys that make the plays. I couldn't find any, I saw a lane and got lucky. I broke a few tackles and luckily, I got in."

Coach DeVries was overall very happy with his team's performance. The former NFL defensive end is always on the lookout for ways to make his team better and even though he was irritated with one of his team's defensive drives and a botched punt late in the game that led to a Clear Lake first down, he was overall pleased with the victory.

""The kids executed and played hard," coach DeVries said. "We only had 36 offensive plays, so we scored quickly. We need to control the ball better and we got lazy on defense on an 18-play drive. But overall, they competed very well." 

DeVries threw one last touchdown pass in the first half, on a 51-yard throw to Carson Toebe, and also scored on a quarterback sneak in the third quarter to put the Lions up by the eventual winning margin of 56-12.

He knows that after this season, he will get to keep playing quarterback at an even higher level. But for now, in the stadium where he has accomplished so much on the field, Jaylen DeVries was excited to begin his last season as a Lion, on a dominating note. 

"Before the game, you realize this is your last first game, as a senior" Jaylen said. "It kind of goes through your mind, but once you get the pads on and get that first hit, it's just another football game."

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