His worst fears, unfortunately, came to fruition at Fisher Field.
The Spartans spoiled Senior Night by exploding for a 63-7 non-conference victory over the Tigers.
Grayson Bastin tallied six touchdowns as Homestead lit up the scoreboard like a Christmas Tree in running right past the Tigers in front of a large, orange-clad crowd.
Warsaw, which falls to 1-1, has now been outscored 166-17 in its last three meetings with the Spartans. Homestead, which beat Huntington North 53-12 in its opener, improves to 2-0.
The key for the Tigers, according to Jensen, is how they respond for next week’s Northern Lakes Conference opener at Plymouth.
“This game can still catapult us to good things,” said a very positive Jensen. “It all depends on how our players respond and who shows up next week. We have to learn from this and be ready to play next week because Plymouth will be.
“Next week is a big week for us. We’re 0-0 now going into that NLC opener. It’s all about are we going to meet the challenge. I believe in these kids and I think they will.”
Bastin started the game with a fumble on Homestead’s first play from scrimmage.
The 5-9, 185-pound senior quickly atoned for his early miscue with a one-yard touchdown run and a seven-yarder for a 14-0 lead after the first quarter. The Spartans were up 35-0 at halftime after a 10-yard fumble return by Kam Hladish less than a minute into the second stanza and two more trips to the end zone by Bastin. He scored on a 20-yard toss from Matt Skowronek on a throwback screen play and added a 15-yard rushing score.
Bastin, for good measure, opened the second half by taking the Tiger kickoff and racing 95 yards to pay dirt. He then scored on an 11-yard run and Frank Martin dashed in from 45 yards out to make it 56-0.The Tigers, who won 20-14 at Columbia City in their opener, got on the board when Jason Taylor rambled seven yards for a touchdown with just 13.8 seconds left in the third quarter.
Bastin was not the only weapon that the high-octane offense of the Spartans boasted. Senior quarterback Skowronek was 10-12 passing for 211 yards. He has replaced Zach Terrell, who threw for 2,625 yards and 38 touchdowns for Homestead in 2011. Terrell is now at Western Michigan.
The Spartans also got big plays from star receiver Isaac Griffith. The All-Stater, who is bound for IU, had four catches for 94 yards. Griffith, a 6-2, 175-pounder had 60 catches for 1,112 yards and 22 touchdowns last season as Homestead went 10-1 (the 15th straight season with at least 10 wins).
“Wow,” was the first word out of Jensen’s mouth in the post game. “This offense they have this year is in some ways tougher to prepare for than last year’s where they threw it all over the field. They just attack you every way.
“They have a lot of weapons, a lot of speed and are well-coached. They exploit your weaknesses as a defense. We needed to control the line offensively and make first downs and we didn’t do that.
“Once they got going, you kind of saw the old Warsaw team. We had our heads down. We didn’t meet the challenge tonight.”Junior running back Tristan McClone, who had 295 yards on 43 carries and three touchdowns in the week one win at Columbia City, managed 44 yards on 17 carries Friday night. Junior quarterback Austin Head was 8-13 passing for 80 yards for the Tigers. Senior Taylor Cone led Warsaw with five receptions for 44 yards.
Sophomore Ben Plummer had a fumble recovery and senior Forde Ness and interception for the Tigers.
Warsaw (1-1) plays at Plymouth next Friday at 7:30 p.m. The Rockies won 28-20 Friday night at Rochester. Plymouth lost its opener to Bremen with several players out due to an off-the-field incident.
Homestead (2-0) hosts East Noble.