Keldon Keja scores 4 TDs as the Indians run past the Polar Bears

Chris Harris, DLJ Sports
Four Winds quarterback Keldon Keja (12) drops back for a pass during the first half of a NDHSAA 9-Man football game Friday, Sept 13, in Fort Totten.

FORT TOTTEN — On Larimore’s opening possession, it caught Four Winds off guard with a trick play that resulted in a quick lead.

And then the Indians quickly made swift work of the Polar Bears.

Junior quarterback Keldon Keja accounted for four touchdowns, his younger brother Kelson added two more and the Indians dispatched Larimore 40-6 Friday, Sept. 13.

“I thought we played well,” said co-head coach Mark Bishop. “We can definitely celebrate this win tonight.”

The Polar Bears (0-4) scored on the first play of the game when Ryan Sletten connected with a wide open Eric Hoffman on a wide receiver reverse throwback pass to the quarterback that went 67 yards 46 seconds into the game that gave Larimore the 6-0 lead after the failed two-point conversion.

Then the Indians (2-0) reeled off 40 unanswered points, beginning with Keldon’s first touchdown of the game, a 51-yard pass to Jaeshaun Shaw on their opening possession. The Indians then went 88 yards on seven plays, capped off by a 9-yard touchdown scamper by Kelson and an eight point lead after Keldon punched in the two-point conversion.

Kelson opened the second quarter with his second score of the game, this one an 11-yard run and Keldon found Shaw in the end zone to complete the two-point play. Keldon found Shaw two more times for 6 and an 11-yard touchdown pass with 31 seconds remaining before halftime on a 35-yard touchdown along the near sideline on their opening drive of the second half that gave Four Winds the 28 point advantage.

Keldon’s 5-yard run late in the third quarter prompted the game to finish with a running clock.

“I’m proud of our guys, proud of our guys — they played well. Everyone got to play; wins like these are fun,” Bishop said.

The victory marked the first one for the Indians on their field at Four Winds High School in three years, after going winless in 2017 and not having any home games at all in 2018.

“It was probably the biggest crowd I’ve ever seen here,” said Bishop. “Maybe not in the bleachers but if you look beyond the fence, there’s a ton of cars over there. Our boys know that, they see that. They know that people are watching, hearing [car] horns blowing every time we score and our boys get pumped for that.

“Playing on this field is exciting.”

The Indians will be back home Thursday, Sept. 19, to face Dunseith out of Region 2. The Dragons will come into the game on a three-game losing streak.

“Dunseith is probably the hardest team left on our schedule. So we definitely have to play better than we did tonight,” Bishop said.

Keldon’s interception in the second quarter set up his touchdown to Shaw, who finished with three receiving touchdowns and an interception for the Indians.

Chris Harris can be reached at and on Twitter: @ChrisHarris_DLJ

Larimore at Four Winds box score

Larimore 6 0 0 0 — 6

Four Winds 14 14 12 0 — 40

First Quarter

L — Hoffmann 67 pass from Sletten (run failed), 11:14.

FW — Shaw 51 pass from Keld. Keja (run failed), 8:28.

FW — Kels. Keja 9 run (Keld. Keja run), 3:09.

Second Quarter

FW — Kels. Keja 11 run (Shaw pass from Keld. Keja), 11:06.

FW — Shaw 11 pass from Keld. Keja (pass failed), :31.

Third Quarter

FW — Shaw 35 pass from Keld. Keja (run failed), 7:58.

FW — Keld. Keja 5 run (pass failed), 3:55.