THE CITY REBORN FROM THE ASHES OF AMERICA'S MOST DISASTROUS FOREST FIRE
Come Up With 6 Turnovers In 47-7 Homecoming Rout
It is put up or shut up time for the the Peshtigo Bulldogs as they face a must win situation to get into the WIAA playoff field.
Forcing six turnovers, the Bulldogs (3-5, 3-3) kept their playoff hopes alive and snapped a two-game league losing skid with a 47-7 homecoming win over Suring Friday night. Peshtigo was in the drivers seat early racing to a 27-0 lead at the end of period one and was up 41-0 after three frames.
We had the opportunity to play on a short field a little bit. They fumbled early at the 25 yard line and later snapped the ball over the quarterbacks head out of the shotgun and we recovered that. Got a couple of early scores that really were a result of some great field position, Peshtigo head coach Sam Komp said.
Continuing the veteran coach added... we played better and rushed for over 300 yards. Our offensive and defensive lines did a lot better job then they have the last couple of weeks. Were very happy with the progress.
Peshtigo will travel to Gillett Friday night and needs to come out victorious to qualify for post-season play.
The pressure of the playoffs really doesnt bother me at all. I just want our kids to play well and if we play well, things will take care of themselves, Komp added.
After suffering consecutive losses to Wausaukee and Northern Elite, the Bulldogs bounced back to the win column thanks to a 375 yard offensive performance. Peshtigo rediscovered its running game as 51 rushes resulted in 334 yards and six touchdowns.
Junior fullback Jesse Felch battered the Suring defense for 99 yards on 13 carries, Jake Vaness 5-68, Alex Yoap 11-55 and Levi Sanborn 5-53.
Quarterback Dakota Keller went to the air only 4 times, completing 3 for 41 yards and a touchdown. Keller spotted Dakota Marino twice for 17 yards while tossing a scoring strike to senior end Joey Sparks.
The Bulldog defense kept the Suring spread attack under wraps allowing 172 yards over 50 plays. The Eagles gained 73 yards rushing on 23 attempts while quarterback Jay Tienor connected on 9 of 27 passes for 99 yards, but suffered two interceptions.
Those two picks were part of six turnovers the Eagles committed, leading to the Bulldog win. Travis Peterson and Marcus Behnke came up with the aerial thefts.
The Bulldogs took advantage of Surings generosity to put 27 points on the board in the opening period.
Starting at their own 20 to open the game, Peshtigo rode a trio of Felch runs to put the ball at the 40, before being forced to punt.
On the punt return, Suring fumbled with Levi Sanborn recovering at the 24. Quarterback Keller took it from there, scrambling out of the pocket and to the end zone. Jake Jagelski kicked the first of 5 extra points for a 7-0 lead.
Setting up shop following the ensuing kickoff, Surings drive ended the same way with a fumble as the snap sailed over the head of quarterback Tienor with defensive lineman Jordan Berth recovering at the 20. Four plays later Derrick Maye strolled in from 9 yards out at the 5:55 mark.
Peshtigo tacked on two more opening period scores in the final 2:08 for that 27-0 spread.
Travis Peterson returned a punt to the Suring 30 setting up a 4 yard run by Keller (2:08). Peshtigos fourth score of the frame was a result of another fumble and saw Sparks haul in a 24 yard pass with 1:03 remaining.
The Bulldogs padded their lead to 34-0 in the second quarter with a 55 yard drive. Felch carried to the Suring 45 before a penalty gave Peshtigo a first down at the Suring 20. Following a couple of more Felch runs, Alex Yoap found the end zone from a yard out (9:21) for the first of his two scores.
Yoap also made his way in for points with 4:33 remaining in period three on a 2 yard scamper and a 41-0 spread.
Suring registered its only score early in the fourth quarter when Tienor weaved through the Peshtigo defense from 3 yards out (11:16). Blake Strehlow tacked on the kick for a 41-7 deficit.
With time winding down in the game, Vaness broke free on a 54 yard jaunt (1:58) for that 47-7 final score.
We were pleased that the seniors were able to play their last homecoming game and possibly last game on our field and be successful doing it. Hopefully well be able to play with as much intensity and emotion on the road next week as we did this week, Komp concluded.