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THE CITY REBORN FROM THE ASHES OF AMERICA'S MOST DISASTROUS FOREST FIRE
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Cougars Cage Panthers in Northwoods Season Opener

Issue Date: September 30, 2020

The Coleman Cougars shook off some first quarter rust to defeat the Oconto Falls Panthers 28-6 in their first game of the season Friday.

The teams went into the second quarter scoreless, with a pair of fumble and an interception in the first quarter keeping both teams off the board.

With 11:26 to go in the first half, Owen Kinziger punched in on a one-yard run and quarterback Cayden Bintz added a two-point conversion.

Oconto Falls quarter back Tucker Bouche completed a long pass to Dylan Thompson in the quarter, but he would throw an interception at Cougars' 15-yard line which Peter Kuchta returned to the 34.

Bintz threw a 35-yard touchdown pass to Tyler Blanchard with 28 seconds left in the first half and connected with Pete Kuchta for the two-pointer to make it 16-0 before half.

Bintz scored on a six-yard run with 2:24 to go in the third to make it 22-0, but Oconto Falls countered with a 60-yard touchdown pass from Tucker Bouche to Owen Huber with 29 seconds to play in the quarter. Both teams' two-point conversions failed, with the score sitting at 22-6.

With eight minutes to go, Bintz added his third touchdown of the day on a three-yard toss to Joey Olson to pretty much finish things off, 28-6.

For the first game of the season, Coleman's coaching staff was happy with the team's offensive performance, but Oconto Falls coach Nick Bohl was also pleased with his defense, despite allowing 28 points and 345 total yards, including 152 on the ground for Kinziger, 71 for Blanchard and a couple of touchdowns for Bintz.

"Our defense played their tails off," Bohl said. "We had a lot of kids play almost 200 snaps tonight. The way our defense played tonight, I was very proud. Twenty-eight points is quite a bit, but if you break it down, our defense played pretty well."

Like Coleman teams have been for years, defense and a running offense will be the foundation for Coleman this year.

The Cougars intercepted four passes, holding first-year varsity quarterback Bouche to 9-for-26 passing for 184 yards.

"Our coverage was pretty good. Actually, our offense wasted some of their turnovers, but for our first time running a new defense, I was really happy," Coleman coach Jeffrey Bronson said. "The long touchdown, our youth showed and that's going to happen. We're back where we have a ton of sophomores on the field. They're going to grow up every night. They made some mistakes and they played through it, so that was great to see."

Both teams know what they need to work on for the rest of the season, which will consist of a conference season with no non-conference games.

The Cougars have to give their offensive line some time to mature, with some inexperience showing Friday night, Bronson said. He called the Cougars' young offensive line "a work in progress," saying they allowed too much penetration, but they grew up a bit Friday.

For Oconto Falls, getting the full team back in competition is the first step. The Panthers were missing nine starters on the night, including three players on the offensive line.

Wausaukee Shocks Lena/STAA in Season Opener 

The Wausaukee Rangers were the victors in Friday nights showdown in Lena, taking down the Lena/St. Thomas Aquinas Titans 34-18 in area eight man football.

Wausaukee posted 341 yards of total offense while holding the Titans to 254. All of Wausaukee's yards were gained on the ground. Lena/STAA's yardage was split between the ground and the air with 91 coming in from the rush and the other 163 from the air.

The first quarter saw only one score, and it came from the Rangers. Wausaukee's Corey Boesen broke lose on a 26 yard run to make it a 6-0 game before carrying the ball in on the extra point run.

Wausaukee got the games second teedee in the second frame with four minutes and forty seven second remaining. On this score Kamden Stumbris broke in from three yards out. The two point run failed. 

Lena/STAA answered 15 seconds later on the game clock with a huge 65 yard pass  from Logan Shallow to Ethan Russell which was followed by a failed two point conversion run.

With 14 seconds remaining till the intermission Boesen scored from six yards back, bringing the halftime score to 20-6 in Wausaukee's favor.

The Titans scored the only teedee of the third frame, getting in off a 65 yard Logan Shallow rush.

With the fourth quarter ticking away the Rangers pounded in two consecutive scores. The first a two yard rush from Boesen with a two point conversion pass from Stumbris to Brendan Versaskas and the second a 23 yard Boesen run which was followed by a failed two point rush attempt.

Before the game was finished Lena/STAA punched in a 10 yard pass from Shallow to Lane Whiting, giving the game its final score of 34-18.

"Wausaukee was just bigger than us," said Titan's co-head coach Dale Lange. "and after a 14 point lead we were able to start and move the ball with some passing and spreading it out. The Rangers were able to control the ground with some very strong running and power football. We had one TD Called back on a penalty and dropped some passes, so it was closer than the score appears. Another factor we will need to correct is the extra points. We didn't connect on a single one and that can make the difference in winning or not."

For the Titans Shallow was six of 15 through the air for 163 yards and two touchdowns. Shallow also led in the rush game for the Titans with 62 yards and one teedee on 11 carries.

Wausaukee's Boesen rushed for 207 yards and four touchdowns on 30 carries while Stumbris added up 81 yards and one TD on 21 carries.

Suring Shuts-out Gillett 38-0

The Suring Eagles went wild on the Gillett Tigers Friday night by blowing away the Tigers with a 38-0 shutout.

After a scoreless first quarter Suring blew the game wide open scoring 30 points before the intermission. Suring posted one more score in the third before slowing down the pace.

Suring's dominating performance was led by Gavin Fredenburgh who rushed for 110 yards and one TD on seven carries. He also scored one extra point. Jeremy Hansel followed him up with 84 yards on five carries while Taron Haak posted 38 yards and two teedees on 10 carries. Through the air Hansel posted a one of four showing with four yards gained.

Gillett"s Andy Lemmens rushed for a team high 17 yards on 13 carries while Brandon DeBauch got 10 yards on four carries. Lemmens passed for one yard in a one of six performance.

Crivitz Wins Season Opener at Northland Pines

The Crivitz Wolverines traveled to Northland Pines for a football season opener which saw the Wolverines victorious after four quarters of hard fought football, 20-12.

After a defensive battle during the first quarter Northland Pines broke the silence when Nolan Lurvey completed a pass to Kayden Kroeplin for the 42 yard score with one minute remaining in the first quarter. The Wolverines defense said no on the extra point with a block

It took a good portion of the second frame for the Wolverines to strike back. But they did, with 4:38 left on the clock Eian Baumann sprinted in on the keeper from one yard out to even the score. After the missed extra point the game was tied 6-6.

With less than two minutes until the intermission Northland Pines scored its last teedee of the game, getting in a huge break away run from Lurvey for the 46 yard score. Again the extra point kick was wide out giving the NP boys the 12-6 lead.

Starting again in the third quarter the game went back into a defensive stalemate with neither team pushing to far into the other territory.

With time quickly eroding the Wolverines needed to kick their offense into gear and thy did just that, driving to the end zone and finishing a hard fought drive with a three yard Baumann keeper to pay dirt with seven minutes remaining. On the ensuing two point conversion attempt Baumann completed a pass to Kaden Spalding which was good. But a penalty nullified the two point score. On the second attempt the ball was fumbled and recovered by Northland Pines. After the conversion drama the Wolverines defense dug in and forced a punt. 

With five minutes to work with Crivitz quickly worked it's way into the red zone and finished off the 11 play drive with Dillan Gehm four yard rush with 41 seconds remaining, giving the Wolverines the 18-12 lead. After a long day of failed extra points and two point conversions the Wolverines finally got one in as Baumann sprinted in for the two point bonus and the 20-12 lead

Northland Pines had 30 seconds to try and even the score but on a pass completion to Andrew Hartwig. Wolverine Kevin Krychowiak made the open field tackle, ending the game.

For the Wolverines Baumann passed his way to 20 yards in a two of four showing. Baumann also led the ground game with 132 yards and two teedees on 22 carries. His longest play of the day was a team leading 19 yard jaunt. Dillan Gehm produced 63 yards and one TD on  16 carries with a long of 15 yards. Mitchell Vanderpoel pulled in one pass for 11 yards. Gehm also shined on defense were he led with 5 solo tackles

Northland Pines' Lurvey passed his way to 140 yards and one TD on eight of his 14 pass attempts. Luke Rhode rushed for a team high 69 yards on nine carries. Morris Justice led the defense with five solo tackles, three assisted tackles and one strip sack.

Northern Elite Takes Win Over Crandon

The Northern Elite Predators opened this season's football action with a solid 30-16 win over the visiting Crandon Cardinals.

Though the Predators would dominate the second half of the game, Crandon was able to work in the games first teedee as their H. Kane busted lose on a huge 81 yard end zone visit. The following two point conversion was successful thanks to a run by C. Bissonette, giving the Cardinals the 8-0 lead.

Northern Elite jumped into action in the second frame with an R. Erickson one yard goal line breaker followed by an Andrew Niven two point conversion to tie things up at 8-8.

Returning from the intermission the Predators began creating some distance between themselves and the Cardinals as Landon Kalfoken scored off a three yard rush as well as carrying in the two point conversion for the 16-8 lead.

Before the end of the third frame Erickson scored again, this time from seven yards back which was followed by a Niven extra point kick that was good. At that point the Predators controlled the scoreboard 23-8.

Northern Elite's final teedee of the night came in the fourth quarter off a Niven four yard jaunt. Niven also kicked the extra point.

Crandon scored the games final teedee late in the fourth quarter off a K. Keao nine yard rush to bring the game to its final score of 30-16 in favor of the Predators.

For Northern Elite Ryan Erickson passed his way to 44 yards in a two of tow performance. On the ground Erickson posted 110 yards and two teedees on his 16 carries. Niven got 88 yards and one TD on 16 carries.

Crandon's Logan Gretzinger passed for 28 yards in a two of four showing while teammate Hudson Kane posted 88 yards on four carries.


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