Lena/STAA Wins Rubber Match With WausaukeeIssue Date: November 18, 2020
An unusual football season came to a fittingly unusual end for the Lena/St. Thomas and Wausaukee football teams last week.
Given potentially long travels for playoff games, Lena/STAA and Wausaukee both mutually agreed to withdraw from the WIAA playoffs to play a rubber match and break a 1-1 season tie, coined the M&O Pod Championship, with the two teams playing for what was called the "COVID Cup."
In what is perhaps a microcosm of 2020, the cup broke. As for what happened on the field, the Lena/STAA squad pulled away from Wausaukee late to get a 26-8 win.
Wausaukee took a first-quarter lead five minutes into the game on a 25-yard touchdown run by Dominick Brunette. Corey Boesen scored a two-point conversion to make it 8-0.
Logan Shallow scored on a 78-yard scamper to daylight for Lena/STAA with a minute left in the first to cut the lead, but the two-point conversion failed and Wausaukee held onto its 8-6 lead.
That Ranger lead would hold until there was five minutes left in the third quarter. Shallow scored his second of three touchdowns to give his team a 12-8 lead, and he broke the game open six minutes later with another five-yard score.
With 3:19 to go in the game, Ethan Russell found some space and made it count, scoring from 47 yards out. Blake DeDamos tossed to Sam Marquardt for the two-pointer to finish things off.
The 26-8 final score isn't the best indicator of what a hard-fought game it was.
"It was a very even game until the very end," Lena/STAA coach Dale Lange said. "Wausaukee played hard and we take our hats off to them."
Marquardt led Lena/STAA in total yards with 23 carries for 147 yards and a 2-for-6 passing line for 30 yards. Shallow ran 17 times for 120 yards and completed his only pass for 20 yards. Russell ran six times for 65 yards and had all three of the team's receptions for 50 yards.
For Wausaukee, Boesen ran 15 times for 63 yards and Kamden Stumbris turned his 13 carries into 74 yards.
Lena/STAA won five straight games to finish the season.
"I was very proud of all our players and it was good to see how they improved over the season," Lange said. "We were able to play eight games this fall and after an 0-3 start we finished 5-3, now we need to build on this for next year. We will miss the seniors and wish them the best of luck."
Prey to Hawks in Playoff Opener
The Marinette Marines will head into their final game of the season searching for that elusive first win after a 46-6 defeat at the hands of the Shawano Hawks Friday night.
Friday's game started off on the wrong foot when the Hawks returned a punt for a touchdown with just over four minutes played. Three minutes later, the Hawks were celebrating in the end zone once again, as they made it 16-0 with 4:25 to go in the first.
Marinette cut it to 16-6 in the second with an Adam Lemery touchdown run, but that would be Marinette's final score of the night.
By halftime, it was 38-6 with Marinette seeing Shawano score on a touchdown pass with 9:24 to go in the second and recover the ensuing onside kick, scoring again with seven minutes to go in the second to stretch the lead to 32-6.
With 26 seconds to go in the half, Shawano punched in the final nail in the first-half coffin. Timm scores on a 58 yard run to open the second half. That touchdown and a two point conversion made the score 46-6 Hawks and ended the scoring for the night,
Shawano quarterback Gage Timm went 8-for-11 passing for 137 yards, two touchdowns and an interception. He also ran for two scores on four carries for 63 yards.
Marinette's offensive leader was Adam Lemery, who ran for 101 yards.
"We just didn't show up. They were physical, we weren't, and that's the bottom line. They're a better team than we are," Marinette coach Nate Anderson said. "You've got to hang onto something and try to stay positive, because that's all you've got sometimes."
Anderson said he felt his team matched up well with Peshtigo, the Marines' Thursday opponent. That game will wrap up the Marines' season.
Panthers Come Up Short as Wrightstown Rallys in the
The game was won in the fourth quarter Friday when Oconto Falls and Wrightstown met on the gridiron.
Oconto Falls struck first with a one-yard touchdown run by Tucker Bouche in the second quarter, but the game was won in the fourth by Wrightstown by a 28-6 tally when all was said and done.
Neither team scored in the first quarter, with Bouche's second-quarter score breaking the deadlock. The two-point conversion failed and Wrightstown matched the touchdown and inched ahead with an extra point later in the quarter.
In the third quarter, it was a stalemate once again, but Wrightstown broke the game wide open in the fourth, with two rushing touchdowns and an interception return for a touchdown.
Wrightstown would intercept Bouche three times in the game. In total he threw 16 times, completing four passes for 65 yards.
Owen Huber led Oconto Falls with 47 yards receiving on three catches, with 17 carries going for 66 yards as well.
Oconto Take Playoff Loss to Bonduel
The crowd at Friday's WIAA playoff contest between the Bonduel Bears and the visiting Oconto Blue Devils, saw Bonduel's football squad thwart Oconto by a final verdict of 43-16.
The Bears hold a 8-0 record. They play next when they travel to Manawa for a non-league contest on Thursday, November 19. Bonduel will play a Wolves squad coming off a 46-6 non-league win over Mishicot.
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