{{featured_button_text}}

The frustration on the Tremper football team's sideline Friday night was as palpable and — as the game wore on — as steamy as the blanket of humidity that swallowed Ameche Field.

Every time the Trojans did something positive, something negative followed almost immediately, and the result was an ugly 32-14 Southeast Conference loss to upstart Racine Park.

Whether it was a fumble after a big play, a questionable penalty wiping out a touchdown or the defense giving up a big gain in a long-yardage situation, Tremper just couldn't string successful plays together.

"It was basically the opposite of last week (a 27-14 win at Racine Case)," Tremper coach Jared McGranahan said. "As soon as we did something well last week, we were able to build on it. This week, as soon as we did something well, we either got a poor call or we found a way to make a mistake.

"It was kind of tough sledding, but that's football sometimes."

The loss leaves Tremper's postseason hopes — the team hasn't made the playoffs since 2010 — in peril, as the Trojans fell to 1-2 in the SEC (2-3 overall) with games against Indian Trail (2-1 SEC) and Franklin (3-0 SEC) the next two weeks.

For Park, meanwhile, the win was serious affirmation that the program is rising from the cellar under second-year coach Danny Hernandez, a former St. Joseph standout who played at Carthage.

The Panthers (2-3 overall, 1-2 SEC) went 3-46 in conference play over the last seven seasons but had close calls each of the last three weeks. Those included an 18-14 loss to Indian Trail after a late Hawks' comeback in Week 3 and a 35-18 loss to Franklin in Week 4 after the Panthers trailed just 21-18 through three quarters.

They finished the job Friday, to say the least.

"I'm just proud of our kids, man, I really am," Hernandez said. "It's been a really tough three weeks. We know we have a good football team, and just to go through that with those guys — come close three times and then to finally break through tonight — obviously, I'm super excited for this group.

"I think they know they can win football games. I think they know they're a force, and to finally kind of do it in convincing fashion was great for us."

Park senior dual-threat quarterback Ricky Canady threw for 203 yards and two touchdowns and ran for 57 yards and two more scores.

His 6-yard touchdown run, a 46-yard touchdown pass to senior Terry Gamble — a flag was thrown on the play that would've brought it back, but the officials waved it off after a long conference — and a 30-yard strike to sophomore running back Shawn White out of the backfield gave the Panthers a 20-0 lead with 2 minutes, 36 seconds left in the first half.

Tremper sputtered on offense, punting on its first six possessions.

But the Trojans got life on a third-and-24 play late in the half when junior quarterback Ryan McGonegle found wide-open senior Justin Dierckens streaking down the left sideline for a 42-yard connection that cut Park's halftime lead to 20-7.

After a scoreless third quarter, the Trojans appeared to get within a score on their opening drive of the fourth when McGonegle dropped a perfect ball to junior speedster Tyler Santi for what would've been a 48-yard touchdown.

But the officials called an illegal procedure penalty on Tremper — McGranahan disagreed with the call, to say the least — and the touchdown came off the board.

The Panthers salted it away when Canady — after hitting junior Trey Kelley (five catches, 86 yards) for a 20-yard gain on fourth-and-18 from the Trojans' 22-yard line — scored untouched from a yard out for a 26-7 lead with 4:20 remaining.

OAK CREEK 28, BRADFORD 7

The host Red Devils held a 7-6 halftime lead, but the Knights stormed back in the third and fourth quarters to pick up the SEC victory at Bradford Stadium.

Oak Creek (3-2 overall, 2-1 SEC) iced the win midway through the fourth quarter with an 11-play, 90-yard scoring drive that ended on a 6-yard touchdown run by quarterback Ryan Hock.

The Knights added a late touchdown by Lucas Gallett to close out the scoring.

Bradford (1-4, 1-2) struck first on a 1-yard touchdown run by sophomore quarterback Nate Olson. The Red Devils' lone scoring drive of the game was set up by a fumble recovery by senior linebacker Ricky Calero.

Oak Creek kicker Dragan Kesich, who reportedly has a preferred walk-on offer to the University of Wisconsin, nailed field goals of 45 and 26 yards to pull the Knights within a point at halftime.

Hock connected on a 70-yard touchdown pass to Nathan Gladney late in the third quarter to give Oak Creek a lead it would never relinquish.

"We don't execute (offensively)," Bradford coach Troy Bowe said. "We have two or three kids on every play that do the wrong thing. That's on us as coaches. We have to do a better job coaching them so there's no question that they do the right thing."

OAK CREEK 28, BRADFORD 7

The host Red Devils held a 7-6 halftime lead, but the Knights stormed back in the third and fourth quarters to pick up the SEC victory at Bradford Stadium.

Oak Creek (3-2 overall, 2-1 SEC) iced the win midway through the fourth quarter with an 11-play, 90-yard scoring drive that ended on a 6-yard touchdown run by quarterback Ryan Hock.

The Knights added a late touchdown by Lucas Gallett to close out the scoring.

Bradford (1-4, 1-2) struck first on a 1-yard touchdown run by sophomore quarterback Nate Olson. The Red Devils' lone scoring drive of the game was set up by a fumble recovery by senior linebacker Ricky Calero.

Oak Creek kicker Dragan Kesich, who reportedly has a preferred walk-on offer to the University of Wisconsin, nailed field goals of 45 and 26 yards to pull the Knights within a point at halftime.

Hock connected on a 70-yard touchdown pass to Nathan Gladney late in the third quarter to give Oak Creek a lead it would never relinquish.

"We don't execute (offensively)," Bradford coach Troy Bowe said. "We have two or three kids on every play that do the wrong thing. That's on us as coaches. We have to do a better job coaching them so there's no question that they do the right thing."

FRANKLIN 23, INDIAN TRAIL 0

The visiting Hawks did all they could on defense, holding the perennial power Sabers to 267 total yards in an SEC game between teams tied for first place.

But Franklin — ranked No. 7 in Division-1 in the latest WisSports.net state coaches poll — always has a stout defense, too, and it certainly was Friday.

The Sabers (4-1 overall, 3-0 SEC) took over sole possession of first place in the conference by blanking Indian Trail (3-2, 2-1), as the Hawks mustered just 96 total yards, 125 through the air and a staggering minus-29 on the ground.

The Hawks trailed only 7-0 at halftime, but two touchdowns by Franklin quarterback Myles Burkett — one passing and one rushing — and a safety on an Indian Trail punt in the second half proved too much to overcome.

Indian Trail junior quarterback Argjent Ismaili was 16-of-25 passing for 125 yards with no interceptions.

Franklin now has 27 consecutive wins over Kenosha County teams.

WILMOT 35, ELKHORN 6

The aerial circus came to Frank Bucci Field on Friday night.

Mason Buelow, a 5-foot-9, 171-pound sophomore quarterback who entered the game having thrown for a Southern Lakes Conference-best 977 yards, arrived with much fanfare, along with the rest of the Elkhorn's team.

But after an early foray resulted in a 6-0 lead for the visitors, Wilmot answered in quick-strike fashion and was subsequently catapulted to an important SLC victory by a stout, assignment-sure defense and the fantastic footwork and steady arm of its own signal-caller, senior Zack Watson.

Buelow finished the night 17-of-34 for 142 yards and with one touchdown and one interception, but that was after he went 6-of-7 for 65 yards and a touchdown on the game-opening drive, the punctuation mark coming on a 21-yard strike to wideout Jacob Mogensen from 21 yards away.

“I think our defensive staff did a great job after that first drive of talking to our kids, calming ‘em down and figuring out what we had to do to slow them down a little bit and stop them from throwing the ball on us all day,” said Wilmot coach Keiya Square, whose squad improved to 4-1 overall and 2-1 in the SLC after a lopsided loss at Waterford last week.

“I think we did a great job of making the adjustments.”

In the meantime, Wilmot answered the Elks’ score with one of its own on a 5-yard touchdown pass from Watson to junior tight end Korik Klein just five plays later on a well-conceived bootleg pass and further kept its guests (2-3, 1-2) at bay by demonstrating tremendous run-pass balance. The trigger to that, as usual, was its rock-solid signal-caller.

Equally deft through the air and on the ground, Watson helped extend Wilmot’s winning streak over the Elks to nine games by rushing 21 times for 105 yards (including sacks) and a touchdown and completing 7-of-12 passes for 113 yards and two more scores.

The one that put the game out of reach was a thing of beauty, a perfectly placed aerial to the right corner of the end zone to standout two-way senior Joseph Tanski from 22 yards away that gave Wilmot a 21-6 advantage with 8:20 remaining in the opening half.

WATERFORD 56, CENTRAL 0

The host Wolverines led 42-0 at halftime in cruising to the SLC victory.

Waterford, tied with Hartford at No. 10 in Division-2 in the latest WisSports.net state coaches poll, improved to 5-0 overall and 3-0 in the SLC.

Central dropped to 1-4 and 1-2.

Senior quarterback Gavin Carlson's 14-yard pass to sophomore Zach Kazumura with 11:27 left in the game accounted for the Falcons' lone touchdown.

Carlson finished with 53 passing yards.

Waterford's punishing ground attack churned out 340 yards on 30 attempts for 11.3 yards per carry. Senior Tanner Keller rushed for 143 yards and three touchdowns on just seven attempts.

GREENDALE MARTIN LUTHER 47, SHORELAND LUTHERAN 0

The visiting Pacers were blanked by the Spartans — ranked No. 5 in Division-4 in the latest WisSports.net state coaches poll — in a Metro Classic Conference game.

Martin Luther, which led 40-0 at halftime, got a superb performance from junior quarterback Brady Hoppert, who finished 14-of-16 for 162 yards with two touchdowns and no interceptions.

Junior Taylor Johnson led Shoreland with 72 rushing yards on six carries.

Martin Luther improved to 4-1 overall and 2-1 in the Metro Classic, while Shoreland dropped to 1-4 and 0-3.

For more on Friday night's games, pick up Sunday's edition of the News.

There are two more games on tap today involving county teams to conclude Week 5, as St. Joseph hosts Racine Lutheran in a Metro Classic game at Ameche Field at 1 p.m., while Christian Life plays HOPE Christian at Raabe Stadium in Wauwatosa in a Midwest Classic Conference game at 1 p.m.

Mike Johnson, Dan Truttschel and News correspondent Paul Spicuzza contributed to this report.

0
0
0
0
0

Tags