|11/13/2017 10:17:00 AM|
Pointers bow out to Hornets at Level 3
Famed Ohio State coach Woody Hayes once said "The five big mistakes in football are the fumble, the interception, the penalty, the badly called play, and the blocked punt ."
Mineral Point's football team avoided the badly called play and the blocked punt and for the most part the penalties when they played #1 seed Markesan Friday. But the fumble and the interception haunted them all four quarters.
The fumbles--three of them--and an interception gave the Hornets great field position all night but more than that it forced the Pointers to travel uphill and play catch-up most of the game.
Markesan scored 24 first quarter points and went on to eliminate the Pointers at Level 3 of the WIAA play-offs 47-26.
"Those turnovers really hurt," Pointer coach Andy Palzkill said. "We dug ourselves a big hole and we nearly crawled out of it late in the second quarter."
The Pointers regrouped with a pair of touchdowns in the second quarter to cut the Markesan lead in half but the Hornets struck again before halftime and lead 32-12 at intermission. The Hornets went on to outscore the Pointers 15-14 the second half and finish the game with continuous clock.
"In the end, you can't make mistakes like we did and expect to win," said Palzkill. "Good teams will take advantage of those opportunities and Markesan is certainly a good team. I tip my hat to them and give them credit for beating us."
Markesan took a 12-0 lead in a rather unconventional manner.
At the 10 minute mark Carson Clark ran a quarterback sneak for a one yard score and Bryce Plagenz kicked the conversion.
The next Hornet drive stalled, forcing them to go for the field goal which Plagenz converted from the 20.
At 6:30 defensive lineman Bryce Friday was credited with a safety to make it 12-0.
Peter Paddock closed out the quarter with a pair of short runs, one from the one and one from the three for a 24-0 first quarter.
The Pointers regrouped with a seven yard run by sophomore quarterback Isaac Lindsey at 8:55 and a Lindsey to Mason Dailey four yard pass at 4:08 to slice the lead to two scores.
But, the Hornets went to the air with Drew Bernhagen catching a four yard strike from Clark. Add a two point Clark to Zac Triggs pass for the conversion and the score was 32-12 at halftime.
The Pointers held off the Hornets for 10 minutes before Clark scored from the four and Plagenz kicked the extra point to up the lead to 39-12.
Markesan forced the continuous clock at 9:47 of the fourth when Clark spotted Triggs in the clear and lofted a pass that resulted in a 42 yard score. He added two more points on a pass to Bernhagen.
The Pointers battled, though, and put up two more scores before time expired. Lindsey hit freshman Liam Stumpf with a pass he carried 59 yards to score and Curtis Cox kicked the extra point. Riley Workman completed his senior season with a 35 yard scamper and Cox again converted to make the final 47-26.
Lindsey ran the ball 20 times for 107 yards to lead the Pointer rushing
Lindsey threw 29 passes, completed 10, twice for scores, one to Dailey and one to Stumpf.
It was Clark who stole the show with 308 yards passing on 13 of 23 completions. He also scored twice on runs, totalling 42 yards on 11 tries.
Clark's proficient work as the signal caller was not a surprise for the Pointers.
"They did have over 1800 yards of passing coming into our game so we were aware of their passing attack," said Palzkill. "Their quarterback did a great job of finding the holes in our cover two scheme. It was a great example of what a four year starter at quarterback means to a football team. The game was certainly moving in slow motion for him and he was able find our weak areas. They are also a few talented receivers who made some big plays in jump ball situations."
"I would definitely rate him as the best quarterback we faced," Palzkill added. "He was in command of the game all night."
"We were not surprised by anything they did offensively," Palzkill added. "Markesan actually does very similar things to what we do on offense. I felt like Markesan did a great job of making plays when they had the opportunity."
"We had many missed opportunities in all three phases," the coach added. "Markesan is a great team that made the plays to earn the victory. I wish Coach Winkers and his team the best as they prepare for Level 4 this week."
The game spelled the end of high school football for a talented group of seniors.
"We have a wonderful senior class and I am very proud to have had the opportunity to coach this group of young men," said Palzkill. "Thank you to Josh Shepler, Eric Heisner, Joey Dolphin, Riley Workman, Brady Roberts, Grant Sporle, Jacob Moellers, Austin Heisner, Caden Jackson, Baily Lawinger, and Carver Wallace. These kids have made a huge impact on Mineral Point Football and their efforts are very much appreciated. It will take quite some time for the sadness to dissipate.......I know how much these seniors put into our football program and they will be dearly missed. We are very proud of our accomplishment, but we all wish it would not have come to an end."
Palzkill wrapped up the season and gave a glimpse of what to expect next year.
"Looking over the final statistics, we nearly accomplished a goal I have as an offensive coordinator," he said. "We strive to be balanced and I wanted to have over 2000 yards of passing and over 2000 yards of rushing. We ended to season with 2124 yards passing and 1998 yards rushing. Isaac passed for 1996 yards with 22 TD's and only 4 interceptions. Isaac also rushed for 635 yards and 12 rushing TD's. Those are amazing numbers. Riley rushed for 1283 yards and also had 308 yards receiving. We had four receivers over 300 yards! I am not a huge stat guy, but it was a very good year of offense."
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