SENECA-WAUZEKA-STEUBEN - It was a tough early-season game against a prepared opponent and there was no breaks to be had for the Seneca-Wauzeka-Steuben football team last Friday night.
The Blue-Golds hosted the Tigers from Lake City, Minnesota and in the process got mauled pretty badly–losing 36-6.
This was the second bad loss in as many weeks for SWS. The Blue-Golds were routed at River Ridge by Timberwolves 41-3 on Friday, Aug. 30.
SWS started the season well, defeating Highland in the opener 30-12. The Blue-Golds are 1-2 overall.
Lake City looked good early, but didn’t score until the final two minutes of the first quarter. Then, they scored twice to take a 14-0 lead.
The Tigers dominated the second quarter scoring three touchdowns for 22 points. They ran one extra-point conversion in for two points from the kicking formation, when the holder picked up the ball and went around the SWS end.
Despite all of this, the Blue-Golds threatened twice in the first half. In the second quarter, SWS defensive back Gavin Ralph intercepted the ball and ran it back into Lake City territory. Unfortunately, the Tigers immediately responded with an interception of their own and that killed that opportunity for SWS.
Toward the end of the second quarter, the Blue-Golds used a little razzle-dazzle on a kickoff return when junior Ethan Karnopp recevied the ball and handed off to senior Hunter Aspenson, who made a nice return our of it–getting deep into Lake City territory.
On what would be the final play of the first half SWS quarterback Carter Lomas found Gavin Ralph on a crossing route in front of the end zone and threw just a trifle behind him. That was just enough to let the Tigers’ defensive back Mason West breakup the pass, although Ralph made a gallant attempt to come down with the ball. West clearly was holding onto Ralph’s left arm as the ball arrived, but the officials failed to call pass interference.
Unfortunately, when the shoe was on the other foot, SWS got no breaks and were penalized at least twice for pass interference or defensive holding in the first half.
The only SWS score came in the third quarter on a 35-yard run by Hunter Aspenson. The two-point conversion failed. Lake City did not score in the second half.
For the game, the Tigers recorded 22 first downs to just five for the Blue-Golds.
Lake City rushed for 253 yards on 41 attempts, while SWS ran for 95 yards on 26 attempts.
The Tigers passed for 173 yards connecting on nine of 22 passing and giving up just one interception. By contrast, the Blue-Golds gained just 10 yards on 2-13 passing with two interceptions. Both teams turned the ball over once on a fumble.
SWS was penalized 55 yards on five penalties, while Lake City was penalized 35 yards on five penalties.
Unfortunately for SWS, the Lake City Tigers were not the right choice for a team like the Blue-Golds, who are trying to gel on the field after losing 14 players to graduation last year.So, that sets up the big ‘Friday the 13th’ matchup at North Crawford this week. The Trojans are reeling from two successive losses to Highland (49-6) and last week to New Lisbon (45-0). Let’s see what happens, when the old rivals meet again this Friday.