NOTE: Part of this story was inadvertently cut off after the jump in the print edition of this week's Journal. Below is the compete story. The Journal regrets the error.
MIFFLIN — Platteville’s wild 36–28 triple overtime victory at Iowa–Grant Friday night — the team’s first of the season — came at a steep price.
Platteville entered the game — which wasn’t even scheduled until late Thursday afternoon — without junior standouts Jesse Martin (who tore the ACL in his right knee in the previous week’s loss at Mineral Point) and Devin Digman (COVID contract tracing).
The Hillmen then lost senior Seth Millsap and junior Chase Carroll to season-ending injuries in the third quarter.
Millsap broke his collarbone making a spectacular diving catch late in the first quarter.
Carroll was lost to a scary neck injury with 4:25 left in the third quarter. Carroll collapsed after making a tackle on Iowa–Grant senior Zach Winkler on a 1st-and-goal play at the 1-yard-line. He remained motionless for nearly a minute before paramedics strapped him to a stretcher and used the ambulance to take him to the hospital.
Carroll has a fracture in his neck and is currently at home. He had a doctor’s appointment with in Madison with a specialist on Tuesday.
Both Carroll and Millsap are done for the remainder of the year, as well as Martin. Devin Digman will return to the lineup this Friday.
Carroll’s injury delayed the game for more than 30 minutes as the team’s had to wait for a third ambulance — Millsap was also taken to the hospital in an ambulance — before play could resume.
“The kids were worried about Chase, but once the whistle blew they were back to playing football,” said Platteville head coach Jason Weittenhiller. “After the game everyone was texting and checking in on him.”
Iowa–Grant also lost senior quarterback Isaac Hill early in the first half to an ankle injury.
The very next play after Carroll’s injury junior Reid Lundell — who was filling in a quarterback for the Panthers — scored on a 1-yard run. He added the two-point conversion run to give IG a 20–14 lead.
Iowa–Grant (0–3) recovered an onside kick, but Platteville senior Connor Timlin forced and recovered a fumble at the Platteville 9-yard line.
Four plays later, the Panthers recorded a safety and increased their lead to 22–14 when Platteville punter Kaydan Addie’s knee touched down while fielding a low snap in the end zone with 16 seconds left in the third quarter.
Sophomore quarterback Derek Digman scored on a 24-yard run with 4:08 left, but his conversion pass to Logan Page fell incomplete and IG held a 22–20 lead with 4:08 to play.
Weittenhiller elected to kick it deep and play for field position and the decision immediately paid off.
Four plays later, a poor snap sailed way over the head of Iowa–Grant punter Skyler Achenbach and Platteville senior John Drefcinski tackled Achenbach in the end zone for the ultra-rare game-tying safety, 22–22 with 3:03 left in the game.
Platteville turned the ball over on downs near midfield with 43 seconds left and Timlin sacked Lundell on the final play of regulation to send the game to overtime.
Lundell ended Platteville’s first overtime possession with an interception on 4th-and-13 from the IG 28.
Junior Terrell Halverson ended the Panthers’ first overtime possession with an interception also on fourth down.
IG had the ball to begin the second overtime and scored on its fourth play, a 6-yard TD run by Winkler. But Winkler’s extra point was wide and the Panthers led 28–22.
Platteville open its double overtime possession with a 13-yard Digman to Halverson pass. On the very next play Digman connected with senior Logan Page to tie the game.
Addie, a two-sport athlete this fall who became the Platteville/Lancaster boys’ soccer program’s all-time leading goal scorer with six goals in Saturday’s 8–0 victory at Richland Center, came on with a chance to win the game with an extra point.
But IG’s Treyton Starkey and Alex Sedbrook broke through the middle of the line and blocked the attempt to send the game to a third overtime period.
After senior John Goomey picked up a first down with a 6-yard run, Goomey broke loose for a 15-yard TD run. Halverson caught a pivotal two-point conversion to make it 36–28.
An unsportsmanlike conduct penalty on IG’s first down play, buried the Panthers, then on 3rd-and-24, Drefcinski sacked Lundell near midfield and forced a fumble that was recovered by Timlin to end the game.
“After Chase got hurt, our play sheet was cut in half,” said Weittenhiller. “There were many formations and plays that we couldn’t run anymore. Even with four wide receivers down, the guys who came in really stepped up. Logan Page caught his first touchdown of his career. Terrell Halverson converted a huge two-point conversion in the third overtime.”
Digman finished with a game-high 129 yards rushing on 12 carries. He also completed 11 of 19 passes for 149 yards. Goomey finished with 105 yards rushing on 22 carries, including a pair of first-half touchdowns on runs of 6 yards in the first quarter and 6 yards in the second.
Lundell completed 9 of 17 passes for 163 yards and two first-half TD passes for senior Lucas Oyen after replacing Hill. Oyen caught fourh passes for 105 yards and scored on a 55-yard bomb with 4:18 left in the first, and a 10-yard pass with 32 seconds left in the half.
“We implemented a new offense this week that we believed gave us the best chance at moving the ball and scoring,” said Raimer. “This offense fits our personnel better, and with a few position changes and the players executing the offense, it clearly worked for us Friday night.”
“We found out that we were going to be playing Platteville on Thursday at about 2:30 p.m.,” added Raimer. “It was a bit of a challenge to try to prepare just the night before, but yet again it just allowed us and our players to go out and just play football without thinking too much. It was kind of a nice change of pace.”
Platteville was left without a Week 4 game after its Week 3 game with Richland Center was cancelled due to COVID and the regularly scheduled Week 4 Mineral Point game was moved up a week. Iowa–Grant was left without a Week 4 game when Onalaska Luther had to cancel midweek due to COVID.
Platteville improved to 1–3 on the season while Iowa–Grant fell to 0–3.
“Friday night was definitely bittersweet,” said Weittenhiller. “It was a lot of fun being part of an exciting back and forth game. I saw a lot of players who haven’t played much varsity football step up big. It was also sad seeing two seasons come to an end. Chase and Seth have both put in a lot of work this offseason. It’s tough to see seasons end with injuries.”
“It is a great confidence boost for our players,” said Raimer of the triple overtime loss.
“They were able to finally see all their hard work and dedication pay off with a great performance this week. While we may have not won on the scoreboard, this game was a victory for us and a great boost to help us finish out the season.”
Iowa–Grant is scheduled to travel to Potosi/Cassville Friday night at 7 p.m.
Platteville is set to host River Valley Saturday at 1 p.m.
Platteville 36, Iowa–Grant 28 (3 OT)
(from Friday, Oct. 15 @ Iowa–Grant)
Platteville.....7 7 0 8 14 — 36
Iowa–Grant..0 12 10 0 6 — 28
P: John Goomey 6 run (Kaydan Addie kick) 6:59
IG: Lucas Oyen 55 pass from Reid Lundell (pass failed) 4:18
P: Goomey 6 run (Addie kick), 1:33
IG: Oyen 10 pass from Lundell (pass failed) 0:32
IG: Lundell 4 run (Lundell run) 4:20
IG: Team safety, Addie knee touched the ground on a low snap, 0:16
P: Derek Digman 24 run (pass failed) 4:08
P: Team safety, Skyler Achenbach tackled in the end zone, 3:03
IG: Zach Winkler 7 run (kick failed)
P: Logan Page 10 pass from Digman (kick blocked)
P: Goomey 9 run (Halverson run)
First downs — P 19, IG 20. Rushing — P 35-233, IG 46-135. Passing (comp-att-int, yds) — P 11-19-1, 149; IG 9-18-1, 175. Fumbles–lost — P 0-0, IG 2-2. Penalties-yards — P 9-75, IG 6-40.
Rushing — P: Derek Digman 12-129, John Goomey 22-105; IG: Zach Winkler 19-74, Treyton Starkey 11-62. Passing — P: Derek Digman 11-19-0, 149; IG: Reid Lundell 9-17-1, 163. Receiving — P: Logan Page 4-61, Goomey 3-38; IG: Lucas Oyen 4-105, Colin Merwin 3-50. Tackles — P: Goomey 17, Jayden Culbertson 10, Adam Bird 8, Derek Digman 7, Terrell Halverson 7, Porter Mandurano 7.