Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Freeman Football Coverage

from today's Waukesha Freeman --

Second straight trip this deep for Memorial
By Todd Hansen Freeman Correspondent

WAUWATOSA – It wasn’t the start the Catholic Memorial High School football team wanted. However, the ending suited the Crusaders just fine.

Trailing by two touchdowns after the first quarter, Memorial rallied for 21 second-half points to defeat Wisconsin Lutheran 24-17 in a WIAA Division 3 quarterfinal game at Wisconsin Lutheran College on Saturday. Memorial (10-2) advances to the state semifinals for the second consecutive year and will face Delavan-Darien (11-1) Saturday afternoon at Kettle Moraine for the right to advance to Camp Randall.

Wisconsin Lutheran’s season ended at 9-3. The Vikings had defeated the Crusaders 28-10 in a sec- ond-round playoff game two years ago. “Not the start we were looking for, no, but it was the finish,” Memorial coach Bill Young said. “I’m so proud of everyone. It doesn’t get much better than this.”

The Vikings led 14-10 entering the fourth quarter before Memorial took a 17-14 lead after a 4-yard TD run by junior running back Charlie Walsh with 10:14 left. The touchdown was set up four plays earlier when senior running back Peter Karczewski went 64 yards to the Lutheran 14-yard line. Lutheran took more than four minutes off the clock and eventually tied the game on a 24-yard field goal by sophomore kicker Jansen VanGrinsven with 4:41 left.

On the first play following the kickoff, on a simple trap play, Karczewski scored on a 74-yard touchdown run to give the Crusaders a 24-17 lead. Before his 64-yard run earlier in the quarter, Karczewski’s longest run of the season had been 50 yards. “The hole was huge and it was the first play after they had tied it and we knew we had to drive it down and waste some time, but I saw the hole and just busted through it,” Karczewski said. “It was just an up-thegut trap. “I just saw the free safety jump over to the other side and I cut it out and then prayed they wouldn’t catch me from behind. I just ran as fast as I could. It was insane.” Karczewski finished with a game-high 207 yards on 22 attempts and has rushed for 1,648 yards this season.
“Peter Karczewski has been the pivotal wheel on our offense all year long,” Young said. “Our offensive line did a great job opening up holes. “It was a trap play. (Guard Matt) Baldwin is a great blocker for us and Karczewski goes the distance. What more can you say? It was phenomenal. We were just looking to drive down for a field goal to win the game and then off a sudden Peter cracks one.”

Looking for the tying touchdown, Lutheran moved to its 48-yard line before facing a fourth-and-two. Junior quarterback Nolan McShane was tackled inches short of a first down by senior linebacker Matt Groehler and the Vikings turned the ball over on downs with 1:46 remaining.

Memorial sealed the victory when senior running back Broc Kocour got a first down on an 8-yard run on third down and the Crusaders only had to take on a knee on the final two plays. “First time we’ve come back from that much down,” Karczewski said. “We just came together as a team and pushed forward.”

After a Memorial drive stalled inside the Lutheran 40-yard line to open the game, the Vikings took a 7-0 lead with 6:28 left in the first quarter on a 75-yard touchdown run by senior running back James Harris, who finished with a team-high 131 yards on 20 carries. Following a Memorial punt, the Vikings extended their lead to 14-0 after a nine-play, 38-yard drive ended with a 1-yard TD plunge by senior running back Tim Bauman with less than minute left in the first quarter.

Memorial was within 14-3 at halftime after a 33-yard field goal by senior kicker Chris Colombe midway through the second quarter. A 1-yard TD run by Walsh cut the Vikings’ lead to 14-10 entering the fourth quarter. “We made some good adjustments,” Young said. “The first series we should have had a three-and-out. Then they get another one on a short field but as cliché and corny as this sounds, it’s a four-quarter game. We can’t be more proud of our kids for the way they battled.

“We kept on battling out there and it was a phenomenal effort and it showed a lot of character by our kids.”

No comments: