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Beavers Sports

Another One Bites The Dust

Varsity - 2009 Season
Posted Friday, November 13, 2009 by Brady Ambrose


Another one bites the dust

A typical scene from Saturday, where six Reedsburg defenders, including Tyler Keele (56), Jared Park (5), Seth Brandt (62) and Travis Erbs (44) gang tackle Jefferson's Tyler Tomczak late in the game.


Brady Ambrose photo


A typical scene from Saturday, where six Reedsburg defenders, including Tyler Keele (56), Jared Park (5), Seth Brandt (62) and Travis Erbs (44) gang tackle Jefferson's Tyler Tomczak late in the game.


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Brady Ambrose/Times Press


Defense, defense, defense.


Never mind the fact that the high-powered Reedsburg offense rolled up 457 total yards of offense against Jefferson, but it was the Beaver defense that for the third straight playoff game turned in a masterful effort as Reedsburg dominated Jefferson 27-14 to advance to the Div. 3 state semifinal game next Saturday.


Jefferson head coach Steve Gee said after the game that "they are the fastest team we've seen. They are well coached, fast and strong and they beat us to the point of attack on both sides of the ball."  Reedsburg totally shot down Jefferson senior Pete Linse.


Coming into the game, Linse had rushed for over 1,600 yards and 20 touchdowns, including 408 yards and eight touchdowns in the Eagles first two playoff wins. But Saturday the Beavers had other plans. "Our goal coming into the game as a defense was to hold him (Linse) to 75 yards," said Reedsburg defensive lineman Nate Brey. Reedsburg did just that — in impressive fashion — holding Linse to 10 yards on eight carries in the first half.


"He didn't have much," said Gee. "At times on some of our outside runs we had the edge, but I'm really impressed with their backside pursuit." For the game Linse finished with just 40 yards on 15 carries, 108 yards below his season average.


Reedsburg coach Brian Pottinger praised his defense, saying, "They've really been doing this all year long. We figured we could get a good read on them and use that and it worked."


The Beavers struck first, grabbing a 7-0 lead on just their fourth play from scrimmage when quarterback Chad Mazur scored from 48 yards out. The Eagles took the opening kick and Linse picked up nine yards on Jefferson's first play of the game, but after that it was all Reedsburg.


After forcing the first of three first-half punts, the Beavers took over at their own 40. On third-and-four Andy Huber picked up a first down to the Jefferson 48 and Mazur raced untouched down the right side on the next play to set the tone in the game. After trading possessions, Reedsburg put together a long 17-play drive that ate up nearly eight minutes.


Jefferson moved to the Reedsburg 30 after taking over at the 48 yard line with 4:42 left in the first quarter. The Eagles quickly moved the chains with a first down to the 36, but on third and three the Reedsburg defense stuffed Tyler Tomczak for a one yard loss.


On fourth-and-four Gee and the Eagles decided to go for it, but Linse was tackled for no gain and Reedsburg took over on downs at their own 27 with 2:33 left in the quarter. Matt Lennon picked up eight yards on third-and-eight to keep the drive alive, and the first quarter ended with the Beavers on the move with a 7-0 lead.


Facing a third-and-four at their 45, Huber picked up three yards and Chad Mazur picked up the first down on fourth-and-one to the 49. Ryan Matthews tacked on four yards on first down, and on second-and-six Lennon rumbled 19 yards to the Jefferson 28.


Huber picked up 11 yards on the next play and on third-and-eight Lennon came up just short with a seven-yard run to the eight yard line, but Mazur gave the Beavers a first-and-goal one play later. The Eagles were then called for unsportsmanlike conduct giving Reedsburg the ball at the three yard line. Two plays later Matthews scored to put the Beavers up 14-0 with 7:16 left in the first half.


The Beavers looked like they would blow the game open on their next possession, but an uncharacteristic fumble stopped the drive. Starting at their own 15 after another Jefferson punt, Mazur hit Lennon with a short pass on third-and-10 and Matt raced to the Jefferson 25.


But a good hit by Eagle linebacker Lucas Tabor jarred the ball lose and the Eagles recovered at their own 19. Tomczak picked up 12 yards on first down to the 31, but on the next play Jefferson was called for their second unsportsmanlike penalty call of the first half, pushing them back to the 16 yard line.


The Eagles ran three more plays but punted on fourth-and-nine with seven seconds left in the half, and Reedsburg let the ball go, taking a 14-0 lead into halftime.


The Beaver defense had forced Jefferson completely out of the game plan, as the Eagles went three-and-out three times, turned it over on downs once and picked up just two first downs.


The Beavers started the third quarter with another strong drive and looked like they might go up 21-0. After getting backed up to their 15 with a false start penalty, Mazur took off on a bruising 36-yard run to the Jefferson 49. Starting to his left, Mazur ran into a wall of players near the Reedsburg sidelines, but rammed his way through and raced to the 49, and in the process took a lot of fight out of  Jefferson along the way. Nine plays later — on fourth-and-11 at the Jefferson 22 — Mazur hit a wide open Shane Rockweiler over the middle for a 21-yard completion that gave Reedsburg a first-and-goal at the one, but on the next play Lennon fumbled again and Jefferson's Tom Scherer recovered at the two-yard line.


Facing a third-and-10 at the two, Jefferson quarterback Lucas Smillie was almost sacked in the end zone, but got away and picked up a first down to the 20.


On their best drive of the game, the Eagles moved to the Reedsburg 41 yard line, but on first down Smillie threw a floater of a pass into double coverage that was intended for Mike Stellmacher, but instead Reedsburg's Grant Rudolph intercepted the pass at the five yard line, Reedsburg's eighth interception in three playoff games.


Lennon then made up for the two fumbles when on the ensuing drive he picked up 15 yards on second-and-10 to give the Beavers a first down at the 20. Shane Rockweiler added five yards to the 25, and on second-and-five Lennon broke free off right tackle and galloped 75 yards to give the Beavers a 21-0 lead with 1:22 left in the third quarter.   


Jefferson finally got on the board when junior Matt Vogel scored from 12 yards out with 8:12 left in the game, aided by a 27-yard run by Smillie on a fake punt on fourth-and-11 from the Reedsburg 38 yard line, and added another score when Linse finally found the endzone from three yards out with 44 seconds left in the game. After the Beavers went up 27-7, Jefferson started at their own 37. After Linse was tackled for a four yard loss, Jefferson picked up a first down to the 50 and on fourth-and-two at the Reedsburg 37, Smillie hit Linse with a  pass to the Beaver 25. Five plays later Linse scored from three yards out for a 27-14 final.


"We've had to be more flexible with our offense this year because of how teams are defending us," said Pottinger. "Our kids have gotten pretty good at adjusting on the run and have been executing those game time adjustments well."     


As a team Reedsburg finished the game with 404 rushing yards on 47 attempts with junior Matt Lennon rushing for 217 yards on just 13 carries and Mazur adding 102 yards on 15 carries.


"Teams have schemed to stop Matt and our perimeter game and our offensive strengths are different than what they were last year," said the coach. "He's still a very good running back and he showed what he can do on Saturday."


The Jefferson defense had held their opponents to an average of 71 yards rushing per game. At halftime Lennon had rushed for 74 yards, and added 143 in the second half, as Reedsburg amassed 457 total yards of offense, passing for 53 yards in the game as well.


Jefferson's longest play of the game was just 19 yards, and the Eagles had only seven plays of 10 or more yards in the loss. The Eagles were held to 211 rushing yards, led by 62 on six carries by Smillie.






Reedsburg 7 7 7 6—27


Jefferson 0 0 0 14—14


Scoring summary: R—Chad Mazur, 48 run (Michael Hayes kick). R—Ryan Matthews, 1 run (Hayes kick). R—Matt Lennon, 75 run (Hayes kick). J—Matt Vogel, 16 run (Tyler Tomczak kick). R—Lennon, 25 run (kick failed). J—Pete Linse, 2 run (Tomczak kick).


Statistics: First downs—R 18, J 11. Rushing—R 47-404, J 39-211. Yards passing—R 53, J 30. Passes—R 3-4-0, 3-10-1. Fumbles—R 3-2, J 0-0. Penalties—R 4-28, J 2-19.


Individual leaders: Rushing: JE - Smillie 6-62, RE - Lennon 13-207, Mazur 15-102. Passing: JE - Smillie 2-8-24-1. RE - Mazur 3-4-53. Receiving: JE - Linse 2-18. RE - Rockweiler 1-23. 

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