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Beavers Sports

Beavers Lose A Double-Overtime Heartbreaker to Baraboo

Posted Wednesday, September 14, 2011 by Brady Ambrose

FOOTBALL: Beavers lose a double-overtime heartbreaker to Baraboo


buy this photo Members of the Reedsburg offense listen to coach Brian Pottinger late in the game Friday night.

There were positive developments, to be sure, and plenty of them.

But the result was a difficult one to take for the Reedsburg Area High School football team Friday night.

Baraboo needed a defensive stop and one last touchdown to win a wild, double-overtime thriller at Millennium Field, taking a 40-34 victory over Reedsburg in a Badger North Conference rivalry battle.

The victory marked the Thunderbirds' first victory over Reedsburg since 2006 and returns the Old River Jug to Baraboo.

The 123rd meeting between the teams turned into an instant classic as the teams battled to a 28-28 tie at the end of regulation and a 34-34 tie after the first overtime.

But Baraboo's Brandon Ennis, who rushed for 146 yards and three touchdowns on just nine carries in his first varsity game, tallied what turned out to be the game-winning score when Baraboo's defense stopped Reedsburg on its possession in the second overtime.

The Thunderbirds' 6-foot-5 senior quarterback, Sean McGann, threw for two touchdowns and rushed for another.

"I said last week that Baraboo was an improved team over the past couple of years and it wasn't just ‘coach talk,'" said Reedsburg coach Brian Pottinger.

The Beavers fell to 0-2 in the Badger North and 1-3 overall.

Now, Reedsburg heads into its most difficult stretch of the season, starting with a 7 p.m. Friday home game against defending WIAA Division 2 state champion Waunakee.

Thunderbirds are on the rise, improving to 2-0 in the conference and 2-2 overall - not bad for a team that hadn't won a league game since 2008 before starting its current streak.

There were several positives for the Reedsburg side despite the final score, including the play of running back Dillon Klahn, who came in for the injured Weston Ernstmeyer, and the way the Beavers were able to trade punches with the Thunderbirds until the second overtime.

"The effort was certainly there and offensively, the team graded out very well overall," Pottinger said. "We had some great drives during the game, especially the one with 2 minutes left in regulation. Unfortunately, our execution got sloppy in the second overtime and it cost us."

But that wasn't enough to quell the pain his team felt afterward.

"There were a lot of disappointed players, as you would expect," Pottinger said. "We're at a point now where we can't keep looking for the silver lining in every game.

"The bottom line is, we aren't doing the necessary things to win games. Playing Waunakee should get your juices flowing, if you're any kind of competitor at all. It's these kinds of challenges that will really show the character of our players and our team."

Ennis scored on the second play of the game, taking a pitch from McGann and racing 76 yards down the right sideline. The run gave Baraboo a 6-0 lead 48 seconds into the game. In what would become a familiar scenario, the Thunderbirds missed a two-point conversion - the first of half a dozen missed PATs by the two teams.

The Beavers tied the game on their first possession, driving 60 yards in 13 plays. Austin Westerwelle ran it in from 9 yards out with 5:35 left in the first quarter.

On the Beavers' next possession, fullback Weston Ernstmeyer and the offensive line flexed their muscles. Ernstmeyer carried for 36 yards on first down, then rumbled 22 yards on his next carry to take Reedsburg to the Baraboo 33. But the drive stopped when Ennis intercepted a Luke Bjorklund pass, returning it to the Baraboo 49 as the first quarter expired.

After the teams traded possessions, the Beavers held Baraboo on a fourth-and-two play at the Reedsburg 38 when Nick Christensen tackled Adair Ebright for no gain. Reedsburg then drove to a go-ahead score when, on a fourth-and-nine play from the Baraboo 14, Bjorklund hit Ben Turner with a 14-yard touchdown pass over the middle with 21 seconds left in the half. Westerwelle converted a two-point conversion, giving Reedsburg took a 14-6 lead at the half.

After the two teams traded possession to start the third, Reedsburg's Tyler Arneson booted a 47-yard punt that pinned Baraboo at its 38. On third and nine, though, McGann hit William Hintz with a 39-yard pass to the Reedsburg 22. A McGann run to the 16 made it fourth and five, and Baraboo opted to go for it. McGann delivered a big play, scrambling away from several defenders to find Ennis wide open in the back of the end zone for a score that tied the game, 14-14, with 1:12 left in the quarter.

The Beavers took the kickoff and began to march. Ernstmeyer picked up 12 yards to the Baraboo 48 on the first play of the fourth quarter, and two plays later, Westerwelle picked up 18 yards to the Baraboo 29. On first and 10, Bjorklund broke loose for a 29-yard scoring run to give Reedsburg a 21-14 lead with 10 minutes to play.

But Baraboo wasted no time moving down the field. Ennis took a first-down pitch from McGann and broke for a 42-yard run to the Reedsburg 20. McGann then hit Hintz for 12 yards and Michael Bostwick for an 8-yard touchdown. McGann then ran in the two-point conversion to give Baraboo a 22-21 lead with 8:19 left.

The Beavers then answered with an impressive drive. Starting at its 29, Reedsburg marched to the 40, but was pushed back to the 38 on its next play. Bjorklund then broke for a 21-yard gain to the Reedsburg 41, and a 15-yard face mask penalty moved the ball to the Thunderbirds' 26.

The Beavers got a boost from a youngster when Klahn entered for Ernstmeyer, who appeared to have rolled his ankle. Klahn, who started the season on the junior varsity, picked up four yards to the 22 and Westerwelle gained six more to the 16. Bjorklund broke for 11 yards to the Baraboo 5, and four plays later, Klahn scored his first varsity touchdown to put the Beavers on top, 28-22, with 2:03 to play.

Needing to score to keep their chances alive, Baraboo started at its own 33 and gained 18 yards in two plays to enter Reedsburg territory. McGann then hit Ennis with a completion to the Beavers 38 with 1:12 left. Two plays later, McGann hit Bostwick with a strike at the 21.

McGann ran for 11 yards to the Reedsburg 9 with 22 seconds to play, then teamed up with

Marty Hickey to give the Thunderbirds a first down inside the 1 with 13 seconds left. and goal inside the one yard line with 13 seconds to play, and McGann took it in for a 28-28 tie with 10 seconds left.

But Hintz missed the extra-point kick wide, keeping the score tied.

Baraboo recovered an onside kick, but McGann threw two incomplete passes and overtime had arrived.

Baraboo won the toss and put Reedsburg on offense first. Starting at the Baraboo 25, the Beavers got a go-ahead touchdown on a 4-yard run by Klahn. But Westerwelle was stopped short on a two-point conversion try, keeping the Reedsburg lead at 34-28.

Baraboo tied the score two plays later when McGann hit Hickey in the left corner of the end zone. That's when Reedsburg's Aaron Lopp kept the Beavers alive, blocking Hintz's extra-point try to keep the score tied at 34-34.

Baraboo got the ball at the 25 to start the second overtime. Ennis picked up a first down with a 15-yard run, then scored on a 1-yard run three plays later. This time, Matt Archambo and Nick Christensen of Reedsburg ruined Baraboo's conversion try, tackling Ennis short to keep the score at 40-34.

But it wasn't meant to be for Reedsburg. Bjorklund threw an incomplete pass on first down, and then was tackled by sophomore Taylor Henke for no gain. On third and 10, the Beavers were called for a false start, losing five years. Klahn ran for five on third down, but on fourth and 10, Bjorklund's pass to Westerwelle at the Baraboo 10 was knocked away.

Reedsburg rolled up 351 yards of offense, with Bjorklund rushing for 110 yards and a touchdown and Ernstmeyer adding 112 yards before leaving the game. Ben Turner had two receptions and a touchdown as the Beavers passed for 51 yards.

On defense, Reedsburg was led by Caleb Senzig's nine assisted tackles. Christensen, Colton Brott and Lopp each had eight assisted tackles and Matt Olson Seth Douglas, Christensen and Archambo had two solo tackles each.

BARABOO 40, REEDSBURG 34

(TWO OVERTIMES)

Baraboo 6 0 8 14 6 6 6 - 40

Reedsburg 6 8 0 14 6 0 - 34

SCORING

First quarter

B: Brandon Ennis 76 run, PAT run failed, 6-0.

R: Austin Westerwelle 9 run, PAT kick blocked, 6-6.

Second quarter

R: Ben Turner, 14 pass from Luke Bjorklund, Westerwelle PAT run, 14-6.

Third quarter

B: Ennis, 17 pass from Sean McGann, Ennis PAT run, 14-14.

Fourth quarter

R: Bjorklund 29 run, Arneson PAT kick, 21-14, 10:23.

B: Michael Bostwick 7 pass from McGann, McGann PAT run, 22-21.

R: Dylan Klahn 1 run, Tyler Arneson PAT kick, 28-22, 2:03.

B: McGann 1 run, PAT kick failed, 28-28, :10.

First overtime

R: Dillon Klahn 4 run, PAT run fail, 34-28.

B: Marty Hickey 22 pass from McGann, PAT kick wide, 34-34.

Second overtime

B: Ennis 2 run, PAT run failed, 40-34.

First downs: B 9, R 19. Total plays-yards: B 64-258, R 68-351. Passing: B 8-14-0-227, R 3-12-1 51. Rushing: B 40-227, R 56-300. Fumbles: B 0-0, R 3-1. Penalties: B 4-35, R 5-35.

Passers: B - McGann 8-14-0-131, 3 TD; R - Bjorklund 3-12-1-51, 1 TD.

Rushing leaders: B - Ennis 9-146, 3 TD; R - Bjorklund 17-110, 1 TD; Weston Ernstmeyer 14-112.

Receiving leaders: B - Hinze 2-50; R - Turner 2-26, 1 TD.

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