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Beavers Sports

Reedsburg Overpowered by Norskies

Posted Wednesday, September 28, 2011 by Brady Ambrose

FOOTBALL: Reedsburg overpowered by Norskies

buy this photo Ben Turner holds on to the ball after an eight yard reception Friday night at DeForest.

  • Ben Turner
  • No where to go
  • Gang tackle

DEFOREST - It would be hard to find another high school football team that had a tougher schedule the last two weeks than Reedsburg.

And after a 41-7 loss at DeForest on Friday night, the Beavers (1-5 overall, 0-4 Badger North Conference) are relieved to be done with their two-week gauntlet.

A week after losing, 56-0, to the No. 1 team in the state Division 2 rankings, Waunakee, the Beavers struggled on offense against DeForest.

The Norskies feature the state's leading rusher, Bryan Harper, who entered the game with a state-best 1,302 yards on 134 carries (an average of 260.4 yards per game) and a state-leading 18 touchdowns.

At the end of the game Friday, Harper had tacked on 195 yards on 15 carries and scored four times.

The Norskies improved to 5-1 overall and 3-0 in the conference. Reedsburg coach Brian Pottinger noted the difficulty of playing two strong teams back to back, saying "DeForest is much like Waunakee in the fact that they have great talent every year. It's tough battling those two teams in back to back weeks but I think it forces our team to really focus in practice."

Harper did all his damage in the second quarter when DeForest scored 27 points and took a 34-0 lead into the locker room at halftime. The Beavers played well in the first quarter, going play for play with DeForest and forcing a pair of first quarter turnovers. The Beaver offense, still struggling to get the running game going, struggled again with them having to punt on three of their first-quarter possessions. But the Beaver defense was up to the challenge in the early going. On DeForest's first possession Tyler Archambo intercepted a Kyler Jilit pass attempt to give the Beavers a first and 10 at the DeForest 44 yard line. A 15 yard personal foul call on the Norskies gave Reedsburg great field position at the DeForest 29. Luke Bjorklund gained three yards on first down and the Beavers were faced with a third and six from the 25, but Weston Ernstmeyer was held to a two yard gain. On fourth and four the Beavers went for it but Ernstmeyer was held short of the first down by a yard and the Norskies took over on downs.

DeForest moved out to their 38 and on third and four Harper picked up a first down, but fumbled on the play and Justin Bergman recovered for Reedsburg at the Norskies 49 yard line. "Our defense put the game plan into action exactly like we talked about all week with the turnovers and great field position," said Pottinger. "Obviously, we couldn't get the job done on offense and it caught up with us eventually." But the offense stumbled again and the Beavers were forced to punt. Tyler Arneson got off a good punt that pushed DeForest's Brett Minick all the way back to the 14 yard line. Minnick ran into a wall around the 40, but emerged on the other side and raced down the sideline on an 86 yard punt return for a touchdown that put the Norskies up 7-0 with 2:57 left in the first quarter.

Reedsburg took over at their own 20 and Bjorklund hit Ben Turner with an eight yard completion. Austin Westerwelle was stopped for no gain but Bjorklund picked up a first down to the 31. DeForest's defense then held the Beavers to no yards on three rushing attempts and Arneson punted again as the first quarter ended. The Norskies started at their own 40 and on the first play Harper gained 24 yards to the Beaver 36 and on the next play Harper broke loose for his first touchdown to put the Norskies up 14-0 just 38 seconds into the second quarter. Pottinger said "It's extremely difficult to contain a kid like Harper the whole game because he's going to make plays."

After the Beavers punted again on their next possession the Norskies took over at their own 47. Jilot hit Minick with a 16 yard completion to the Reedsburg 34 and Harper picked up seven yards to the 27. On the next play Harper scored again as he rolled into the end zone basically untouched from 27 yards out to give the Norskies a 21-0 lead with 8:12 left in the first half. DeForest went up 27-0 on their next possession. Starting at the Reedsburg 46 the Norskies attempted a pass play but Matt Olson made a great play when he knocked away Jilot's pass attempt to Minick at the 20 yard line. Two plays later Harper took the handoff from Jilot and rumbled in from 46 yards out for his third touchdown of the quarter, giving DeForest a 27-0 lead. "It's a tall task for any defense to have to take on the challenge of slowing down those two backs (Musso and Harper). But if you want to play at a high level, that's exactly what you have to do."

The Norskie defense then cranked it up a notch on Reedsburg's next series. Starting at the 20 the Beavers lost a yard on first down and Bjorklund was tackled for a five yard loss on second down. On third and 16 Bjorklund was again tackled for a loss that pushed the Beavers all the way back to their own 12 yard line where Arneson punted. John Vander Molen returned the punt all the way to the Reedsburg 32. On second and 10 Harper picked up 24 yards to the eight and two plays later he scored from five yards out to put the Beavers down 34-0 at the end of the first half.

After the break the Reedsburg defense held DeForest to a three and out on the Norskies first possession but again the offense faltered, losing 10 yards on three plays and forcing a fourth and 20 from the 27. Arneson's punt pushed DeForest all the way back to their own 25 yard line. On first down the Beavers were whistled for pass interference, giving them a first and 10 at the 40 yard line. DeForest picked up a first down to the 50 but the Norskies were called for holding that pushed them back to the 47 yard line. On the next play Jilot handed off to Harper who headed to his right, where he then handed off to Minick on the classic reverse and Minick raced 53 yards for the touchdown that gave DeForest a 41-0 lead with 4:40 left in the third quarter.

The Beavers scored on their first possession of the fourth quarter. On second and nine from the DeForest 40 Bjorklund tossed a pass towards Turner, but the Norskies were called for pass interference that gave Reedsburg a first and 10 at the 23 yard line. Bjorklund and Dillon Klahn picked up three yards each and Dakota Perron added a five yard gain to the 12 and Bjorklund scored on the next play that made the score 41-7 with 8:57 left in the game. Pottinger did find a positive after the game, saying "We have faced some really good defense the past two weeks and because of that it's hard to find a lot of positives whey you watch game film. I will say this - our kids don't back down from a challenge. It's also nice to get some younger players varsity game experience."

The teams traded possessions the rest of the game and DeForest walked away with the 41-7 win. Bryar harper led all rushers with 195 yards and four touchdowns on 15 carries. Dillon Klahn had 18 yards on five carries to lead the Beavers, who now will focus on Friday night's Homecoming game against the Milton Red Hawks at Millennium Field. Milton is 2-4 overall and 1-3 in the Badger South. The Red Hawks "always have talented players who seem to play with a chip on their shoulder," said Pottinger. "They like to spread it out on offense in their shotgun formations and they'll try to get you into long yardage situations with various blitzes and other schemes on defense." As for Homecoming and all the distractions, the coach said "Homecoming week is always a double edged sword - there are a ton of distractions but at the same time the motivation is there to play a great game. The players are really looking forward to getting paid this Friday for all their hard work."

DeForest 41, Reedsburg 7

Reedsburg 0 0 0 7 - 7

DeForest 7 27 7 0 - 41

DeF-TD Minick 85 punt return (Butler kick), 1st 2:57

DeF-TD Harper 36 run (Butler kick), 2nd 11:22

DeF-TD Harper 27 run (Butler kick), 8:12

DeF-TD Harper 46 run (Kick failed), 5:00

DeF-TD Harper 5 run (Butler kick), 1:43

DeF-TD Minick 53 run (Butler kick), 4:40

Re-TD Bjorklund 16 run (Arneson kick), 8:59

Re DeF

First downs 6 9

Total Net Yards 0 0

Rushes-yards 42-58 33-317

Passing yards 19 23

Comp-Att-Int 2-4-0 3-7-1

Penalties-Yards 3-35 4-49

Fumbles Lost 0 1


RUSHING-Re, Jake Cohn 4-21. DeF, Bryar Harper 15-195.

PASSING-Re, Luke Bjorklund 2-4-0-19. DeF, Kyler Jilot 3-7-1-23.

RECEIVING-Re, Kyle Mundth 1-11. DeF, Brett Minick 2-18.

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