In a Pheasant Conference game that had many momentum changes and turnovers, the Chokio-Alberta/Herman-Norcross Spartans came out on the short end to the Wheaton Warriors by a score of 20-14.
“This was another Spartan/Warrior physical matchup with lots of hitting going on,” commented head coach David Hofland of C-A/H-N.
CAHN took the opening kickoff and went right down the field but were unable to finish the drive when a fumble was lost in the Wheaton end zone. Chandler Erickson intercepted a pass early in the second quarter to give the offense the ball at their own 24 yard line. From there the Spartans went 76 yards on 11 plays with Cody Picht powering over from 1 yard out. Cody had runs of 17 and 13 yards, and Alex Erickson had a 13 yard run to keep the drive going, The two point conversion run was no good and the Spartans had a 6-0 lead.
On their next possession Wheaton completed a 52 yard pass to get inside the Spartan 10 yard line and scored three plays later. The conversion was no good and the score was tied at six.
The Spartans put together a nice drive at the end of the half after Daniel Nelson returned the Warrior kickoff back to midfield behind great blocking. A nine play, 50 yard drive resulted in a Picht sprint around left end for a nine yard TD. Cody ran in the conversion to give CAHN a 14-6 lead at half.
After a series of punts and fumbles Wheaton hit on a key third down pass and scored on a 30 yard run. A failed conversion left the score at 14-12 in favor of the Spartans.
Midway through the fourth quarter the defense forced a punt deep in Warrior territory and took possession on the Wheaton 38 yard line. They moved the ball and had a first and goal from the Wheaton seven yard line but couldn't push it into the end zone. On their last possession Wheaton put together a 47 yard drive and scored with about a minute to go to come away with the win.
“This was a game where the Spartans had trouble finishing drives and the Warriors were able to finish when they needed to,” summarized Hofland.
The offense was led by Cody Picht with 103 yards rushing and two TDS on 15 carries, followed by Patrick Backman with 86 yards on 16 carries, and Daniel Nelson with 38 yards on 10 carries. Alex Erickson was 2 for 7 throwing the ball with one interception and 12 yards. Nate Gibson and Daniel Nelson each had a catch. The offensive line of Nate Gibson, Evan Ellison, Zach Gibson, Sean Lien, Justin Holslin, Kevin Stier and Mac Kampmeier blocked very well all night long.
Mac Kampmeier led the defense with two solo tackles, twelve assists and two fumble recoveries, followed by Alex Erickson with four solos and eleven assists, Cody Picht with four solos and eight assists, Daniel Nelson with four solos and nine assists, and Chandler Erickson with two solos, five assists and two interceptions.
The Spartans take on the Clinton/Graceville/Beardsley Wolverines on Friday night at 7:00pm.