Pirates end Wild Rose’s season in third round of the playoffs
The Wild Rose football team couldn’t quite get past Level 3 of the Wisconsin Interscholastic Athletic Association Division 7 football playoffs, taking an 8-7 loss against the visiting Fall River Pirates on Nov. 3, despite rolling up more yardage than the visitors.
It was a cold night, but there was no precipitation for the heavily defensive match, with fumbles and a couple of interceptions factoring into the result.
Wild Rose had the first possession of the game and moved the ball well, beginning with a kick return from Alec VandeCastle on a reverse. Senior Lucas Hackney put in a 7-yeard run, followed up by a 20-yearder by VandeCastle, with the Wildcats picking up first downs. VandeCastle had an 8-yard and another first down after that, but a fumble sent the ball to the Pirates.
Fall River started its first possession on their own 21-yard line. Tanner Liebenthal had a 5-yard run, and Luke Figola 6-yarder before the Wild Rose defense started slowing the visitors down. A sack by Wild Rose senior Dillon Martin helped to stop the Pirates who were forced to punt.
VandeCastle handled the punt return on another reverse for 24 yards, followed by Hackney getting 7- and 5-yard runs, and VandeCastle a 5-yarder. A couple of penalties came along the way for both teams before Fall River stopped the hosts with loss of yardage. Hackney would go on to catch a 26-yard pass to put the hosts inside the Pirates’ 5-yard line. Fall River put up a goal line stop to finish the first quarter scoreless.
The stop by the Pirates gave Wild Rose enough incentive to score on the first play in the second quarter with a 1-yard carry by Hackney. The PAT gave the hosts a 7-0 lead with 11:55 to play in the first half.
Fall River went to work starting from its own 38-yard line. A completed pass to Liebenthal gave the visitors 22 yards. The Pirates kept picking up first downs as Sam Nelson put in a 6-yared run and Liebenthal a 5-yarder along the way. They were getting closer to their goal, but the Wildcats slowed them up not allowing much gain. At 4th and 12, the visitors thought they’d have a shot by passing, but VandeCastle would intercept the pass in the end zone to stop the threat.