Prep Football Review and Preview - FC hammers down playoff berth with win over Panthers, faces rival O-F looking for win this week

Augusta needs win to clinch auto playoff berth

Fall Creek just didn't nail down a playoff berth last Friday, Oct. 7 at Durand-Arkansaw, it floor-pounded it.

The Crickets scored the game's first 31 points and it was all they needed to crush the Panthers on their home field 31-8.

Senior quarterback Eli Laube threw for 156 yards on 8-for-12 passing but just as important for FC was the 101 yards rushing they obtained. Ryan Whittlinger led the way with 46 yards on four carries while Ben Kelly rushed for 33 on 14 carries plus a touchdown from 10 yards out.

Leo Hagberg led Fall Creek in receiving with 82 yards on three catches, including a 64-yard snag in the endzone. Laube also threw a 32-yard TD strike to Whittlinger and Bo Vollarth scored on a 38-yard fumble return with a second to go before halftime. Hagberg also made a field goal.

Unlike years past, Durand-Arkansaw didn't squash the Crickets on the ground. FC's held them to 172 yards rushing and just 54 yards passing. Dawson Hartung rushed for 119 yards for the Panthers and scored their lone TD but not until late in the fourth quarter. They also forced two key interceptions, one by Kelly and the other be Gus Pranckus and Laube forced the fumble Vollrath scored on. Whittlinger led the team in tackles with nine solos while Kelly had seven and Pranckus six.

Winning Friday against Osseo-Fairchild at Schultz Field this Friday, Oct. 14 at 7 p.m. will not only send the FC seniors off on a good note from the regular season but also potentially set up the Cricket for a potential Level 1 home playoff game on Friday, Oct. 21. The Crickets are 6-2 overall.

Osseo-Fairchild's last win in 2020 was against Fall Creek, 22-19. To pull off a victory against the Crickets O-F will have to play a complete game from start to finish which they've shown bits and pieces of all season, including their final home game last Friday vs. Neillsville/Granton.

The Thunder fell behind the Wardogs 20-0 in the second quarter but got on the scoreboard with a six-yard TD run by Drake Swett. But O-F was unable to stop N/G from driving for a score before halftime which securely put them in front. And while three Thunder players combined to throw for 136 yards on 7-of-18 passing, they also combined for three interceptions plus a fumble. OFHS was also held to just 25 yards rushing. O-F's top receivers were Mason Schmidt, two catches for 45 yards and Chase Insteness, two catches for 53 yards.

Neillsville/Granton quarterback Bryce Erickson threw for 201 yards on 12-of-19 passing and a TD. Gunnar Barth led the Wardogs in rushing with 85 yards and an eight-yard TD run and Braylon Boyer caught three passes for 110 yards including a 33-yard TD reception as well.

Speaking of getting back on the playoff track, Augusta did so and like Fall Creek did so in an emphatic way at Eleva-Strum last Friday. The Beavers spoiled Central's Homecoming with a 51-0 win.

AHS led 32-0 at halftime, quickly scored again in the third quarter to get running clock and cruised from there. The Beavers chewed E-S primarily on the ground, rushing for 300 yards led by Jackson Laxson's 111 yards rushing on eight carries and two TDs, 69 yards from quarterback Brennen King on four carries and a TD and 55 yards from Ben Dickinsen on three carries and a score. In total, nine players carried the ball at least once for Augusta. King was also 6-for-7 in the air for 87 yards and a score (19-yard pass to Dickinsen). Dickinsen led the team in receiving with 87 yards on three catches.

Augusta had a pretty good showing on defense too, holding the Cardinals to just 82 yards total offense, all of it on the ground. Ryan Julson led the team in rushing with 11 carries for 40 yards. Augusta can clinch a automatic playoff berth with a win at home Friday vs. Independence/Gilmanton. E-S concludes the 2022 season at Blair-Taylor.

2022 Prep Football Standings

Cloverbelt Conference

Team Conf. Overall
*xEau Claire Regis 6-0 8-0
xMondovi 5-1 7-1
xFall Creek 4-2 6-2
xDurand-Arkansaw 4-2 5-3
Stanley-Boyd 2-4 3-5
Neillsville/Granton 2-4 3-5
Elk Mound 1-5 1-7
Osseo-Fairchild 0-6 0-8
* - Clinched tie for conference title
x - Clinched playoff berth

Last Week's Games
Thursday, Oct.6
Eau Claire Regis 56, Stanley-Boyd 23
Friday, Oct. 7
Fall Creek 31, Durand-Arkansaw 8
Mondovi 37, Elk Mound 6
Neillsville/Granton 34, Osseo-Fairchild 6

This Week's Games
Thursday, Oct. 13
Neillsville/Granton at Eau Claire Regis
Friday, Oct. 14
Durand at Mondovi
Osseo-Fairchild at Fall Creek
Elk Mound at Stanley-Boyd
End of the regular season

Dairyland Conference

Team Conf. Overall
*xAlma/Pepin 6-0 8-0
xCochrane-Fountain City 5-1 7-1
xBlair-Taylor 5-1 5-3
Augusta 3-3 4-4
Melrose-Mindoro 2-4 2-6
Whitehall 2-4 2-6
Independence/Gilmanton 1-5 1-7
Eleva-Strum 0-6 1-7
* - Clinched tie for conference title
x - Clinched playoff berth

Last Week's Games
Friday, Oct. 7
Augusta 51, Eleva-Strum 0
Blair-Taylor 31, Cochrane-Fountain City 17
Alma/Pepin 59, Melrose-Mindoro 8
Whitehall 35, Independence/Gilmanton 17

This Week's Games
Friday, Oct. 14
Eleva-Strum at Blair-Taylor
Independence/Gilmanton at Augusta
Melrose-Mindoro at Whitehall
Alma/Pepin at Cochrane-Fountain City
End of the regular season


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