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Wednesday, May 6, 2015

Hinton comeback bid halted at Lawton

Sunday, October 21, 2012

(Sentinel photo by Jay Bell) Hinton senior running back Dalton Becker runs out wide against Lawton-Bronson on Friday in Lawton.
LAWTON -- A late comeback bid by Hinton was stifled by Lawton-Bronson Friday night as the Eagles held on for a 27-21 lead.

L-B (6-3, 4-3) had a stranglehold on the game for the first three and a half quarters.

Blake Sappingfield began the game with a 95-yard kickoff return for a touchdown. The Eagles led 7-0 just 18 seconds into the game after an extra point kick by Matt Smith.

Neither team would score again until the Eagles found the end zone twice in quick succession in the second quarter.

Smith threw a 20-yard touchdown pass to Kyle Peterson two minutes into the second quarter. Smith kicked the PAT and the Eagles led 14-0.

Smith threw another touchdown pass just two and a half minutes later. This time Smith found Steve Adams for a 44-yard scoring play. Smith kicked the PAT for L-B to lead 21-0. The two touchdown completions were Smith's only two attempts of the game.

"Run-wise, we did a pretty decent job all night long," said Hinton co-head coach Steve Diediker. "It wasn't really the running that was the problem. It was the throwing part of it."

The Blackhawks (6-3, 5-2) struggled on offense for much of the game. More than half of Hinton's yards were gained in the final half of the final quarter.

"Sometimes you play not to lose instead of playing to win," said Hinton co-head coach Bruce Held. "Maybe that was part of it."

Hinton coaches intentionally held out senior starting quarterback Morgan Wenzel for the second consecutive week with an injury. Senior starting guard and leading tackler Avery Peirce also missed Friday's game and is likely to miss the rest of the season with an ACL injury.

Receivers Jason Vander Kooi and Jake Hasselquist are also fighting injuries. Vander Kooi left Friday's game twice with injuries.

"It's just been a rash of injuries," Held said. "We haven't had a season like this in a long time."

(Sentinel photo by Jay Bell) Hinton's Logan Jurgensmeier wrestles down a Lawton-Bronson ball carrier on Friday.
Smith kicked what would be the decisive field goal from 37 yards out with less than a minute remaining in the opening half. The Eagles led 24-0 until Smith kicked a 25-yard field goal early in the second half to make the margin 27 points.

"We were playing a pretty darn good team on their senior night on the road," Held said. "The cards were kind of stacked against us in all regards. They were trying to salvage a season. So there were a lot of factors.

"I really liked how the game ended as far as the fourth quarter. I thought we showed a lot of resolve. It was pretty easy to cash in our chips down 27-0 going into the final quarter."

Hinton's offense finally made several big offensive plays in the fourth quarter. The offense was kick-started by a 72-yard touchdown pass from Cole Johnston to Vander Kooi with 4:44 remaining in the game. Matthies Gross-Holtick kicked the PAT to make the score 27-7.

The Blackhawks then ran a double pass on their next possession and Vander Kooi threw a 26-yard touchdown pass to Dalton Becker. Hinton trailed 27-14 with 2:59 left in the game.

Johnston threw his second touchdown pass of the game late in the fourth quarter. Johnston found Hasselquist for a 53-yard scoring play with 1:01 on the clock. Gross-Holtick kicked the PAT to set the final score as the Blackhawks were unable to score again.

Johnston was 3-for-15 passing for 141 yards with two touchdowns and two interceptions. Vander Kooi's touchdown toss was his only throw of the game.

Vander Kooi, Hasselquist and Becker's touchdown receptions were their only catches of the game. Eric Brown also caught one pass for 16 yards.

Becker carried 14 times and gained 59 yards on the ground. Cole Siders gained 24 yards on six rushing attempts. Colin Poss ran five times for 14 yards.

Logan Jurgensmeier led the Hinton defense with six solo tackles and 10 total tackles. Poss made four solo tackles and assisted on four more.

Austin Anfinson and Hasselquist each finished with five total tackles. Marcus Turman and Werner Trierweiler each made three solo tackles and one assisted tackle. Hasselquist and Turman both made one sack.

"We all just have to pull together and find some kids that can step up," Held said. "We're not really deep.

"We're trying to overcome that."

Hinton will travel to Mason City to face Newman Catholic (6-3, 6-1 Class A District 2) in the first round of the playoffs this Wednesday.

(Sentinel photo by Jay Bell) Hinton junior Cole Johnston throws a pass in Lawton on Friday.
"It's always fun playing somebody you've never seen before," Diediker said. "It will be another one of those learning experiences.

Newman runs a double wing offense that is very similar to Hinton's offense.

"It seems like that district has a lot of running kind of like we see here," Diediker said. "They're going to line up and try to run the ball at you. It's the same old thing, 'Here we come. Try and stop us.'

"We'll have to gear up to do that. That's actually probably been our strong suit this year is defending the run. They can throw the ball some too, but that's what they like to do is run it."

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