Gehlen falls short against South O’Brien in regular season finale
LE MARS — The Gehlen Catholic football team finished off the regular season with their homecoming game Friday against South O’Brien in Class A District 1 action. The result wasn’t what the Jays were hoping for as they dropped the contest by a 32-12 score.
The game was the only of the season so far in which Gehlen never held a lead in any point in the contest. The team did answer South O’Brien’s opening score with one of their own on a 7-yard pass from Connor Kraft to Keaten Bonderson, but the Wolverines added two scores in the second quarter and stayed in front the rest of the game.
South O’Brien took a 12-6 lead with a 1-yard touchdown run from Reid Nelson, the leading rusher on the team with 96 yards on 25 carries.
South O’Brien quarterback Mason Warnke, who ran for the team’s opening score of the game on a 1-yard goal line plunge, completed one of his three pass attempts in the contest for a 35-yard touchdown to Micah Davis.
Gehlen pulled to within one score in the third quarter on Kraft’s second touchdown pass of the game, again to Bonderson, on an 18-yard play. The pair found plenty of success with Bonderson coming down with 11 of Kraft’s 12 completions for 203 yards.
Kraft didn’t throw an interception, but did lose two fumbles as the Jays could not find any takeaways of their own on defense.
Gehlen’s fourth quarter troubles continued as they were held scoreless in the final frame and the Wolverines tacked on two scores. The Jays have been outscored 50-13 in the fourth quarter this season.
Jett Keith scored on a 24-yard rush and Warnke rushed for a 40-yard score to finish the game off for the Wolverines.
South O’Brien finished the game with 275 rushing yards on 48 carries while Gehlen was held to just 33 rushing yards on 29 carries. The most successful rusher for the Jays was Derek Von Arb who carried the ball 15 times for 51 yards.
Von Arb was also the team’s top tackler with 9.5 tackles. Tyrell Klein was next with 6.5 tackles while Mitchell Augustine added six tackles.
Gehlen drops to 2-4 on the season. The Jays will open the Class A postseason at Alta-Aurelia (4-3) on Friday. The two teams met in the 2014-15 district cycle with the Warriors winning both meetings including the most recent meeting which was a 21-14 win for Alta-Aurelia in overtime.