In their first game playing on the road this season, the Chetek-Weyerhaeuser football team ran into a Bloomer buzz saw as the Blackhawks rolled past the Bulldogs 50-14 on Friday, Aug. 30.
The Bulldogs (1-1) trailed 22-7 after the first quarter, but a second-quarter touchdown by C-W cut the lead to one score.
However, Bloomer (2-0) scored 28 unanswered points after that and coasted to their second win in as many games.
“We got off to a slow start, but the guys responded well, and we pulled within a score towards the end of the second quarter. We had momentum in our corner after a big defensive stop, but failed to cash in. From that point on, it was all Bloomer,” stated C-W head coach Bill Knickerbocker Jr. “We just gave up too many big plays on defense. We need to do a much better job of playing downhill and being physical.”
Offensively, Bloomer used a balanced attack as quarterback Isaiah LaGesse threw for 234 yards and two touchdowns, while five Blackhawks combined for a total of 194 rushing yards and five scores.
C-W received the opening kickoff, but fumbled the ball on their very first offensive play, which was recovered by the Blackhawks.
Eight plays later, junior Dalton Cook ran the ball in from four yards out. The two-point conversion was good, making it 8-0 in favor of the home team.
Bloomer scored again with 4:16 left on the clock in the first quarter when Leif Iverson broke loose for a 20-yard touchdown run. The failed two-point conversion attempt made it 14-0.
C-W answered right back with 26 seconds left on the clock in the first quarter when senior quarterback Dakota Herrmann connected with senior wide receiver Sammy Grotberg for a 66-yard touchdown pass. Carter Hanson, a senior, nailed the extra point attempt to cut Bloomer’s lead to 14-7.
But the Blackhawks responded quickly with a 55-yard pass to set up a 5-yard run by Iverson with one second left in the opening quarter. Bloomed tacked on the two-point conversion to increase their lead to 22-7 at the end of the first quarter.
C-W scored first in the second quarter with roughly 7:40 remaining when Herrmann engineered a critical 10-play drive that included a third-and-25 conversion where Grotberg made a spectacular catch that tipped off of a Bloomer defender and resulted in a 48-yard gain for the ‘Dogs.
Seven plays later, Herrmann capped off the drive with a 1-yard touchdown run. Hanson’s extra-point kick was true as C-W trailed by one score. Although that would be the final time the ‘Dogs scored in the game.
Bloomer would go on to score twice in the third quarter and twice in the third quarter.
The Blackhawks’ Carter Rubenzer scored on a 5-yard run with 2:38 remaining in the first half, and Iverson found the end zone for his third score of the game on a 38-yard pass from LaGesse with just 10 seconds left in the half. C-W trailed 34-14 at the break.
Bloomer’s first score of the second half was a 1-yard run by LaGesse, and later in the quarter, LaGesse found Ethan Rothbauer open for a 19-yard touchdown. Bloomer cashed in the two-point conversion on both scores to make it 50-14, which is where the score stayed through the final quarter.
Bloomer gained a total of 428 yards in 69 plays, compared to C-W’s 284 yards in 63 plays. Both teams turned the ball over twice—Bloomer fumbled twice, while the ‘Dogs fumbled once and threw one interception.
Herrmann completed 7-11 passes for 137 yards and one touchdown, along with one interception.
Grotberg caught two passes for 114 yards and one score. Junior Will Peters caught two passes for 11 yards, senior Peyton Kowalski had one reception for 11 yards and Hanson reeled in two passes for just one yard.
Herrmann was the team’s leading rusher, carrying the ball 18 times for 56 yards and one score, followed by Hanson, who had 29 yards on nine attempts. Peters ran the ball seven times for 16 yards, while twin brothers Ashton and Carter Kummet combined for 27 yards, respectively.
“I thought we had some guys that really competed hard all game long. That being said, we need all 11 guys on both sides to compete at that same level to be successful,” Knickerbocker Jr. concluded.
C-W will look to bounce back this week when they host St. Croix Falls (1-1) on Friday, Sept. 6.