By Jacob Mathias
After a tight first half, the SPASH Panthers varsity football team couldn’t pull ahead of the Marshfield Tigers Friday night at Goerke Field.
The Panthers entered the game following a 21-14 loss to the Appleton North Lightning on Sept. 8. SPASH’s season record now stands at 1-4 with no wins in Valley Football Conference play. The Panthers must now win their remaining four games to qualify for postseason play.
SPASH and Marshfield went back and forth throughout almost the entire first half, playing a defensive battle with no team scoring until :07 left in the first half. A two-yard run by Tiger quarterback Ryan Krueger and an extra point by Mason Coffren gave Marshfield a 7-0 lead and a morale boost to end the first half.
“When they get that score, that gave them some big time momentum,” said Panther Head Coach Pete McAdams. “They come into halftime…they’re very confident.”
Coffren ended the third quarter with a 37-yard field goal to bring the Tigers’ lead to 10-0.
Panther senior running back Colton Kizewski added SPASH’s first TD to the scoreboard with a 13-yard run at 4:18 in the fourth quarter. An extra point by sophomore Damien Bouchette left SPASH trailing 10-7.
A 56-yard touchdown run by Tiger running back Brant Bohman increased Marshfield’s lead to 17-7 with 2:40 remaining in the fourth quarter.
With only two seconds left in the game, SPASH made a last-ditch effort for victory. A pass by junior quarterback Brett Ehr to receiver Dayne Hoyord left the Panthers trailing by only three points.
A failed onside kick attempt by the Panthers ended the game with SPASH losing 17-14.
Kizewski lead the Panther offense with 204 rushing yards followed by junior running back Luke Bembenek trailing with 44 yards.
The Panthers travel to Wausau next week where they will take on the Wausau West Warriors (1-4) on Thom Field at 7 PM.