The wins haven’t exactly been piling up this season for the Weyauwega-Fremont football team.
Coming into the final game of the season Oct. 18 at Stevens Point Pacelli, the Indians had only one win in the books, a 26-0 Central Wisconsin 8 Conference win over Wittenberg-Birnamwood. It looked like Pacelli was well on their way to handing the Indians their eighth loss of the season, but W-F came back and handed the Cardinals a 34-26 defeat.
The Indians couldn’t stop Pacelli quarterback Isaac Elliot, who threw for a school record 392 yards. On the other hand, the Cardinals had no answer for the Indians’ running back tandem of Logan Erdmann and Corey Schmidt, who ran for 194 and 160 yards, respectively.
Pacelli took an early 13-0 lead on Elliot’s 21- and 14-yard touchdown passes to Christopher Karch and Jacob Feltz, but the Indians got on the board in the first quarter on Schmidt’s 59-yard run. The Cardinals added one more score in the opening quarter on Elliot’s 44-yard pass to Chris Shibilski.
Elliot added a 2-yard TD run with 10:52 remaining in the first half to give the home team a 26-6 advantage, but that turned out to be the Cardinals’ final points of the season.
The Indians scored three times in less than six minutes to tie the game at halftime. Cody Chase and Schmidt scored from a yard out and Erdmann tied the game with a 9-yard run with 1:28 to go in the half after Aaron Schroeder picked off one of Elliot’s 46 passes in the game.
Erdmann later broke the tie with a 4-yard TD run with 10:02 left in the game after neither team scored in the third quarter. Trevor Flease added the two-point conversion on a run and the W-F defense kept the Cardinals out of the end zone the rest of the way.
“The decisive drive began late in the third quarter as we had our backs to the wall,” coach Tom Chase said. “The offense executed a great counter and Carl Koch ripped off a 19-yard run to give us a first down. The key play in the drive was when Brandon Loehrke caught a tipped pass and turned it into 9-yard gain to set up Erdmann’s run.”
Nick Handrich intercepted an Elliott pass in the end zone to end another Pacelli drive. The Indians has the for seven minutes after Handrich’s pick, but came up short on fourth down and turned the ball back over to the Cardinals with just over 2 minutes remaining.
Schroeder came up with his second interception on fourth down and the Indians were able to run the clock out with a pair of first downs.
Chase able to take a knee in the victory formation as he suffered his fourth shoulder dislocation in the game. The Indians also played without the services of Adam Krause, who sat out with a neck injury, and Dan Prillwitz, who was sidelined with a broken hand.
“It was a great finish for our team,” Chase said. “They struggled through numerous injuries to key players this year, but they did not quit. Coming off two losses to potential state-caliber teams (Amherst and Shiocton), they did a great job of playing their last game.”
The Indians had a slim 24-23 advantage in first downs, but outgained the Cardinals 453-59 through the air. Pacelli had a 380-43 advantage through the air.
Schroeder, Andrew Wild, Schmidt and Erdmann led the W-F defense with seven tackles each, while Blake Hudziak, Loehrke and Flease added five each.
W-F seniors playing in their final game included Chase, Schroeder, Loehrke, Handrich, Erdmann, Wild, Nick Walters and Alix Wigglesworth.