New London loses its regular-season finale
By Erik Buchinger
The New London football team closed out its 2016 season with a 24-20 road loss to Freedom on Friday, Oct. 14.
Bulldogs’ quarterback Jack Noffke completed 24 of 40 passes for 259 yards. Noffke’s top target was Parker Fermanich, who caught seven passes for 103 yards on the night.
Following a scoreless first quarter, Freedom put the first points on the board with a 35-yard touchdown reception for Jakob Balthazor early in the second, but the extra point bounced off the upright.
Remington Steele scored for New London, who took a 7-6 advantage, but Freedom’s Matt Verhasselt hauled in a 19-yard score late in the first half. The two-point conversion was unsuccessful, and the halftime score was 12-7.
In the third quarter, New London faced a fourth-and-goal from the 9-yard line and scored a touchdown to take a 14-12 advantage. However, on the ensuing kickoff, Freedom returned the kick for a touchdown to regain the lead 18-14.
The Irish scored again with a little more than seven minutes remaining to open up a double-digit lead 24-14, but the Bulldogs made the game interesting down the stretch.
New London marched down the field and scored a touchdown but missed the extra point to make it a 24-20 deficit. The Bulldogs did not recover the onside kick, but they forced a punt on the next possession.
New London threatened inside Freedom territory but threw an interception at the 5-yard line for the game-sealing pick for the Irish.