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Crickets squash Vikings after Schindler leaves football game in third quarter

By Cara L. Dempski

COLFAX — It is a testament to how well head coach Matt DeMoe’s “Do Your Job” philosophy is working at Colfax that the team figured out a way to get back in the game after losing one of its top players.

In football, accidents such as someone having a grip around the ball-carrier’s feet as he goes down happen. Other people falling on top of players who have their feet still in someone else’s hands happen.

Injuries happen.

 But that does not mean losing senior running back Brett Schindler to just that scenario was something Colfax was prepared for in the September 22 home non-conference contest against Fall Creek. The loss shook their confidence in a game that, until the third quarter, remained close.

The momentary blip in the Vikings’ game gave the Crickets a chance to open a 35-14 lead thanks to 28-0  second-half run  before the Colfax squad found the end zone late in the fourth to make the final score 35-22 last Friday at Lee Bjurquist Field.

Despite the loss, coach DeMoe was proud of his team.

“That’s the best they’ve played since Eleva,” DeMoe said of his players. “Maybe the best they’ve played this year. We fought back at the end, the wheels did kind of come off again toward the end when we lost Brett, but they fought back.”

The two teams spent most of the first quarter seemingly testing each other’s boundaries, before Fall Creek got on the board at the 2:48 mark with a 17-yard pass completion from JJ Pritzl to Tyler Riemenschneider to give the Crickets a 7-0 lead after Pritzl’s kick for the PAT was good.

A scant two minutes later, Schindler carried the ball into the end zone from four yards out to give the home team six points. Noah Albricht’s attempt at a pass for the two-point conversion was unsuccessful, leaving the Vikings trailing 7-6 with :49 to play in the opening quarter.

Schindler struck gold again in the second quarter, diving through the Fall Creek defense to push the ball across the plane from a yard out for the TD. Albricht’s PAT pass found Treyton Teige, to give the Vikings a 14-7 lead with 5:40 to play before halftime.

The Crickets pushed hard in the opening minutes of the second half, knotting the game at 14 with 8:39 on the clock. Fall Creek scored on a 48-yard sprint from Ethan Ritger, and another good kick from Pritzl.

The visiting team ran three more scores into the end zone in the fourth quarter. Ritger logged another touchdown on a two-yard run while Joey Kinderman bookended rushing scores of two and 55 yards around it. Pritzl tacked on successful kicks after each of the three scoring runs to give Fall Creek a 35-14 lead with 2:24 remaining in the game.

The Vikings finally managed to get their feet back under them in the closing seconds of the game, leading to a 26-yard pass from Albricht straight into the hands of Teige for the score. Albricht then connected with sophomore Mitchel Harmon on the PAT to make the scoreboard 35-22 with just :20 left to play.

Despite coming out of the game in the third, Schindler still led the team with 69 yards over the ground with two touchdowns. Albricht saw moderate success with the passing game, completing 24 of 49 passes for a total of 292 yards through the air.

The Vikings, who are still looking for their first conference win, will play their 2017 Homecoming game September 29 against Mondovi before facing Boyceville on the road October 6. Colfax, 0-3, 1-5, will finish its season October 13 at home against Durand.

Fall Creek………………..…7  0  7  21 — 35
Colfax…………………………6  8  0   8  — 22

First quarter
FC — T. Riemenschneider 17-yd. pass from J. Pritzl (J. Pritzl kick), 2:48; C — B. Schindler 4-yd. run (N. Albricht pass fails), :49.

Second quarter
C — B. Schindler 1-yd. run (T. Teige pass from N. Albricht), 5:40.

Third quarter
FC — E. Ritger 48-yd. run (J. Pritzl kick), 8:39.

Fourth quarter
FC — J. Kinderman 2-yd. run (J. Pritzl kick), 9:25; FC — E. Ritger 9-yd. run (J. Pritzl kick), 6:26; FC — J. Kinderman 55-yd. run (J. Pritzl kick), 2:24; C — T. Teige 26-yd. pass from N. Albricht (M. Harmon pass from N. Albricht), :20.

Individual Statistics
Passing (comp-att-yds-int): FC (4-27-30-0) — J. Pritzl 4-7-30-0; C (24-49-292-2) — N. Albricht 24-49-292-2.
Rushing (comp-yds): FC (50-401) — E. Ritger 34-281, J. Kinderman 13-120, J. Weggen 1-5, N. Hellegers 1-(-2), J. Pritzl 1-(-3); C (22-81) — B. Schindler 14-69, N. Albricht 5-7, T. Anderson 3-5.
Receiving (rec-yds): FC (4-30) — T. Riemenschneider 1-17, N. Hellegers 1-13; C (24-292) — T. Teige 9-91, D. Schotter 5-89, A. Pretasky 6-79, T. Anderson 2-28, M. Harmon 1-6, B. Schindler 1-(-1).