NORFOLK – Barring a Friday night loss, the Wakefield Trojans football team ran away with the Class D1-6 district title, but since they’re ineligible for the playoffs, a pair of 3-1 district teams battled for the automatic spot to the playoffs while the other would try and earn a wildcard.
From Veteran’s Memorial Field in Norfolk, #9 in the Lincoln Journal Star Lutheran High Northeast welcomed in Laurel-Concord-Coleridge. Both teams entered Thursday night with their only district loss being to Wakefield.
After opening drive touchdowns and two-point conversions a late second quarter fumble by LCC allowed Lutheran High Northeast to strike. Neither team could cross the goal line in the second half, as the halftime score was the final favoring the Eagles by the score of 16-8. LHNE ends the regular season at 7-1 while the Bears dropped back-to-back to now sit 5-3.
Senior Haydyn Beaudette found junior Cort McKeown on an opening drive touchdown from five-yards during a fourth and goal play. Junior Trystan Scott ran in for the two-point conversion with 5:23 left in the first to lead 8-0. LCC then got on the board after taking up the rest of the opening quarter clock and used a three-yard run from junior Evan Haisch four seconds into the second quarter. Haisch also scored the two-point conversion to knot the game up at 8-8.
Then both teams were put to a standstill on seven straight drives. LHNE had to punt, faked a punt that failed and fumbled while the Bears punted twice and fumbled. After forcing another Eagle punt, LCC fumbled their punt return as Lutheran High Northeast recovered the ball at the Bears 30-yard line with 42 seconds left. Beaudette hooked up with McKeown for the second time on a 23-yard score as Scott scored the two-point conversion with 18 seconds left until half to take a 16-8 lead.
Moving into the second half, no one could score.
Laurel-Concord-Coleridge punted, had a pair of turnover on downs and fumbled out of the back of the Eagle endzone while Lutheran High Northeast punted, had a turnover on downs and fumbled as well before running the clock out in the final minute of the fourth quarter to hold on for the 16-8 victory.
Eight-man high school football playoffs begin next Thursday, October 22 as Class D1 and D2 brackets will come out this weekend. Class A first round teams will open October 22 as well.
Friday area schedule: The Randolph at Wausa football game was canceled.
@ Emerson-Hubbard: Allen VS Emerson-Hubbard
@ Homer: Pender VS Homer
@ O’Neill: Wayne VS O’Neill * Big Red Country ‘KTCH’ 104.9 and waynedailynews.com at 6:40 p.m.
@ Pierce: Battle Creek VS Pierce
@ Ponca: Hartington Cedar Catholic VS Ponca
@ Wakefield: Hartington-Newcastle VS Wakefield
@ Wisner-Pilger: Madison VS Wisner-Pilger
@ Wynot: Winside VS Wynot