Falcons run past Greyhounds

NEW ULM – Red Rock Central jumped to a 14-0 halftime lead over New Ulm Cathedral and went on to 27-14 win over the Greyhounds in Southwest District-East play.

Falcons’ quarterback Garrett Marsh ran in from three yards for a touchdown and found Brady Rasmussen for a 68-yard scoring strike – both in the second quarter.

Colton Pankonin and Jared Schroepfer both scored on second-half touchdowns on runs of 12 and 42 yards respectively.

Colton Braulick scored on a third quarter run of 42 yards while Jacob Manderfeld tallied the final Cathedral touchdown in the fourth quarter on a 1-yard run.

“I was proud of our guys,” said Cathedral coach Denny Lux. “Defensively I thought that we played awfully tough against their size and strength that they have on that team (RRC is now 3-1). And if would not have been for a couple of plays we would have been right there. What hurt us was a few times on offense when we had opportunities and did not capitalize on them.”

One of them came on the initial offensive drive of the Greyhounds in the game when they marched from their own 35. Passes from Manderfeld of 16 yards to Tyler Mack, a 14-yard strike to Nate Hauser and a 10-yard pass to Hauser had the ball on the Red Rock Central 15. But a pass under pressure by Manderfeld was picked off by Mitchell Willhite and RRC took over on its 16.

On the Greyhounds’ next possession, they again moved the ball from their own 24 to the Falcons’ nine yard line where the drive stalled on a fourth down incompletion by Manderfeld.

RRC broke the scoreless game in the second quarter with two touchdowns in just over two minutes.

The first Falcons’ score came when Marsh raced in from nine yards out capping a 10-play, 64-yard drive.

The Falcons next score did not take as long.

After the RRC defense held Cathedral on a three-and-out, it took the Falcons one play to find the end zone.

Marsh found Rasmussen open on an out-and-up for a 68-yard touchdown pass for a 14-0 lead with 2:23 left in the first half.

Cathedral linebacker Tyler Wilson said that their game plan was to stop the Red Rock Central running game.

“We did a good job of that but we gave up a few big pass plays,” he said. “We could not stop them on the pass and that hurt us pretty bad.”

Cathedral (1-3) came out in the third quarter and seemed to gain some momentum when they went 76 yards on four plays. A 42-yard run by Colton Braulick pulled the Greyhounds to within 14-8 after a two-point conversion pass from Manderfeld to Brendan O’Brien.

But any swing in momentum in Cathedral’s favor was taken away when Red Rock mounted an eight play, 63-yard drive that ended when Cole Pankonin bulled his way into the end zone from 12 yards out and a 20-8 Falcons’ lead at the 7:02 mark.

“We have a bunch of sophomores and juniors playing and they did not quit,” Lux said. “It is a different kind of game from what they are used to.

A 1-yard run by Manderfeld that ended drive early in the fourth quarter pulled the Greyhounds to within 20-14 with 9:23 left in the contest.

But once again RRC came back with a scoring drive of its own when Jared Schroepfer ended the drive with a 32-yard run with 7:57 left in the game.

Braulick had nine carries for 85 yards and Hauser had seven carries for 55 yards. Manderfeld passed for 110 yard and was 10-of-17 and the Greyhounds rushed for 165 yards.