Week in review

This week was awful. Overall, it was filled with rejection. I tried to connect with two mentors and that was a failure. Most of the time, I just feel like leaving all of this behind. I wonder if anyone else has trouble fitting in. It has got to the point where I don’t even care. IT’s so frustrating. Loneliness hurts and I have no friends. I love sleep. The best part of my day is the movement I make to bed when I turn off the lights and slip into bed. There is no one there to judge or be mean. No condescending looks from. People that I can’t stand.

There has been no change. I’m just tired.

Welcome home

Jul. 31, 2007. That was the day the Minnesota Timberwolves traded away franchise icon Kevin Garnett to the Boston Celtics. The trade was engineered by Kevin Mchale, sending KG to the Celtics. And just like that, the Wolves did not have an identity or a modicum of intensity. They were perpetually rebuilding going through slogans like “united we run” and missing on draft picks. A defensive virtuoso, KG could do it all. After 12 years, he was gone. Feb. 19, 2015. This day marked the NBA trade deadline and KG returned to the Wolves in a trade that was engineered by Flip Saunders and KG, who waived his no-trade clause to make it happen. As a fan, there is nothing worse than feeling like you were let down. Life is full of disappointment and harsh realities but it is disheartening to get anything less from someone’s best while rooting for a team. I learned that when attending my first Wolves game post KG trade. I can count on one hand the athletes who never let me down and KG is one. He was on a Boston Celtics team that would win a championship over the Los Angeles Lakers, the same team that ended the 2003-04 season in the Western Conference finals for the Wolves, KG’s MVP season. That day in early March of 2008, Brett Favre announced his first of many retirements from football so a Charlotte Bobcats visit to the Target Center to face the Wolves did not exactly make the first block of highlights on Sportscenter that night. My tickets were free and I am sure many others in the Target Center were there also for a similar reason. I thought about how the corridors of the Target Center must have been so packed just four years earlier when the Wolves were in the middle of the most successful season in franchise history. On the court, the Bobcats routed the listless Wolves by 20 points. The leading scorer in that game was Jason Richardson, scoring 30 points and it was obvious that he was trying to score at least 60. On the long drive home, I listened to the post-game coverage on an AM radio station, flickering in and out on the drive away from the metro. Wolves power forward Al Jefferson, the centerpiece of the package that the Wolves received from Boston for KG said “we didn’t come to play tonight” and that was unacceptable. KG, Paul Pierce,and Ray Allen won one title and after the 2012-13 season, Pierce and Garnett were traded to the Brooklyn Nets. While KG had many iconic moments with the Wolves and Celtics, the most memorable part of his time in Brooklyn was a Beats commercial played on TV during the holiday season in 2013. In the commercial, Garnett listened to “the man” by Aloe Blacc while a throng of angry and noisy fans hurled insults and even threw beverages at the team bus. At the end of the commercial, KG’s amazing focus accompanied the spectacular head phones. There was nobody quite like KG who could block out the haters. The NBA is a league of connected players and coaches. On Feb. 25 in his first game back with the Timberwolves, Garnett played for Saunders, the head coach during the glory days. Leading the opposing Washington Wizards was their head coach Randy Wittman, the ex-Minnesota head coach who was the head coach for Garnett before the trade to Boston. Garnett battled against Nene, just as they did in the Western Conference first round playoffs in 2004. In that year, Howard Dean ran for president and Lindsay Lohan hosted the MTV movie awards. The trade that brought KG back to Minnesota was not the premier trade nationally. Some might say Goran Dragic moving from the Phoenix Suns to the Miami Heat was a bigger “here and now” trade or the other three dozen deals altered the landscape of the league more than a 38-year old Garnett coming back to Hennepin County. But, the number one guideline of mass media is to “give the people what they want” and that was true while watching the first two home games of the Wolves since the KG return. It was a trade that brought back a surge of excitement and fans in their old or new no. 21 jerseys.

Update

I don’t keep up with this blog much anymore. The person who I worked with and connected with about this blog no longer lives in this area.  Come to think of it, everyone I got along kind of moved on. I have a lot of problems and issues in my life. Overall, I’m unhappy with my professional life. There are really no opportunities in this region. Also, I don’t have any mentors. I feel like I preach about mentors quite a bit. All of the mentors I ever wished to associate with either saw me as cheap labor or passed me off, ignored me, or just had no use for me. I give a lot to every job and to others only to feel awful. I wonder where to go, I certainly don’t enjoy this area. I feel like I just need a break and things will be fine. But lately, it is not happening and I am miserable. I am just so tired of everything. None of this matters and while I continue to do what I have to do in trying and finding new opportunities, those chances have probably passed.

prep sports, vol. 6

The BOLD Warriors made the dream of playing in the Prep Bowl a reality with 12 straight wins and a run in the state tournament. For BOLD right guard Jon Schulte, being in TCF Bank Stadium was an experience that can succinctly be described as awesome. “My first reaction was just pure shock,” Schulte said of being in the stadium for the first time. “It was really crazy being on the same field as the Gophers, Vikings, and all the amazing athletes that have played on that field.” The BOLD Warriors played their first football game at TCF Bank Stadium on Nov. 21. Since it opened in 2009, the on-campus stadium has hosted concerts and sporting events. BOLD offensive coordinator Daren Sagedahl said it was inspiring to see the facial expressions when the Warriors arrived on the last Friday before Thanksgiving. “TCF Bank Stadium was a classy place to play and the people in charge of our team were wonderful to work with. The body language of the players was fun to watch as they entered the stadium and the locker rooms,” Sagedahl said. “It was an experience all will remember.” BOLD defensive coordinator Dan Gross has coached in the Hubert H. Humphrey Metrodome and TCF Bank Stadium and the benefit of having coaches in the booth closer to the action was vital. “In the Dome, the press boxes were so far away from the field and our coaches said right away that TCF Bank Stadium was a better place to be,” Gross said. “We were focused on what we wanted to do and there was not a lot of time but walking through the tunnel, guys were excited.” Forty-eight hours before the Minnesota Vikings hosted the Green Bay Packers, Ben Steffel surveyed the field that he and his Warrior teammates would be playing on for the Class AA championship in the 33rd Prep Bowl. For nearly one month of postseason football, teams focused on each game hoping to advance for one opportunity to bring a championship home. For the fans watching the game on television, the game was thrilling and Gross commented on how a televised game can impact in-game communication. “The TV timeouts played into it,” Gross said. “There was a pause it seemed every five minutes or so and it got to the point where coaches ran out of things to say and we just took the moment in.” Steffel spoke of the moment when he was introduced to TCF Bank Stadium. “I set my stuff down and asked if we could go check out the field. When I walked out onto the field, it was amazing to think in about an hour, I would be playing out there,” Steffel said. In 2014, TCF Bank Stadium has been the stage for several iconic gridiron heroes such as Tom Brady, Larry Fitzgerald and Aaron Rodgers as the Vikings are in the first year of playing their home games in the horseshoe-shaped stadium while construction on their new state-of-the-art stadium occurs. “It was also amazing to think that I would be playing on the same field that many of the best NFL players have played on,” Steffel stated. With games in Alexandria, Eden Prairie, and Minneapolis, the fans were there as witnesses. “At each game during our state run, we outnumbered the other team’s fans and that shows the pride this community has in their athletic programs,” Sagedahl said. “Ever since I started coaching at BOLD in 1996, this community has been a huge supporter of the coaches, the players, and all sports each and every season. There is definitely a sense of pride to being a BOLD Warrior and I am very proud to live here and be a part of it.” With the Warriors were their fans stationed behind the heated benches on the visiting team sidelines adorned in red and black. “The fan support was amazing. It was such a cool sight seeing all the fans from BOLD cheering us on,” Schulte said. The moment of playing for a Prep Bowl championship brought out every fiber from players and fans alike and Schulte said the sound of the fans after a scoring play made for memorable moments on their own. “At some points, I could not even hear some of our guys yelling; it was so loud, especially the roar every time we scored,” Schulte shared. “Red was well-represented,” Gross stated and pointed out to the contingent who traveled to Minneapolis in comparison to other title games. “The 4A game was right after us and we had a bigger crowd than Becker and DeLaSalle. The feeling of support from the communities is something I hope the kids cherish.” Sagedahl noted the fan involvement, impressed with how loyal and encouraging the contingent was as the team advanced through the playoffs away from their home field. “The community support was amazing all year but it really shined when we went on our state run,” Sagedahl said. “Many donations include paying for the fan bus, charter bus for the team, emergency vehicles for the send offs, hand warmers and hats, the list goes on; plus, the fact we as a community travel very well.” A world-class facility hosted championships on Friday and Saturday and the environment was remarkable. “It was one of the most amazing experiences I have had, win or lose,” Schulte said.

prep sports, vol. 5

Two teams with similar football blueprints exerted every bit of energy they had as the BOLD Warriors were edged 20-18 in a double overtime thriller by the Holdingford Huskers for the Class AA championship on Nov. 21 at TCF Bank Stadium on the campus of the University of Minnesota. In 2012, BOLD defeated Holdingford 23-20 in a double overtime state quarterfinal win. “Like all competitions, unfortunately someone has to lose the game and I’m sure Holdingford had these same feelings two years ago,” BOLD offensive coordinator Daren Sagedahl said. “The part that impresses me the most is the class our team showed during the game and especially after when the emotions are flying high, our players showed amazing class after a very tough emotional loss.” BOLD received the opening kickoff and on the second offensive play, Ben Steffel rushed for 17 yards. Operating from the shotgun on 3rd and eight, Lane Stadther rushed for a first down. Brad Wolff carried for a first down to the Holdingford 22-yard line keyed by a Jon Schulte block. The opening drive got inside the 20, but Holdingford made a defensive stop to end a 13 play drive that consumed the majority of the first quarter. From a diamond formation on 3rd and five, Austin Einerson wrapped up for a tackle. Jake Rauenhorst stopped Nathan Brinker on fourth down to give the Warriors the ball at the Holdingford 25. Einerson recorded the first BOLD sack in the second quarter of Holdingford quarterback Austin Gerads. Wolff and Austin Tersteeg combined to stop Brinker on a 3rd and six to force a punt. Nick Kubesh delivered a 61-yard punt for BOLD late in the second quarter as both teams headed to the locker rooms after a scoreless first half and each squad had 93 yards of total offense and five first downs entering the break. On 3rd and 10, Austin Weis won a jump ball battle and picked off a Gerads pass for the first Warriors turnover. Jacob Mehlhouse delivered a pancake block and Wolff converted a 3rd and seven on the first BOLD possession of the second half. On 4th and 2, Max Buchtel took the direct snap on a fake punt for a five-yard gain as Kubesh sold the fake well. On the first snap of the fourth, Rauenhorst and Manny Garcia combined on a sack to force fourth down for Holdingford. Weis picked off Gerads for the second time and BOLD took over at their own 20. On 3rd and 14, Stadther connected with Weis on a 24-yard gain into Holdingford territory. Kubesh snared a pass, using his right hand to bring in his first reception, a 16-yard play. Stadther rolled to his right on a play action bootleg to Kubesh for the second third down conversion on the drive that went 80 yards. The final play of the drive was a four-yard Wolff touchdown run to give BOLD a 6-0 lead with 3:04 remaining in regulation. On the final play of the fourth, Gerads scored a touchdown on a 10-yard scramble to tie the game on fourth down with no time remaining. Garcia blocked the point after kick attempt to give BOLD an opportunity to win in overtime. Each team had a possession at the 10-yard line in the untimed extra frames. Stadther eluded a rusher to throw a pass into the flat for nine yards to Wolff and the junior fullback scored his second touchdown of the Prep Bowl from one-yard out to give BOLD a 12-6 lead. On the first Holdingford play, Brinker scored a ten-yard touchdown on a fly sweep to tie the Prep Bowl at 12-12. Stadther and Wolff stopped Matt Messman of Holdingford on a two-point conversion attempt to force a second overtime. On fourth down from the wildcat formation, Brinker threw an eight-yard touchdown pass to a diving Gerads and a Messman run on the two-point try put Holdingford ahead by a score of 20-12. Steffel scored a seven-yard touchdown run on a toss sweep to cut the lead to 20-18 but the Warriors were stopped on the two-point try and their bid for a third overtime ended. “I couldn’t ask for much more other than obviously getting something out of the first two drives like we did all year, but I’m so proud of all of them for leaving everything on the field,” Sagedahl said. “To have three drives of at least 13 plays or more in a game is something to be very proud of, especially in the Prep Bowl.” The Warriors finished the year with a record of 12-2. “All year, the offensive unit continued to believe in what the coaches were telling them, especially after that first loss to Paynesville,” Sagedahl said. “They showed that great work ethic, leadership, faith, teamwork, and a positive attitude can take a team a long way into the playoffs.” Prep Bowl 33, Class AA title game Holdingford 20, BOLD 18 BOLD individual stats Passing: Lane Stadther 4-for-10, 66 yards. Ben Steffel 0-for-1. Rushing (attempts-yards): Brad Wolff 22-103,2 TD. Steffel 18-57, 1 TD. Stadther 6-17. Max Buchtel 1-5. Austin Weis 1-3. Receiving (receptions-yards): Nick Kubesh 2-33. Weis 1-24. Wolff 1-9. Punting: Kubesh 1-61. Interceptions: Weis,2. QB sacks: Austin Einerson,1. Manny Garcia,0.5. Jake Rauenhorst,0.5. Tackles (solo-assisted): Austin Tersteeg 8-6. Garcia 6-4. Jon Schulte 6-4. Rauenhorst 5-3. Wolff 3-3. Einerson 3-1. Kubesh 2-2. Tyler Park. Stadther 3-0. Weis 2-1. Buchtel 2-0. Logan Dahlk 1-1.

prep sports vol. 4

During the sweltering mornings of opening practices in August, each team charges into the new season with hopes of playing championship football. With two wins to open up the playoffs in Olivia, a section final win on Oct. 31 at Big Cat Stadium in Morris and a state quarterfinal win in Alexandria, BOLD advanced for an opportunity to play a championship game in a Big Ten stadium. The 2014 BOLD Warriors gave Caledonia their first and final loss of the season with a 21-0 win in the semifinals at Eden Prairie on Nov 15. “Win or lose, we will be able to say we gave our best effort,” BOLD head football coach Steve Solem said in post-victory comments. “Against Caledonia, we kept pounding and controlling the clock.” BOLD will face Holdingford for the Class AA state championship in the Prep Bowl on Nov. 21 at TCF Bank Stadium on the University of Minnesota campus in Minneapolis. “I’ve never been to TCF Bank Stadium. It is pretty awesome that my first time going there, I’ll actually be competing,” Ben Steffel said. BOLD offensive coordinator Daren Sagedahl recalled his projection on the potential of the Warriors. “We saw back when this group of seniors were in junior high that we could have a special team combined with the grades below them.This group shows amazing hard work, dedication, leadership, and have such a positive attitude,” Sagedahl said. “They set a good example not only on the football field but in the classroom and more importantly in life. When you combine these life skills with talent, you create a special team. We are very excited to represent our community in the state championship game at TCF Bank Stadium next Friday at 1:00.” Brad Wolff powered a three-yard run for a touchdown to cap off a 80-yard drive and a Nick Kubesh extra point gave BOLD a 7-0 lead, a offensive play sequence that Sagedahl said has been indicative of his team’s success. “Our offensive line once again set the tone early and the drive was a big confidence boost, knowing we could control the line of scrimmage,” Sagedahl said. A stingy BOLD defense kept Caledonia from getting into rhythm by allowing only 12 yards of total offense in the first half. On a snowy afternoon BOLD frustrated Caledonia, utilizing three second half turnovers to get the shutout win. In the third quarter, Austin Weis forced a fumble and Lane Stadther recovered it as the return set up BOLD in striking position. On a 18-yard run off right tackle, Steffel scored his 17th rushing touchdown of the season and a Kubesh extra point pushed the lead to 14-0. According to Steffel, the second touchdown of the game came in part to in-game communication and a big block to spring the play on the perimeter. “Our coaches saw that they had their linebackers stacked up in the middle so we called a run play to the outside and Brad made a really nice block for me to get to the outside untouched,” Steffel said. “Coming out at half, we all knew this was a very winnable game for us because of our solid defense and the long drives we know our offense is capable of.” Austin Weis had two second-half interceptions against Caledonia and the defensive back doubled his interception output on the year to four. Weis hauled in a 34-yard pass from Stadther and Wolff scored on a one-yard rush. Kubesh’s third point after kick gave BOLD a three-possession lead and the Warriors defense continued to ice Caledonia for a 21-0 win and the opportunity to play in the Prep Bowl. Sagedahl commented on how important it was to demonstrate a physical presence to create angles. “Caledonia had to bring their linebackers up to help on the run which later allowed us to play action pass to Weis,” Sagedahl said. “Once we were up 21-0, we went to a conservative mode calling plays with the elements of the snow and weather making it tougher to use our passing formations.” For the third straight playoff game, the Warriors defeated a team that was rated high in the Class AA rankings, a metric that Steffel said his team pays no thought to. “Our team doesn’t care about rankings; we just play who we have to and we don’t get intimidated,” Steffel stated. “I knew our defense could stop them but I also knew their defense was going to be very tough to run on since they are fast and physical.” Wolff had two sacks for BOLD and Austin Tersteeg led the Warriors with 11 solo tackles. For the third straight postseason game, Steffel and Wolff accounted for all BOLD offensive touchdowns. Steffel noted how the weather impacted the semifinal game at critical times. “Playing in the snow made the game a running attack for both teams. We have a better run defense and I thought that made the difference,” Steffel said. The deeper a team gets in the playoffs, two integral factors are field possession and the ability to run the football. Sagedahl said the Warriors made a personnel adjustment against Caledonia. “We moved Tyler Park to weak side tight end and started Logan Dahlk at tackle because both are run blocking very well and at this time of year playing outside in the cold, we need to be able to run and it worked against a very fast defense,” Sagedahl stated. “Nick showed once again how important field position is with his punting. The last time we played Caledonia, they blocked our punt twice and that was something we stressed all week in practice and the special teams came through big time.” BOLD scored 21 points against a Caledonia defense that had six shutouts during the season. “I thought that if our offense can score a couple times, our defense will stop them,” Steffel said. “Coach Sagedahl’s game plan was to run the ball, have long drives, and when we pass it’s gonna be a big play.” BOLD 21, Caledonia 0 BOLD individual stats Passing: Stadther 1-for-2, 34 yards. Rushing-(attempts-yards) Steffel 37-116, 1 TD. Wolff 16-58, 2 TD. Receiving-(receptions-yards) Weis 1-34. Kicking: Kubesh 3-for-3 on XPS. Punting: Kubesh 6-250. Forced fumbles: Weis,1.Fumble recoveries: Stadther,1. QB Sacks: Wolff,2. Jon Schulte,1. Interceptions: Weis,2. Tackles-(solo-assisted) Tersteeg 11-2. Manuel Garcia 4-4. Jake Rauenhorst 2-5. Wolff 5-1. Austin Einerson 4-0. Max Buchtel 1-3. Kubesh 3-1. Schulte 3-0. Tyler Park 1-1. Chris McRell 1-1. Alex Pietig 0-1. Weis 1-0. Zach Blum 1-0.

prep sports, vol. 3

During the sweltering mornings of opening practices in August, each team charges into the new season with hopes of playing championship football. With two wins to open up the playoffs in Olivia, a section final win on Oct. 31 at Big Cat Stadium in Morris and a state quarterfinal win in Alexandria, BOLD advanced for an opportunity to play a championship game in a Big Ten stadium. The 2014 BOLD Warriors gave Caledonia their first and final loss of the season with a 21-0 win in the semifinals at Eden Prairie on Nov 15. “Win or lose, we will be able to say we gave our best effort,” BOLD head football coach Steve Solem said in post-victory comments. “Against Caledonia, we kept pounding and controlling the clock.” BOLD will face Holdingford for the Class AA state championship in the Prep Bowl on Nov. 21 at TCF Bank Stadium on the University of Minnesota campus in Minneapolis. “I’ve never been to TCF Bank Stadium. It is pretty awesome that my first time going there, I’ll actually be competing,” Ben Steffel said. BOLD offensive coordinator Daren Sagedahl recalled his projection on the potential of the Warriors. “We saw back when this group of seniors were in junior high that we could have a special team combined with the grades below them.This group shows amazing hard work, dedication, leadership, and have such a positive attitude,” Sagedahl said. “They set a good example not only on the football field but in the classroom and more importantly in life. When you combine these life skills with talent, you create a special team. We are very excited to represent our community in the state championship game at TCF Bank Stadium next Friday at 1:00.” Brad Wolff powered a three-yard run for a touchdown to cap off a 80-yard drive and a Nick Kubesh extra point gave BOLD a 7-0 lead, a offensive play sequence that Sagedahl said has been indicative of his team’s success. “Our offensive line once again set the tone early and the drive was a big confidence boost, knowing we could control the line of scrimmage,” Sagedahl said. A stingy BOLD defense kept Caledonia from getting into rhythm by allowing only 12 yards of total offense in the first half. On a snowy afternoon BOLD frustrated Caledonia, utilizing three second half turnovers to get the shutout win. In the third quarter, Austin Weis forced a fumble and Lane Stadther recovered it as the return set up BOLD in striking position. On a 18-yard run off right tackle, Steffel scored his 17th rushing touchdown of the season and a Kubesh extra point pushed the lead to 14-0. According to Steffel, the second touchdown of the game came in part to in-game communication and a big block to spring the play on the perimeter. “Our coaches saw that they had their linebackers stacked up in the middle so we called a run play to the outside and Brad made a really nice block for me to get to the outside untouched,” Steffel said. “Coming out at half, we all knew this was a very winnable game for us because of our solid defense and the long drives we know our offense is capable of.” Austin Weis had two second-half interceptions against Caledonia and the defensive back doubled his interception output on the year to four. Weis hauled in a 34-yard pass from Stadther and Wolff scored on a one-yard rush. Kubesh’s third point after kick gave BOLD a three-possession lead and the Warriors defense continued to ice Caledonia for a 21-0 win and the opportunity to play in the Prep Bowl. Sagedahl commented on how important it was to demonstrate a physical presence to create angles. “Caledonia had to bring their linebackers up to help on the run which later allowed us to play action pass to Weis,” Sagedahl said. “Once we were up 21-0, we went to a conservative mode calling plays with the elements of the snow and weather making it tougher to use our passing formations.” For the third straight playoff game, the Warriors defeated a team that was rated high in the Class AA rankings, a metric that Steffel said his team pays no thought to. “Our team doesn’t care about rankings; we just play who we have to and we don’t get intimidated,” Steffel stated. “I knew our defense could stop them but I also knew their defense was going to be very tough to run on since they are fast and physical.” Wolff had two sacks for BOLD and Austin Tersteeg led the Warriors with 11 solo tackles. For the third straight postseason game, Steffel and Wolff accounted for all BOLD offensive touchdowns. Steffel noted how the weather impacted the semifinal game at critical times. “Playing in the snow made the game a running attack for both teams. We have a better run defense and I thought that made the difference,” Steffel said. The deeper a team gets in the playoffs, two integral factors are field possession and the ability to run the football. Sagedahl said the Warriors made a personnel adjustment against Caledonia. “We moved Tyler Park to weak side tight end and started Logan Dahlk at tackle because both are run blocking very well and at this time of year playing outside in the cold, we need to be able to run and it worked against a very fast defense,” Sagedahl stated. “Nick showed once again how important field position is with his punting. The last time we played Caledonia, they blocked our punt twice and that was something we stressed all week in practice and the special teams came through big time.” BOLD scored 21 points against a Caledonia defense that had six shutouts during the season. “I thought that if our offense can score a couple times, our defense will stop them,” Steffel said. “Coach Sagedahl’s game plan was to run the ball, have long drives, and when we pass it’s gonna be a big play.” BOLD 21, Caledonia 0 BOLD individual stats Passing: Stadther 1-for-2, 34 yards. Rushing-(attempts-yards) Steffel 37-116, 1 TD. Wolff 16-58, 2 TD. Receiving-(receptions-yards) Weis 1-34. Kicking: Kubesh 3-for-3 on XPS. Punting: Kubesh 6-250. Forced fumbles: Weis,1.Fumble recoveries: Stadther,1. QB Sacks: Wolff,2. Jon Schulte,1. Interceptions: Weis,2. Tackles-(solo-assisted) Tersteeg 11-2. Manuel Garcia 4-4. Jake Rauenhorst 2-5. Wolff 5-1. Austin Einerson 4-0. Max Buchtel 1-3. Kubesh 3-1. Schulte 3-0. Tyler Park 1-1. Chris McRell 1-1. Alex Pietig 0-1. Weis 1-0. Zach Blum 1-0.

More prep sports

On Oct. 31, the BOLD Warriors won the section 5A football championship and punched their ticket to a Minnesota State Tournament berth with a resounding 34-8 win over previously undefeated Paynesville at Big Cat Stadium on the campus of the University of Minnesota-Morris.
With a 14-8 lead, BOLD defensive back Max Buchtel intercepted a pass from Paynesville quarterback Matthew Quade late in the third quarter to set the Warriors up with the ball on the Paynesville seven-yard line.
On the first play of the fourth, junior fullback Brad Wolff jammed in a three-yard rushing touchdown to give the Warriors a two-possession lead.
While the wind at Big Cat Stadium was not a strong elemental factor, Paynesville threw caution to it by keeping the offense on the field for several fourth and long plays, even with the ball far from midfield. A shanked Paynesville punt gave BOLD possession inside the red zone and the Warriors took advantage. Defenders such as Austin Einerson and Nick Kubesh made key pass deflections to prevent the Paynesville offense from moving the chains.
With the two teams playing for the section championship and battling each other for second time in nine weeks, BOLD held a Paynesville offense accustomed to posting gaudy Madden-like offensive stat lines to eight points, a season-low.
After a scoreless first quarter, Wolff rushed for two touchdowns in the second and two Kubesh extra points gave the Warriors a 14-0 lead at halftime.
Quade hit Grant Thompson on a 20-yard touchdown pass and Thompson scored on a two-point conversion to trim the BOLD lead to 14-8. Buchtel’s critical interception, Wolff’s third rushing touchdown and a Kubesh extra point gave BOLD a 21-8 lead. The fourth Wolff rushing touchdown came on a six-yard rush and Ben Steffel first rushing touchdown of the section final put the Warriors in command with a 34-8 lead that would be the final score.
Rushing for 81 yards on 22 attempts, Wolff had four rushing touchdowns to help put the game away. Steffel rushed for 104 yards on 22 carries and a fourth quarter touchdown. Buchtel had one carry for two yards on a fourth and one to give BOLD a fresh set of downs. Collectively, BOLD rushed for 170 yards and all five scores came on the ground.
Stadther completed 4-of-5 passes for 35 yards. Kubesh had two receptions for 17 yards. Chris McRell had a catch for 16 yards. Wolff had a catch for two yards.
Since a season-opening 32-13 loss to Paynesville on Aug. 30 in Olivia, the Warriors have allowed a paltry total of 96 points in their next ten games. The defensive line played strong against their West Central Conference rival. Jake Rauenhorst had 1.5 sacks of Quade. Wolff had one and Tyler Park had a half of sack in combination with pressure from Rauenhorst.
Junior defensive tackle Manuel Garcia had ten combined tackles.
BOLD defensive coordinator Dan Gross has praised Rauenhorst for his disruptiveness in darting through blockers and the junior had nine total tackles. Sophomore Jon Schulte was in on nine total tackles and had a pass breakup to stifle the Bulldogs passing game. Wolff had seven total tackles for BOLD.
BOLD is the section 5 champion in Class AA and they will face undefeated Section 8 winner Hawley on Nov. 7 in Alexandria.