WATERVILLE – The Waterville-Elysian-Morristown Buccaneers ended the LeSueur-Henderson Giants season Friday night with a 42-22 victory in the Section 2AA Championship. The Bucs advance to the state tournament for the 14th time in school history and was able to start the game with a bang.
The opening kickoff by LeSueur-Henderson was returned by WEM’s Brady Ayers 90-yards for a touchdown and got the Bucs off to a 7-0 lead with the Jasson Alvarado extra point. The next big play would come after LSH was forced to punt. The Bucs Tate Harmon would return the punt 85-yards for a touchdown to put WEM up 14-0 with 8:22 left in the first quarter.
LeSueur-Henderson would drive the ball down to the WEM 12-yard-line where they would turn the ball over on downs. After a three and out by the Bucs a high snap by WEM would go out the back of the end zone to make the score 14-2, WEM with 2:57 in the first quarter. The Giants would get great field position on the next drive after the free kick went out of bounds at the WEM 33-yard-line. After a sack on third down LSH faced a 4th-and-20 from the 33-yard-line and was able to throw for a touchdown from quarterback Jack Swanberg to Zach Steuck to make the score 14-8, WEM with 11:48 left in the second quarter.
WEM would answer with a 72-yard drive on all run plays ending with a 10-yard touchdown run from Sebastian Lee to make the score 21-8, WEM. The Giants would come back with a big drive of their own thanks to a 33-yard pass from Swanberg to Brent O’Connell to get them into Bucs territory. The drive would end with a beautiful pass and catch from Swanberg to Christian Dwyer to make the score 21-14, WEM. The scoring wouldn’t stop as LSH would try and onside kick on the ensuing kickoff and would be recovered by WEM at their own 48. The Bucs would move down the field with quarterback runs on busted pass plays. The big play came with :13 left and when without timeouts from the 1-yard-line WEM quarterback Tate Harmon would rush in for a touchdown to make the score 28-14 at the half.
The second half would see two turnovers by WEM, but the LSH offense would not be able to capitalize on field position on WEM territory twice. The Giants would score a touchdown on a 4th-and-1 from the WEM 11 yard line with a run by Brandon Kroehler and would add a two-point conversion with a run to make the score 28-22, WEM with 9:36 left in the fourth quarter. WEM would be forced to punt after a big stop by the Giants defense at their own 47-yard-line. LSH would start the drive at their own 20 yard line and on the first play from scrimmage would fumble the ball and have it recovered by WEM.
Two plays later the Bucs would complete a touchdown pass from Tate Harmon to Zack Erdman from 18 yards and Harmon would run in for the two point conversion to make the score 36-22. After another turnover on downs by LSH at midfield WEM would score on a 44-yard touchdown run by Sebastian Lee and would finish with a 42-22 victory.
LSH would be lead in rushing by Brandon Kroehler with 53 yards on 19 carries and a touchdown. Bobby Rose led the Giants with two receptions for 47 yards.
LSH finishes the season with a 8-3 record on the season.
By: Adam Bartels