Bears coast to conference football win over Clippers

Bonduel’s Weier tallies 3 total TDs
Morgan Rode
Sports Editor

The Bonduel High School football team opened Packerland Conference play in a big way, trouncing Sturgeon Bay 41-7 on Sept. 2 in Bonduel.

Bonduel scored five first-half touchdowns and stifled Sturgeon Bay’s offense for most of the contest. The Bears’ offensive attack was a balanced one, while several Bears made big defensive plays.

“This week, the focus was to get those missing pieces (that the team lacked in a tight loss to Coleman a week prior) and have every play be the play we wanted it to be,” said Bonduel quarterback Noah Weier. “Obviously, tonight we didn’t a perfect game by any means, but I think we focused enough where we could beat this team in this fashion.

“Our scout team gave us a very good look, so we wanted to get them an opportunity to play. It’s a great way to start the conference out.”

Sturgeon Bay started the game with the ball, but it was Bonduel that made an early statement. On the first play of the game, Judah Griesbach broke through for a sack. Three plays later, the Bears’ offense took over from midfield after a punt.

Bonduel scored on its first drive behind its rushing attack. Louis Hrabik did most of the heavy lifting on the drive before Gaven Vance picked up the final 23 yards, including an 11-yard score.

Sturgeon Bay was moving the ball on its second drive before Hrabik forced a fumble that Weier scooped up.

On the first play of the ensuing drive, Weier found Vance for a 30-yard gain, with Vance making an acrobatic catch. Weier later capped off the drive with a touchdown run from nine yards out on a fourth-and-two play.

“I think we know we’re a two-dimensional team, we can run, we can pass,” said Weier of the offense. “That starts at the offensive line. They’re blocking good for us, and I think we have the specialists that can do it. When we get time like we have been, we’re a tough team to beat.”

Bonduel’s defense continued its strong showing with another three-and-out on the next drive, with Jeffrey Campos finishing off a sack on third down after Griesbach applied initial pressure.

After another long, balanced drive, Hrabik scored from three yards out to make it 22-0 early in the second quarter.

The visiting Clippers worked into Bears’ territory on the next drive, but Bonduel’s defense eventually stiffened and forced a turnover on downs.

“Our DBs (defensive backs) tonight, I mean Josiah (Basten), he played a good game. We emphasized that because we knew they were a passing team, they are a spread team,” said Vance. “We threw our DBs a little bit back and widened out our outside linebackers a little bit. Whenever they would go outside, we’d shove them inside toward our middle linebackers and then clamp them up on DBs in the back.”

Bonduel didn’t score on its next offensive possession, but got a big boost from Basten after that. Basten first made a leaping interception and returned the ball to the Bonduel 22-yard line. Three plays later, Weier scored from eight yards out.

Basten had a big punt return on the next drive, getting the ball to the Bonduel 30-yard line. The first offensive play for Bonduel after that was a 30-yard touchdown pass from Weier to Vance.

Basten downplayed his two big plays, instead choosing to mention the team as a whole.

“Our coaches came up with a gameplan and each one of these guys are great guys and we just came out and executed that obviously,” said Basten. “I had some big plays, but a bunch of other guys had some big plays. It’s a team game and we rallied together, you know, look at the score.”

Bonduel finished the half a point short of starting the running clock and had trouble getting to the 35-point threshold in the second half. Bonduel’s offense went on two long drives but came up with no points after two fumbles.

Bonduel’s Karter Schroeder intercepted a pass after a long Sturgeon Bay drive, and Dylan Hillsberg recovered a fumble on another drive in the fourth quarter.

Benjamin Letter broke the long scoreless streak in the second half with a 34-yard rushing touchdown for the Bears.

The only question remaining was if Sturgeon Bay would be able to score late, which it did on a rushing touchdown with under 20 seconds to play.

Sturgeon Bay 0 0 0 7 — 7

Bonduel 14 20 0 7 — 41

First quarter

B: Gaven Vance 11-yard run (kick failed), 8:08

B: Noah Weier 9-yard run (Josiah Basten pass from Weier), 3:40

Second quarter

B: Louis Hrabik 3-yard run (Cade Johnson pass from Weier), 10:30

B: Weier 8-yard run (kick failed), 2:35

B: Vance 30-yard pass from Weier (kick failed), 1:14

Fourth quarter

B: Benjamin Letter 34-yard run (Ryan Westrich kick), 2:49

S: David Zuehlke 18-yard run (Eli Schuster kick), 0:19