Bombers give A-B a scare, but fall short in playoffs
Despite entering the Section 8 nine-man opening round with the No. 7 seed, the Waubun Bombers gave No. 2 Ada-Borup all they wanted to handle last Saturday in the quarterfinal round.
The Bombers came into the playoffs with a 4-4 record, while Ada-Borup was 7-1 and a team that had just blew out the Bombers 40-22 the previous week.
This game, however, would prove to be a different story. The Bombers played close to the Cougars the entire way and then some, but eventually it wasn't enough, as they lost a heartbreaker 27-24 to end their season.
"Not many people gave us much of chance going in, but our players believed in each other and really rallied around each other and gave it their best shot," said Waubun head coach Paul Clark. "As their coach, I was extremely happy about this."
Ada-Borup opened the scoring with a quick first drive that ended in a 17-yard touchdown pass.
The Bombers answered with a workmanlike drive of their own, capped off by a Ryan McArthur 10-yard run.
Using a powerful running attack, the boys in Blue went 69 yards in 11 plays -- all runs -- to cut it to 7-6.
The Bomber defense, hitting harder than they had all year, stiffened up and stopped the Cougars on their next three possessions.
"Our D really came to play against Ada's explosive offense," Clark said. "We were not just making the tackle, we were hitting and laying big licks on them.
"It was fun to watch."
Waubun eventually took the lead with a six-yard touchdown run by senior Sam Lerud.
It appeared the Bombers had control and all the momentum going into the half, after stopping the Cougars on yet another fourth down play late in the half.
But a Waubun fumble with 1:52 left in the half gave the Cougars new life.
They capitalized on the short field with a 10-yard run to take the halftime lead, 14-12.
"That was a huge play in the game," the Waubun coach said. "To our credit, we didn't let down after that score though. Many times this year a situation like this would deflate us.
"Tonight, we overcame adversity, really for the first time."
The second half started like the first, with Ada forcing a punt and scoring on its first drive to make it 20-12.
The Bombers answered with another 69-yard drive, this time relying on the acrobatic Jason Hanks for many big plays.
Hanks was on the receiving end of many crucial third and fourth down receptions and on every one of them, he did his best Randy Moss impersonation -- out-jumping the defenders for the ball.
Alan Wichern finished off the drive with a bruising one-yard run.
This cut the lead to 20-18, but the Bombers were unable to convert the PAT, something that would prove extremely costly at the end of the night.
The Bombers weren't done though, as on the last play of the third quarter, McArthur hit Hanks on a slip screen and he scampered 83 yards to pay dirt.
This gave the Bombers the lead at 24-20. Unfortunately for Waubun, it didn't hold up.
After trading punts, the Cougars were able to put a game-winning drive together, capped off by a touchdown run with three minutes left.
The Bombers were unable to get the two-minute drill working, as the Cougar defense came up with the stops it needed to end the game.
"These players have nothing to hang their heads about, they played their guts out," Clark said. "The character they showed in this game was amazing. We may not have won the game, but we certainly became men out there."
Waubun will lose just three seniors off of this squad for next season: Lerud, Alex Kent and Joe Teiken.
Ada-Borup 27, Waubun 24
Bombers - 6 6 12 0 -- 24
Cougars. - 7 7 13 0 -- 27
First Downs 24 14
Net Yards Rushing 208 132
Yards Passing 144 185
No. Passes 23 19
Completed 16 10
Had intercepted 2 1
Plays from line of scrimmage 64 58
Total Yards 352 317
Penalties/yards 0/0 3/15
Fumbles/lost 0/0 0/0
Rushing (att-yds-td) -- Waub: Sam Lerud 20-66-1; Ryan McArthur 12-39-1; Alan Wichem 6-22-1; Cody Kologi 1-5-0. TEAM: 39-132-3.
Passing (comp-att-yds-td-int) -- Waub: McArthur 10-19-185-1-1.
Receiving (rec-yds-td) -- Waub: Jason Hanks 5-157-1; Chris Mennypenny 3-10-0; Lerud 1-14-0; Joe Teiken 1-4-0.