Tigers end season at 1-8, lose to Prescott in finale
Prescott's football team was rapidly streaking toward the WIAA playoffs when the New Richmond Tigers tried to derail Prescott last Thursday.
Prescott's talent at the ball-handling positions carried the Cardinals to a 28-0 win over the Tigers. The Tigers end the 2005 season with a 1-8 record after having beaten Baldwin-Woodville the previous week.
Prescott may have the most balanced offense in the Middle Border Conference this season as one of the three teams that tied for second in the MBC. The Cards presented quite a defensive challenge for the Tigers. At times the Tigers were able to get a strong pass rush going, sacking Prescott quarterback Matt Magnan four times.
The Tigers tried to stop Prescott's passing attack, which is the most productive in the conference this season. The Cards first two touchdowns came on passes of 13 and 65 yards.
"They had a couple big plays, we were in position, we just didn't finish," said Tiger coach Joe Hutter.
The Tigers weren't able to get much offense going in the first half. The offense was far more productive in the second half, though the Tigers weren't able to dent the end zone.
At halftime the Tiger coaches made changes to spread out the Prescott defense. This opened up some short passing options, including four completions to halfback Chad Aldous.
This was also the first start for Tiger sophomore quarterback Hayden Zimmerman. Hutter said Zimmerman earned the start with his play in the second half of games against Ellsworth and Baldwin-Woodville.
"He gave us some spark in the second half of those games and we wanted to see how he'd do as a starter," Hutter said.
The Tigers were also able to get more of a running game rolling in the second half. Senior halfback Mike Martinez got most of his 86 rushing yards in the second half.
This was the Tigers' second season as coach Hutter. He said the team moved in the right direction this season.
"We definitely improved as a whole. Defensively we improved, that was one of our main focuses," he said.
Hutter said the secondary became one of the strengths of the defense this season. With Matt Knutson and Brock Peterson at the corners, the Tigers became a much tougher team to pass against. And when Dan Powers was healthy he was an excellent safety.
After having some of the poorest special teams in the conference in 2004, the Tigers were drastically improved in this area. Of the 14 punts by Tony Evans, eight pinned the opponents inside their own 20. And with Brian Figueroa kicking, the Tigers have one of the better kickers in the conference.
Hutter said the focus in preparation for the 2006 season will be improving the Tiger offense. He said the Tigers should have one of the most experienced offensive lines in the conference next season, and with two experienced quarterbacks returning, the Tigers have right to think the offense will improve.
Prescott 28, New Richmond 0
Prescott 14 7 7 0 28
New Richmond 0 0 0 0 0
Pre -- Micah Herold, 13 yard pass from Matt Magnan (kick missed)
Pre -- Clynt Kistler, 65 yard pass from Magnan (Jake Charette kick)
Pre -- Ron Johnson, 1 yard run (Charette kick)
Pre -- Johnson, 8 yard run (Charette kick)
First Downs 11 14
Rushing Yards 119 196
Passing Yards 54 142
Passes 7-18-1 int. 7-11-0 int.
Penalties 1-5 3-25
NR -- Mike Martinez 18-86, Chad Aldous 12-33, Matt Roukema 1-6, Jesse Mulhollam 1-5, Ben Mortenson 1-(-1), Hayden Zimmerman 5-(-10)
NR -- Hayden Zimmerman 7-17-1 int., 54 yards; Tony Evans 0-1-0
NR -- Chad Aldous 4-30, Griffin Jameson 2-18, Nate Ball 1-6