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WIAA FOOTBALL: Holmen falls to top seed, G-E-T ends Aquinas’ season



Holmen's offense lines up on a snowy night at Hartford High School in the second round of the WIAA Division 2 playoffs on Nov. 2, 2019. (PHOTO: Eric King)

HARTFORD, Wis. — It may have made for a scenic game but wet, slippery and snowy weren’t ideal conditions for football between the Hartford and Holmen high schools.

In the end, it was top-seeded Hartford that proved why it’s ranked in the Top 10 in the state with a 26-0 win over the Vikings in the second round of the Division 2 WIAA playoffs.

PHOTO: Eric King

Hartford (11-0) — a team ranked seventh in the Large Division and known throughout the state for its passing attack — amassed 236 of its 259 yards of offense on the ground, and held Holmen to just 24 total yards — all rushing.

The game, however, may have had a completely different outcome had the Vikings (7-5) capitalized on its first possession.

After sacking Hartford on third down and taking advantage of a misplayed snap on the ensuing punt, Holmen took over inside the Hartford 20 yard line.

After the first play, the Vikings were 8 yards from a touchdown. A false start, however, sent them back and Holmen ended up having to attempt a field goal, where it bobbled the snap and came away with nothing.

The game remained scoreless after the first quarter and just 7-0 at halftime.

Out of the break, Hartford was able to make some plays — including a 54-yard touchdown run by A.J. Pepin, who finished with 181 yards and two TDs — while Holmen (7-5), which lost two of its five fumbles, couldn’t get anything going.

The Vikings finished 0-for-8 passing with an interception.

Hartford was a team that had thrown for over 2,500 yards and 26 touchdowns coming in. It finished 4-for-10 for 23 yards and two interceptions. The Orioles lost a fumble, as well.

GALESVILLE, Wis. Luke Vance had 290 yards and three touchdowns on 21 carries in leading top-seeded Gale-Ettrick-Trempeleau past No. 4 Aquinas 38-0.

G-E-T (10-1), which finished the regular season ranked just outside the Top 10 in the state’s Medium Division, will now host Prairie du Chien.

Second-seeded PdC beat No. 6 Arcadia 28-14. PdC improved to 10-1, while Arcadia ends its season at 6-5.

The Blugolds (7-4) finish their season over .500 for the first time since 2008.

The only loss for the Redhawks came 30-24 to Baldwin-Woodville (8-2) in Week 2. PdC’s only loss came to 9-1 River Valley 18-7, back in early September.

BANGOR, Wis. — Carter Hortsman rushed for 223 yards and two touchdowns on 25 carries in leading second-ranked and top-seeded Bangor to a 28-0 win over Alma/Pepin.

The Cardinals (11-0), who lost in the state semis last year and won state two seasons ago, will now host on No. 2-seed Blair-Taylor (9-2), which defeated Turtle Lake (7-4) 44-6 in the second round.

A/P (6-5) and Bangor last played in the third round of the playoffs in 2016. Bangor won that matchup 54-21. The season before that, they played in the state title. Bangor won there, too, 20-14 at Camp Randall.

Host of WIZM's La Crosse Talk PM | University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point graduate | Hometown: Greenville, Wis | Avid noonball basketball player and sand volleyballer in La Crosse

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