Week 2: Le-Win vs Orangeville
Saturday mornings contest from Pretzel Stadium allowed us one last opportunity to see current, and former, conference rivals square off for the last time when Lena-Winslow played host to Orangeville. These two teams quickly reacquainted themselves last season when the conference realigned, and matched up twice, meeting in the regular season and the playoffs. These teams are not from last year, but you could see that neither have forgotten each other either.
The Broncos could not have planned a worst start to the game by much. Fielding the opening kickoff Le-Win kicked a sailing line drive towards the right sideline. One of the Bronco players tried to make an athletic play, but the ball hit their finger tips and went out of bounds at the Orangeville 16 yard line. To compound the issue was a penalty, followed by unsuccessful run attempts. The punt attempt was bobbled in the end zone by Zach Baker, who had to scramble just to get the kick off. The punt went out of bounds at the Orangeville 8 yard line.
Le-Win would capitalize on their first play from scrimmage when Jensen Block took a hand off up the middle and darted into the end zone. The 2 point try was good and Le-Win had an 8-0 lead with 9:25 to go in the 1st quarter. On Orangeville's ensuing possession Jake Zeal would cut in front of a Jake Doyle pass giving the Panthers the ball at the Bronco 46 yard line. After a few runs from Ethan Fye and Jack Setterstrom, Block would get the call again and would end up in the end zone from 23 yards out. The 2 point try was good and Le-Win was up 16-0 with 2:01 left in the 1st quarter and it appeared that the route was on.
On their next offensive possession, the Broncos would have a clock chewing drive that began at their own 27 yard line. Powered behind the running of Cade Janecke, Carson Rote, and Chase Jordan the Broncos would get the ball to the Le-Win 35 yard line before turning the ball over on downs with 5:08 left in the half.
The Panthers would hit the ground running, typical of their play style. After gaining 6 yards and setting up at their own 41 yard line, Ethan Fye would take a carry off right tackle, get to the sideline and made the turn around the corner and rumbled in from 59 yards out. The 2 point try failed, but the Panthers had a commanding 22-0 lead they would carry into halftime.
The second half would change after Coach Steve Snider had an inspirational moment at halftime with his team. Le-Win would go 3 and out, which doesn't happen often, but on the punt Baker would break through and block it setting the Broncos up at the Le-Win 30 yard line. Back to the ground game behind Janecke and Jordan, the Broncos would get the ball inside the 10 yard line. Janecke would get the Broncos on the board with a 4 yard TD run, but the 2 point try failed as Orangeville cut the deficit to 22-6 with 7:41 remember in the 3rd quarter.
The Panthers would get to the Orangeville 43 yard line on their next possession before turning the ball over on downs after taking almost 5 minutes off the clock. The Broncos would respond and begin going on the move again, but were stalled out at the Panther 21 yard line with 8:55 remaining in the game after a 6 minute drive.
On the ensuing Panther drive they would get to their own 46 yard line before being forced to punt. Danger lurked again in the presence of Baker as he blocked his second punt of the day setting the Broncos up at the Le-Win 23 yard line. On the second play of the series QB Jake Doyle connected with Baker for a 22 yard TD pass. A much needed 2 point try to cut the game to a 1 score lead failed, but Orangeville was within striking distance down 22-12 with 4:41 to go.
The momentum switched quickly in favor of Orangeville as the Broncos took advantage of a botched snap and Janecke fell on the ball to give the Broncos another shot with 3:42 to go at midfield. The Panthers would scheme a couple of blitzes knowing the Broncos had to take to the air, and a Jack Setterstrom sack followed by a Cole Gerber sack ended any hopes Orangeville had.
Le-Win would go on to run out the clock and close out the game with a 22-12 victory. The Panthers were led by Ethan Fye who had 123 yards rushing on the day on 13 attempts with 1 TD. Jensen Block would chip in 34 yards rushing with 2 TD's, and Jack Setterstrom would have 37 yards rushing.
The Broncos rush attack came largely on the trap game, where Cade Janecke had 80 yards rushing on 24 attempts with 1 TD. Jake Doyle was 3-6 passing for 31 yards and 1 TD. Chase Jordan had 63 yards rushing on 13 attempts. Zach Baker would have the 22 yard TD reception for his only grab of the game, and the 2 big punt blocks that led to both Broncos scores.
Le-Win (1-1) travels to East Dubuque (1-1) in a NUIC North matchup that features a coach and former pupil game with Coach Arand going up against his former QB Coach Edler. Orangeville (1-1) will get their home opener as the Galena Pirates (2-0) come to town in what looks to be a big NUIC North matchup on Saturday afternoon.