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|Paynesville Press - September 25, 2002|
Key injury costs Dogs in 26-6 loss
If the Paynesville Bulldogs football team didn't have bad luck, they wouldn't have any luck at all.|
Due to injuries, they went into Friday's game against Montevideo starting their third quarterback of the season, senior Josh Krupke.
Senior Josh Teicher leaps in an attempt to break up a pass play to Montevideo senior Cal Larson.
On the Bulldogs' second possession of the game, they marched down the field, almost as if Montevideo's defense didn't exist. They went 73 yards on nine plays and capped it off with a 20-yard touchdown run by senior Kevin Mehr.
But what happened on the point-after attempt changed the game entirely. On the two-point conversion try, Krupke broke a bone in his left leg trying to score around the right end, hobbled across the field, and was taken immediately to the hospital.
With Krupke out, Mehr moved back to quarterback and sophomore Brandon Berg filled in once again at halfback. With Mehr moving to quarterback, the Thunderhawks keyed on senior Milan Virant and held him to a season low of 38 yards on 12 carries.
But the Dogs showed a lot of heart and held on to a 6-0 lead against the Thunderhawks until midway thru the second quarter.
Montevideo called timeout midway through the second quarter and their coach gave the conference favorite a tongue-lashing. A couple plays later, they scored their first touchdown of the quarter on a 61-yard run by Aaron Janssen.
Their second touchdown changed the momentum of the game, as the Thunderhawks drove 65-yards with less than two minutes remaining in the half. They made a key seven-yard completion on fourth down near midfield and proceeded to score on a a 12-yard touchdown pass from sophomore quarterback Cody Dyshaw to senior Cal Larson, making the score 13-6 at the half.
Both teams failed to score in a defensive third quarter that saw both teams turn the ball over twice, as Virant picked off a pair of Thunderhawk passes for the Bulldogs.
Senior halfback Kevin Mehr opened the scoring against Montevideo on Friday, finding the endzone from 20 yards out to give the Bulldogs' a 6-0 lead.
Just like the third quarter, both teams exchanged possessions to start the fourth quarter, but an errant throw by Mehr was intercepted by Larson for Monte. Four plays later Dyshaw ran into the endzone on a quarterback draw from 55 yards to increase the Thunderhawks' lead to 19-6.
On the Bulldogs' next possession, they turned the ball over on downs and Montevideo put the game away on a 16-yard run by Dyshaw, who was filling in for Montevideo's injured starting quarterback, making the final score 26-6.
"When Krupke went down it just took the wind out of our sails," said senior center Brad Person.
Krupke is out for the year with a broken bone in his left leg. Senior quarterback Chris Fuchs will try to return this week, as he's suffering from a broken finger. If he can't go, freshman Jamie Paul could get the start for the Bulldogs.
The Dogs will play host to Benson in their Homecoming game this Friday. Game time is 7:30 p.m.
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