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Whitefish Bay hands Lancers, Kennedy opening-night defeat

Aug. 22, 2014

It was not the type of debut that Brookfield Central coach Jed Kennedy was hoping for Friday night, as Whitefish Bay dominated the Lancers and rolled to a 20-6 victory at Central in the season opener.

“The defense was on the field most of the game,” Kennedy said. “What did they have, 75 offensive plays? We have physical kids up front but they just didn’t play that way.”
 
An elated Whitefish Bay coach Jim Tietjen had an answer for that.

“I was concerned with all these new rules about our conditioning,” he said. “But I felt our kids were in better shape. We got after them. There were points early in the game I felt when we drove on them, they were tired.

“They got the big guys and the heat takes it toll on them. We’re not very big, but our kids rose to the occasion. We had some questions coming in and we answered them.”

After BC senior linebacker Matt Patterson sacked Bay quarterback Jake Fisher to stop the opening drive, the Blue Dukes stopped Central on a 3-and-out and put together a 10-play, 74-yard drive.

Junior running back Van Bassingdale carried the ball seven times for 48 yards on the drive and scored the game’s first touchdown from two yards out with 3 minutes and 40 seconds left to play. Jack Ludke booted the point after for a 7-0 lead.

After another 3-and-out for the Lancers, Bay went 73 yards on 10 plays, as running back Adam Strehlow finished it off by racing around right end and scoring from 14 yards out. Ludke’s point after made it 14-0 with 8:38 left in the half.
Once again, Bassindale carried it six times for 28 yards on the drive. Running back Macklin Kortebein had a 13-yard run to help keep the drive alive.

Central then ran a 5-play drive which ended when defensive back Matt Bernstein picked off a Dominic LabBellarte pass at the Bay 12-yard line.
 

The Lancers took the ball 11 plays to close out the half with their best drive, but Labellarte’s incompletion ended the half.

The Lancers played Bay even in the second half, as each team had a long drive to eat up the third quarter. Ludke missed a 30-yard field goal, the closest any team came to scoring.

Bassindale scored on a 6-yard run with 6:39 left to play, and then the Lancers scored on a 4-yard run by junior running back Mitch Meves with 2:35 left to play.

Bassindale rushed for 153 yards in 30 carries and two scores and Strehlow ran 85 yards in 10 carries and a score. Labellarte rushed for 50 yards in 13 carries.

“In the second half it was an even ballgame,” Kennedy said. “They have a lot of philosophies that we do. They control the clock. We gave the offense a lot of possessions. We would go 3 and out, then they would have a 10 or 12 play drive. That’s what was frustrating. We could not get in the flow offensively.

“What’s disappointing was we just made a lot of mistakes, a lot of things we hadn’t seen in the last few weeks. We had some kids get under the lights and got a little star struck.
We’re going to keep plugging away. Hopefully we’ll have a better performance than we did tonight.”
 
Kennedy took responsibility with the way his team played.

“When we make mistakes I take ownership for that,” he said. “We have to coach better. We’ll find a way to get this thing correct. It wasn’t the opener that I thought we’d have, but we just have to keep plugging away.”

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