BLOOMER – Spencer/Columbus Catholic used a pair of second-half touchdowns to grab the lead and held Bloomer scoreless over the final 24 minutes to beat the Blackhawks 20-12 in a WIAA Division 5 Level 1 football playoff game Friday night at Bloomer High School.
The Rockets (6-4) will play a familiar opponent in the next round of the playoffs as they will travel to Stratford (10-0). Stratford pummeled Spooner 63-0 on Friday and have been unscored upon this season. That includes a 41-0 win over Spencer/Columbus in the season opener back on Aug. 24.
The two teams, whose schools are separated by just 15 miles, played twice last season as well. SC won the season opener before Stratford beat the Rockets in a Level 4 playoff game to qualify for the WIAA Division 5 state championship game.
“I am really proud of our guys,” SC coach Jason Gorst said. “They had a gutty performance. We focused on penalties, turnovers and time of possession, and won all three.”
Eden Jacobson had a 3-yard touchdown run midway through the first quarter to give the Rockets an early 6-0 lead.
Bloomer responded with a pair of rushing touchdowns by Carter Rubenzer, the second from 2 yards out with just 27 seconds to go before halftime, to give the Blackhawks a 12-6 lead at intermission.
Spencer/Columbus’ defense did what it needed to do in the second half, blanking Bloomer, and the offense put together two scoring drives to eke out the win.
Gage Stratman tossed a 20-yard touchdown pass to Brett Kasch with 5:03 to go in the third quarter. A two-point conversion pass from Stratman to Austin Bacon gave the Rockets a 13-12 lead.
Bacon added a 9-yard touchdown catch from Strtatman with 2:32 remaining in the game to make it 20-12 and the Rockets’ defense was able to hold on in the final two minutes.
Bacon finished with 85 yards rushing, Jacobson added 63, and Hayden Bauman had 60 as the Rockets racked up 236 yards on the ground.
Spencer/Columbus held Bloomer to just 206 yards and forced a pair of turnovers.
Rockets 20, Blackhawks 12 Spencer/Columbus 6 0 8 6 – 20 Bloomer 6 6 0 0 – 12 First Quarter SC – Eden Jacobson 3 run (run failed), 5:33. B – Carter Rubenzer 22 run (pass failed). Second Quarter B – Rubenzer 2 run (pass failed), 0:27. Third Quarter SC – Brett Kasch 20 pass from Gage Stratman (Austin Bacon pass from Stratman), 5:03. Fourth Quarter SC – Bacon 9 pass from Stratman (pass failed), 2:32. Team Statistics First downs: Spencer/Columbus 21; Bloomer 10. Rushing (att-yards): SC 61-236; B 21-98. Passing (comp-att-yards-int): SC 3-4-30-0; B 9-12-108-1. Total yards: SC 266; B 206. Penalties (no.-yards): SC 2-15; B 6-65. Fumbles (total-lost): SC none; B 1-1. Punting (no.-avg.): SC 3-27.3; B 3-33.0. Individual Statistics Rushing: SC, Austin Bacon 25-85, Eden Jacobson 17-63, Hayden Bauman 11-60, Gage Stratman 4-16, Will Gorst 1-8, Max McGiveron 3-4. B, Leif Iverson 9-71, Carter Rubenzer 5-24, Colton Buchli 1-2, Isaiah LaGesse 6-1. Passing: SC, Stratman 3-4-30-0. B, LaGesse 9-12-108-1. Receiving: SC, Bacon 2-10, Brett Kasch 1-20. B, Iverson 4-49, Rubenzer 3-31, Bowen Rothbauer 1-17, Dalton Grambo 1-11. Interception (defense): SC, Bauman. Records: Spencer/Columbus Catholic 6-4; Bloomer 7-3.