Bucs fall two points short in New Ulm
It was a game of big plays as Blue Earth Area traveled to New Ulm to take on the Eagles in a rare Wednesday afternoon football game. In the end the Eagles had too many big plays, downing the Bucs by the final score of 26-24.
The Eagles got on the scoreboard first as Cody Kohn intercepted a Garrett Anderson pass and returned it 27 yards for a touchdown. The two point conversion attempt was successful and New Ulm held an 8-0 lead.
The two teams exchanged punts on their next drives and the Bucs found themselves pinned deep in their own territory at the 8-yard line.
BEA used runs by Zach Tvedten and Anderson to get a first down and some breathing room out to the 19-yard line. A pass to Jared Smith added 15 yards and gave the Bucs another first down.
Two plays later the Bucs needed 8 more yards for a first down. They got all of that and more as Anderson hit Nate Carr with a pass over the middle. Carr broke free from a couple of tackles and raced to the end zone for a 63-yard touchdown. Justin Duelge kicked the extra point and the Bucs had pulled to within one point, trailing 8-7.
New Ulm was unable to get a first down on their next possession and after the Eagles punt, BEA took over on their own 24-yard line.
The Bucs were able to get three first downs and move the ball into Eagle territory before their drive stalled at the 25-yard line. A 42-yard field goal attempt by Duelge sailed through the uprights and Blue Earth Area had taken the lead 10-8 with 8:36 to go in the second quarter.
The Bucs squandered an excellent opportunity when Jake Lee blocked the Eagles punt in the next series only to have the Bucs give the ball back by fumbling as they drove into Eagle territory.
Neither team was able to sustain a drive the remainder of the first half, so the halftime score stayed 10-8 in favor of the Bucs.
The Eagles had the ball to begin the second half and were on the move until Lee intercepted a pass across the middle and returned it to the Bucs 40-yard line.
A holding penalty got the Bucs drive off to a bad start and the Eagles got the ball back at their own 13-yard line after a Bucs punt.
Three plays later quarterback Kyle Fischer hit Garrett Fischer down the sideline with a pass that turned into an 85-yard touchdown. Although the extra point was no good, the Eagles held a 14-10 lead with 7:28 to go in the third quarter.
An alert play by Cody Klinksiek gave the Bucs the ball at mid-field following the kickoff. The New Ulm kicker was apparently supposed to kick a squib kick but it turned out more like an onside kick and Klinksiek made the recovery to give the Bucs excellent field position.
It would not take long for the Buccaneers to strike as Anderson once again connected with Carr for a touchdown pass, this one covering 52 yards. A successful Duelge kick put the Bucs in front 17-14 with 5:49 left in the third quarter.
The Buc defense stopped the Eagles and another botched punt gave the Bucs the ball at the Eagle 31. Anderson made a nice run getting inside the 20 before the ball came lose and the Eagles recovered at their own 18.
Two plays later it was Fischer to Fischer again on a touchdown that covered 80-yards and put the Eagles in front 20-17. The Bucs stuffed the Eagles on the two point conversion attempt to keep the margin at three points with 3:09 remaining in quarter number three.
The Eagles stopped the Bucs on the following series and took over on their own 36 yard line. Their drive was kept alive with a couple of key third down conversions reaching the Buc 30-yard line.
The Fischer to Fischer combination worked again as they connected for a 30-yard TD. The extra point kick was no good and with 9:43 remaining in the game the Bucs were down 26-17.
Carr took the ensuing kick off and returned it 30 yards to the Bucs 45 yard line. A 10-yard pass to Collin Nienhaus advanced the Bucs to the Eagle 45-yard line. Three plays later the Bucs converted a 4th down and 8 to go situation as Dylan O’Rourke’s pass reception moved the ball to the 33-yard line.
The Bucs faced another fourth down situation after three more plays and this time Anderson ran a quarterback sneak for the first down at the 23-yard line. Runs by Tvedten and Anderson gave the Bucs a first down inside the 10-yard line.
Three plays later the Bucs found themselves again facing a fourth down play. This time, following an unsuccessful reverse play, the Bucs were looking at fourth down, goal to go, from the 23-yard line.
Once again Anderson hit Carr across the middle and once again Carr scored the touchdown. Duelge added the extra point and with 3:12 to go in the game the Bucs trailed the Eagles 26-24.
The Bucs got one last chance as a punt gave them the ball on their own 9-yard line. A Garrett Fischer interception on the Bucs first play ended the drive and secured the Eagle victory.
The loss leaves the Bucs with a 2-3 conference record (this game did not count as a conference game) and a 3-5 record overall.