Platteville's big plays beat Brodhead/Juda
The Platteville High Hillmen harkened back to their days of backyard football at Larsen Field on Friday night.
All four of their touchdowns came from at least 41 yards out, and they scored on offense, defense and special teams to beat host Brodhead/Juda, 31-21, in a WIAA Division 4 Level 2 football game.
Platteville moves on to face Big Foot next week. The loss ended Brodhead/Juda’s season with an 8-3 record.
“Things happened to us in this game that didn’t happen all year,” Cardinals coach B.J. Bockhop said. “A pick-six, a kickoff return—we hadn’t given up those plays. Other than that, we played a sound game.
“This is a tough one to lose.”
The Hillmen struck first with the interception return for a touchdown. Junior Chance Kupersmith jumped in front of an out route on third down, then blazed 76 yards the other way for a touchdown to start the second quarter.
After forcing a three-and-out on defense, Platteville put together a quick drive that ended with a 41-yard pass from Logan Butson to receiver Derek Schambow, who got behind defenders down the left sideline.
Brodhead/Juda regrouped and answered before halftime to trail just 13-7 at the break, but Platteville struck with another big play on the opening kickoff of the second half.
William Cooley—a running back who entered the game with more than 1,500 yards and 21 touchdowns—corraled the kickoff at the 8-yard line, sprinted up the middle and then cut outside to his left. He made a pair of defenders miss, and just 16 seconds into the second half, it was 20-7.
“We talked about it at half, that even if they went down and scored, there was a lot of football left to be played in that second half,” Bockhop said.
And the Cardinals hardly backed down.
Instead, they went 83 yards in six plays—capped off by a Tyler Updike 3-yard run.
Brodhead/Juda’s defense forced a turnover on downs, and the Cardinals seized all momentum thanks to two plays from running back Jordan Dougas. The senior caught a 30-yard pass down the sideline, then got right up and took the handoff on a counter run play and blazed 47 yards for a touchdown.
Douglas led the team with 67 rushing yards and 64 more through the air, and his score gave Brodhead/Juda the lead for the first time all game.
But Platteville called long-distance once again early in the fourth quarter. The Cardinals’ secondary lost Kupersmith down the middle of the field and he caught a 57-yard touchdown pass.
“It was just a busted coverage,” Bockhop said.
A two-point conversion gave Platteville a seven-point lead, and the Hillmen recovered a fumble which led to a James Bailie field goal that made it a two-possession game.
“I’ve got to give a ton of credit to this senior class,” Bockhop said. “If the players, and particularly the seniors, are not bought in with a new coaching staff, you’re not going to succeed. They bought in, and it’s just hard to see it end.”