Sun Prairie pulls away from Craig
For the second stright week, Craig High faced another defending Big Eight Conference co-champion and pulled within 20-7 of Sun Prairie with six minutes left here Friday night.
But the euphoria was short-lived as the Cardinals responded with two touchdowns over the next 3:17 to drop the Cougars to 0-2 for the season with the 34-7 win at Monterey Stadium.
“The 34-7 score was not
really indictitive of how hard our kids competed,” Craig coach Ben McCormick said. “We did struggle to move the ball offensively, but give them credit. They had a good scheme against us.”
Sun Prairie (2-0 in the Big Eight and overall) controlled the game until Myles Johnson recovered a fourth-quarter fumble and raced 67 yards to the Sun Prairie 13. Three plays later, Craig quarterback Cameron Wright hit Nate Brault on a skinny post at the goal-line to get the Cougars within 20-7 with 6:02 remaining.
Jordan Noskowiak quickly responded for the Cardinals, returning the ensuing kickoff 45 yards to the Craig 32. After being stopped on three plays, Sun Prairie elected to pass on fourth down, and Tyler Patterson found Ross Harmon down the left sideline behind the Craig secondary for a 25-yard touchdown pass.
The misery didn’t end there, as special teams hurt the Cougars again. Craig fumbled away the ensuing kickoff, which the Cardinals capital ized on in three plays. Fullback Cody Huemmer scored from a yard out to end the Cougars’ comeback hopes.
“I thought our defense played very well,” McCormick added. “It was 20-7 in the fourth quarter, and they had the ball on fourth down.”
Even with the crushing finish, Sun Prairie used its balanced attack to hold off the Cougars. The Cardinals opened with a hurry-up offense and had their touchdown pass on the opening drive nulliefied by a holding penalty. Craig stopped the drive when Calvin Coleman intercepted Rutger Meister’s fourth-down pass.
After forcing a three-and-out, Sun Prairie regrouped in two plays as Patterson found Meister on a 39-yard touchdown strike to start the Cardinals’ scoring.
Patterson added a 2-yard rushing touchdown with 1:13 left in the first quarter for the 13-0 lead. The senior completed 11 of 20 passes for 151 yards to complement the Cardinals’ 166 yards rushing.
Exzavian Rice led Sun Prairie with 100 yards rushing on 21 carries.
Mitch Phillips led Craig with 21 yards on eight carries. Wright was harrassed all night and was held to six yards rushing on 18 carries, which included five sacks, after gaining 146 yards last week at Verona.
Overall, the Cougars were limited to 86 yards of offense.
“They brought a lot of guys in the box,” McCormick said. “Offensivelly, we were not as effective as last week, and a lot of that has to do with their defense.”
SUN PRAIRIE 34, CRAIG 7
Sun Prairie 13 0 7 14—34
Janesville Craig 0 0 0 7—7
Scoring summary: SP—Ross Harmon, 39 pass from Tyler Patterson (Jordan Noble kick). SP—Patterson, 2 run (kick failed). SP— Exzavian Rice 1 run (Noble kick). JC—Nate Brault, 11 pass from Cameron Wright (Thomas Kitching kick). SP—Harmon, 25 pass from Patterson (Noble kick). SP—Cody Huemmer, 1 run (Noble kick).
Statistics: First downs—SP 13, JC 7. Rushing—SP 32-166, JC 38-75. Yards passing—SP 151, JC 11. Passes—SP 21-11-1, JC 8-1-0. Fumbles—SP 2-2, JC 2-2. Penalties—SP 8-53, JC