Spencer/Columbus football prevails despite stiff test from Regis
By Paul Lecker
EAU CLAIRE – The Spencer/Columbus Catholic football team took a huge step toward its first-ever Cloverbelt Conference championship with a thrilling 36-30 victory over Eau Claire Regis on Saturday afternoon at Carson Park.
Calvin Lenz threw a 41-yard touchdown pass to Noah Zastrow with 5:58 remaining to break a tie and the Rockets’ defense did the rest to secure the victory.
Spencer/Columbus remains perfect at 6-0 overall and in the Cloverbelt, while Regis falls to 4-2 and 3-2 in the conference.
The Rockets must win one of their final two conference games – Oct. 2 against Altoona and Oct. 16 at Osseo-Fairchild – to claim at least a share of the Cloverbelt title. Winning both games would give the Rockets the outright crown. Spencer/Columbus has never won a Cloverbelt title and Spencer’s last conference championship came in 1982 as a member of the Marawood Conference. That marks the last time Edgar or Stratford did not at least share that conference’s title.
Spencer overcame three first-half fumbles to grab a 22-15 lead at the break after Hunter Luepke scored on a 24-yard run with 25 seconds to go before halftime.
Regis tied the game early in the third quarter before Luepke scored again from 1 yard out to put S/C up 30-22.
Regis rebounded again to tie it at 30-30 before Lenz’s TD pass won it for the Rockets.
“It was a humbling win against a very good program,” Spencer/Columbus coach Jason Gorst said. “I am really proud of the way our boys battled through the adversity of penalties and turnovers. We have a lot of work to do to improve and become more disciplined, but those guys play with a lot of heart.”
Luepke finished with 158 yards rushing and Lenz added 63 yards on the ground and a score.
Spencer/Columbus will host Altoona (4-2, 3-2 Cloverbelt) at Beell Stadium in Marshfield on Oct. 2 as part of Columbus Catholic High School’s homecoming celebration. The game begins at 7 p.m.
(Hub City Times Sports Reporter Paul Lecker is also the publisher of MarshfieldAreaSports.com.)
Rockets 36, Ramblers 30
Spencer/Columbus 8 14 8 6 – 36
Eau Claire Regis 0 15 15 0 – 30
SC – Calvin Lenz 8 run (Noah Zastrow run), 6:24.
ECR – Cicha 22 run (Schober run), 10:27.
ECR – Recovered fumble in end zone (Schober kick), 7:16.
SC – Zastrow 31 run (Jonny Tomke run), 5:09.
SC – Hunter Luepke 24 run (run failed), 0:25.
ECR – Schober 35 pass from Petit (Schober kick), 10:41.
SC – Luepke 1 run (Luepke run), 4:59.
ECR – Rocksvold 19 pass from Petit (pass good), 0:40.
SC – Zastrow 41 pass from Lenz (Luepke run), 5:58.
First downs: S/C 17; Regis 9.
Rushing (att-yards): S/C 55-325; Regis 38-126.
Passing (comp-att-yards-int): S/C 3-6-86-0; Regis 3-6-59-0.
Fumbles (total-lost): S/C 3-3; Regis 0-0.
Penalties (total-yards): S/C 8-80; Regis 4-30.
Punting (no.-avg.): S/C 1-33.0; Regis 2-34.0.
Individual Statistics (Regis stats not provided)
Passing: S/C, Calvin Lenz 2-5-48-0, Noah Zastrow 1-1-38-0.
Rushing: S/C, Hunter Luepke 23-158, Lenz 10-63, Hunter Hildebrandt 9-35, Elijah Welsh 2-32, Zastrow 5-30, Jonny Tomke 4-11, Austin Post 1-0, Team 1-minus 4.
Receiving: S/C, Zastrow 1-41, Post 1-38, Hildebrandt 1-7.
Records: Spencer/Columbus 6-0 overall and Cloverbelt Conference; Regis 4-2, 3-2 Cloverbelt Conference.