Stratford football rebounds with big Marawood win over Marathon
Tigers pile up 283 yards on the ground
By Paul Lecker
STRATFORD — The Stratford football team is going to rely on a big offensive line and a bruising run game this season in order to be successful. Friday’s game against Marathon was a testament to that.
The Tigers converted on five of six fourth-down attempts, twice pounding it in from the 1-yard line for touchdowns, and went on to defeat Marathon 24-13 in their Marawood Conference opener Friday night at Tiger Stadium.
After suffering a 35-7 loss at Stanley-Boyd in its opener Aug. 19, Stratford came out to a prove a point this week against the reigning conference champions.
Stratford piled up 283 yards on the ground and ran the ball on 57 of its 63 offensive plays.
“We tried some new things (last week), and they didn’t work out,” Stratford coach Jason Tubbs said. “My coaching staff — give them credit — said, ‘Hey, coach, we have to go back and do what we do best.’ They responded well. We conditioned like crazy all week and got in their grill, got them motivated, and they played with energy. It was there tonight.”
Stratford scored on its second possession as Kam Bornbach capped off a 10-play, 47-yard drive with a 1-yard plunge on fourth down.
After Marathon countered with a score — a 19-yard pass from junior quarterback Donavon Free to Riley Rhyner on the first play of the second quarter — the Tigers went to the ground game again.
Stratford put together a 15-play, 62-yard drive with 14 running plays as it converted on three fourth downs. The final conversion came as Kade Ehrike ran in from the 1 to put the Tigers up 14-7.
“It was a big bounce back week after what happened last week,” Bornbach said. “Nobody liked it. This shows what we are. We got better every day of the week. This is going to set the tone for a hard conference schedule. Hopefully we get better every single week, and it carries into the playoffs.”
Cole Hoffman ran around right end for a 19-yard touchdown run on the Tigers’ first possession of the second half, and Bornbach booted a 24-yard field goal 1:31 into the fourth quarter to give Stratford a 24-7 lead.
Free hit Rhyner for a 2-yard touchdown pass with 6:36 remaining, but it was too little too late for the Raiders, who fall to 1-1 overall and in the Marawood.
Bornbach finished with 156 yards rushing on 24 carries, and Hoffman added 82 yards on 14 carries. Each scoring a touchdown.
Stratford hosts Tomahawk (1-1 overall and Marawood) next Friday at Tiger Stadium.
(Hub City Times Sports Reporter Paul Lecker is also the publisher of MarshfieldAreaSports.com.)
Tigers 24, Raiders 13
Marathon 0 7 0 6 – 13
Stratford 6 8 7 3 – 24
S – Kam Bornbach 1 run (run failed), 3:12.
M – Riley Rhyner 19 pass from Donavon Free (Jordan Schneeberger), 11:55.
S – Kade Ehrike 1 run (Ehrike pass from Eli Drexler), 3:57.
S – Cole Hoffmann 19 run (Bornbach kick), 7:18.
S – Bornbach 24 field goal, 10:29.
M – Rhyner 2 pass from Free (kick failed), 6:46.
First downs: Marathon 10; Stratford 13.
Rushing (att-yards): M 19-44; S 57-283.
Passing (comp-att-yards-int): M 14-26-142-2; S 2-6-13.
Penalties (no.-yards): M 1-10; S 3-26.
Punting (no.-avg.): M 3-25.0; S 2-48.5.
Fumbles (total-lost): M 0-0; S 1-0.
Rushing: M, Donavon Free 9-46, Richie Seubert 6-0, Riley Rhyner 3-minus 2. S, Kam Bornbach 24-156, Cole Hoffmann 14-82, Eli Drexler 11-29, Kade Ehrike 5-12, A.J. Schoenfuss 2-3, Jordan Becker 1-1.
Passing: M, Free 14-26-142-2. S, Drexler 2-5-13-0, Schoenfuss 0-1-0-0.
Receiving: M, Rhyner 5-46, Nathan Stoffel 4-50, Mitchell Putnam 3-37, Seubert 2-9. S, Hoffmann 2-13.
Interceptions (defense): S, Drexler, Dilan Dehlinger.
Punting: M, Jordan Schneeberger 3-25.0. S, Hoffmann 2-48.5.
Records: Marathon 1-1 overall and Marawood Conference; Stratford 1-1, 1-0 Marawood Conference.