Auburndale wins rematch with Manawa
By City Times staff
MANAWA – The Auburndale Apaches avenged a week two loss to Manawa, and beat the Wolves 31-16 in a Division 6 level one football playoff contest Oct. 19 at Manawa. The Apaches went in as a No. 6 underdog, playing a team that beat them 34-22 in August.
“Just feels great to be able to be moving on and having that opportunity,” Auburndale Head Coach Jay Anderson said after the game. “We really talked to our kids about taking advantage of every moment. You don’t get do-overs, and this kind of feels like one. We got a do-over here, and we were able to make the adjustments from the first time we played them, and with our game plan, we were pretty happy with what we were putting down, and our guys really did execute.”
The Apaches got off to a fast start, taking the opening drive 70 yards in seven plays, scoring on a four-yard touchdown run by fullback Aaron Marth to take a 7-0 lead. Anderson said that drive set the tone for the rest of the game. “It really is very important to come out like that and get that tone, and say that we’re gonna be able to run our offense effectively. We’re strong between the tackles, and we got some toss sweeps mixed in there, and some effective quarterback play, so it is very important to come out like that, and it really helped us,” Anderson said.
But, Manawa responded with a 13-play 62-yard driving, capped off by a 36-yard field goal by Mason Wiesner to make it a 7-3 game after one quarter.
Both teams had long drives stall out after that, followed by a three-and-out by the Apaches. The Wolves got the ball back at their own 29 after an Auburndale punt, but three plays later, Wiesner threw an interception, and the Apaches would capitalize. Quarterback Cooper Weinfurter led Auburndale on a 12-play 51-yard drive, scoring on a one-yard TD run by Marth – his seventh of the season.
Manawa responded again. The Wolves took the opening drive of the second half 76 yards in 10 plays, scoring on a three-yard run by running back Seth Forbes. That cut the Auburndale lead to three. But the Apaches came right back, and went on a nine-play 90-yard touchdown drive, and scored on a three-yard run by Trayton Weister. The Apaches missed their second extra point of the night, though, and held a nine-point lead going into the fourth quarter.
After both teams had drives stall out, Auburndale recorded another three-and-out on offense, and the Wolves got the ball back at their own 27. They were moving the ball, until Cody Trowbridge stepped in front of a pass by Wiesner, and returned it 30 yards to the Manawa 30-yard line. Five plays later, Weinfurter hit Dylan Paun on a sensational throw and catch to the right corner of the end zone from 13 yards out. The Apaches missed their third extra point of the night, but grabbed a 15-point lead.
Manawa showed why they were a No. 3 seed and worthy of a home playoff game. The Wolves returned the ensuing kickoff to the Auburndale 49-yard line, and then scored eight plays later on a three-yard run by Wiesner. The Wolves went for two, but were stopped, keeping the Auburndale lead at nine. The Apaches added an exclamation point on the game, went Weister scored on a 10-yard run with 1:22 left in the game to stretch the Auburndale lead to 15. He lead the Apaches with 32 carries for 152 yards and two touchdowns, his 10th and 11th of the season. Marth added 13 carries for 66 yards and two scores. Weinfurter was 7-for-11 passing with 92 yards and a touchdown. Paun caught three balls for 36 yards and a score.
The Apaches improved to 5-5, and face No. 2 Abbotsford in level two Oct. 26 at Abbotsford.