NEWELL - The 2014 football season for the West Bend-Mallard/Gilmore City-Bradgate Wolverines was greeted by rain, mud and more rain, but the Wolverines fought through the best Mother Nature could muster to defeat Newell-Fonda by an 18-0 shutout.
With the playing field saturated from the lenghty rain, neither team was able to get any offensive flow going in the opening quarter, playing to a scoreless deadlock, that also featured a delay of an hour due to lightning.
Once play resumed, the Wolverines engineered a drive that would cap off with Travis Fehr breaking out for a 40-yard slog through the mud for a score with 6:16 to go in the half. The two-point conversion didn't pan out, giving WBM/GCB the 6-0 advantage, but it would be a start that lasted to the end of the first half of play.
HANGIN’ ON?FOR?EXTRA?YARDAGE - WBM/GCB’s Travis Fehr grasps the football tightly as he’s tackled by a pair of Newell-Fonda defenders in Friday’s Mud Bowl at Newell. Fehr would score the first touchdown of the season in the Wolverines’ 18-0 win over the Mustangs of Newell-Fonda. -- Tim Dahlhauser photo
The third frame saw WBM/GCB come up with a second scoring opportunity, this time as Jeff Riesenberg picked his way through the defense and stayed upright for a 20 yard dash into the end zone. The conversion came up short, leaving the Wolverines with a 12-0 lead with 2:35 remaining in the third frame.
Holding the 12-0 advantage to start the final quarter, the Wolverines struck quickly after the start of the final frame, with Nolan Roger Dahlhauser piking off a Newell-Fonda pass just four seconds after the start of the quarter.
With turnover in hand, West Bend-Mallard/Gilnore City-Bradgate made a nice drive and used a pass of their own with a Taylor Bennett catch to get down into the red zone. From there, Jeff Riesenberg took the ball in from 10 yards to score with 7:40 to go in the game. The conversion failed again, but now the Wolverines had that extra cushion to take them to the end of the game.
For WBM/GCB, Travis Fehr led the offense with 16 carries for 146 rushing yards, while scoring one touchdown. Jeff Riesenberg gained 53 yards and two touchdowns off just 10 rushes in the winning effort.
The Wolveirnes racked up 254 yards off 36 rushing attmepts, while Jeff Riesenberg connected on two of three passing attempts for 14 yards, with Taylor Bennett and Jack Banwart making the receptions.
The defense played well on the night, with Travis Fehr making 16 tackles, while Jack Banwart made 12 stops and Nolan Grimm addeed nine tackles.
The Wolverines will return hom to West Bend this Friday night, Sept. 5, as they host Northwood-Kensett.