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A Heartbreaking End For The Knights

By Staff | Nov 9, 2010

GRAETTINGER – In a battle of two evenly-matched teams, it’s always hard to see one team lose. It’s even harder when that loss is by a scant margin of points.

On Friday night, the loss was made even more cruel for the Graettinger/Terril Knights as they were defeated with just :09.1 to go in their quarterfinal playoff game with defending state champions Armstrong-Ringsted.

.In a re-match of last year’s quarterfinal game, Armstrong-Ringsted took an early lead in the contest on Friday night off a field goal after an interception midway through the first quarter.

Graettinger/Terril wouldn’t waste any time in answering, though, as they quickly engineered a drive that ended one for a 7-3 lead with 6:00 to go in the first frame.

The Knight defense stepped up on the next series, with Nate Howard picking off AR signal caller Spencer Clausen at the Knights’ 10 yard line and rumbled 70 yards the other way for the defensive touchdown with 3:06 to go in the quarter.

The Mustangs shook off the turnover and got a keeper from Clausen for a score in the second quarter to cut Graettinger/Terril’s lead to 14-10 with 3:06 to go in the half.

The Knights would add an exclamation point to their effort just before the half, as a trick play on the kickoff would pay off big. Howard ran a reverse 78 yards, breaking several tackles to give the Knights a 21-10 advantage with just over 2:30 to go in the half.

But Armstrong-Ringsted wouldn’t give up at that point, as they got another touchdown from Clausen to make the score 21-17 at the end of the first half.

The Knights turned to their trademark rushing offense, keyed by Nate Howard, that would pay off with a five yard scoring run with 6:26 to go in the third quarter for a 27-17 advantage over the Mustangs.

Armstrong-Ringsted started to move the ball on the resulting possession, only to have the Knight’s Colin Leiting pick off another Mustang pass from Clause with 4:28 to go in the quarter and returned it for a score to boost the Knights to a 34-17 advantage.

The Knights’ defense went to work, aided by a pair of costly penalties against the Mustangs, backing AR deep into a hole as the third quarter wound down. The Mustangs wouldn’t give up, and managed to make several completions that would result in a Travis Hantleman reception of 35 yards for a score with 2:05 to go in the third frame.Trailing 34-24, the Mustangs managed to pick off an Eric Hatland pass to get the ball back with just :45 to go in the third quarter.

The Mustangs struck quickly, using three plays to get a 10 yard run from Clausen to cut the Knights’ lead to 34-31 as the final quarter began.

Graettinger/Terril was intercepted with 9:19 to go in the final frame, but the Knights were able to stave off the Mustangs and force a punt. The Knights went on the offensive, grinding out yardage and using the clock, but a penalty stalled the drive and forced a punt with 3:48 to go in the game, and the momentum changed.

After throwing a pair of picks earlier in the game, AR’s Clausen calmly guided the Mustangs downfield to the Knights’ two-yard line after 12 plays with :16.1 to go in the game.

The Knights lined up in a goal-line defense and stopped the Mustangs on three downs, setting up fourth and goal at the two yard line. with :10 to go.

Rather than trying for a game-tying field goal and overtime, the Mustangs went for broke. Clausen faked a handoff to the left and broke right, busting through several G/T defenders to score with :09.1 to go on the clock, ending the game and the Knights’ season in the 38-34 win after the conversion kick.

Graettinger/Terril ended the campaign with 120 yards rushing off 40 plays and four of 13 passing by Hatland for 55 yards. Beau Craig had two catches for 28 yards, while Nate Howard had a 28 yard reception and Jeremiah Andrews added a 13 yard catch.

Rushing, Howard would run 30 times for 104 yards, while Jeremiah Andrews added four rushes for 15 yards and Eric Hatland ran six times for one yard.

Defensively, the Knights got 13 tackles from Jeremiah Andrews and 12 from Eric Hatland and Colin Leiting. Ty Bisenius and Blaze Alesch both made 11 tackles. Nate Howard and Colin Leiting both picked off passes in the effort for the Knights.

A Heartbreaking End For The Knights

By Staff | Nov 9, 2010

GRAETTINGER – In a battle of two evenly-matched teams, it’s always hard to see one team lose. It’s even harder when that loss is by a scant margin of points.

On Friday night, the loss was made even more cruel for the Graettinger/Terril Knights as they were defeated with just :09.1 to go in their quarterfinal playoff game with defending state champions Armstrong-Ringsted.

.In a re-match of last year’s quarterfinal game, Armstrong-Ringsted took an early lead in the contest on Friday night off a field goal after an interception midway through the first quarter.

Graettinger/Terril wouldn’t waste any time in answering, though, as they quickly engineered a drive that ended one for a 7-3 lead with 6:00 to go in the first frame.

The Knight defense stepped up on the next series, with Nate Howard picking off AR signal caller Spencer Clausen at the Knights’ 10 yard line and rumbled 70 yards the other way for the defensive touchdown with 3:06 to go in the quarter.

The Mustangs shook off the turnover and got a keeper from Clausen for a score in the second quarter to cut Graettinger/Terril’s lead to 14-10 with 3:06 to go in the half.

The Knights would add an exclamation point to their effort just before the half, as a trick play on the kickoff would pay off big. Howard ran a reverse 78 yards, breaking several tackles to give the Knights a 21-10 advantage with just over 2:30 to go in the half.

But Armstrong-Ringsted wouldn’t give up at that point, as they got another touchdown from Clausen to make the score 21-17 at the end of the first half.

The Knights turned to their trademark rushing offense, keyed by Nate Howard, that would pay off with a five yard scoring run with 6:26 to go in the third quarter for a 27-17 advantage over the Mustangs.

Armstrong-Ringsted started to move the ball on the resulting possession, only to have the Knight’s Colin Leiting pick off another Mustang pass from Clause with 4:28 to go in the quarter and returned it for a score to boost the Knights to a 34-17 advantage.

The Knights’ defense went to work, aided by a pair of costly penalties against the Mustangs, backing AR deep into a hole as the third quarter wound down. The Mustangs wouldn’t give up, and managed to make several completions that would result in a Travis Hantleman reception of 35 yards for a score with 2:05 to go in the third frame.Trailing 34-24, the Mustangs managed to pick off an Eric Hatland pass to get the ball back with just :45 to go in the third quarter.

The Mustangs struck quickly, using three plays to get a 10 yard run from Clausen to cut the Knights’ lead to 34-31 as the final quarter began.

Graettinger/Terril was intercepted with 9:19 to go in the final frame, but the Knights were able to stave off the Mustangs and force a punt. The Knights went on the offensive, grinding out yardage and using the clock, but a penalty stalled the drive and forced a punt with 3:48 to go in the game, and the momentum changed.

After throwing a pair of picks earlier in the game, AR’s Clausen calmly guided the Mustangs downfield to the Knights’ two-yard line after 12 plays with :16.1 to go in the game.

The Knights lined up in a goal-line defense and stopped the Mustangs on three downs, setting up fourth and goal at the two yard line. with :10 to go.

Rather than trying for a game-tying field goal and overtime, the Mustangs went for broke. Clausen faked a handoff to the left and broke right, busting through several G/T defenders to score with :09.1 to go on the clock, ending the game and the Knights’ season in the 38-34 win after the conversion kick.

Graettinger/Terril ended the campaign with 120 yards rushing off 40 plays and four of 13 passing by Hatland for 55 yards. Beau Craig had two catches for 28 yards, while Nate Howard had a 28 yard reception and Jeremiah Andrews added a 13 yard catch.

Rushing, Howard would run 30 times for 104 yards, while Jeremiah Andrews added four rushes for 15 yards and Eric Hatland ran six times for one yard.

Defensively, the Knights got 13 tackles from Jeremiah Andrews and 12 from Eric Hatland and Colin Leiting. Ty Bisenius and Blaze Alesch both made 11 tackles. Nate Howard and Colin Leiting both picked off passes in the effort for the Knights.