WAHOO – The Wahoo football team got their 12th win of the season on Friday and their 21-7 win over Wayne put them into the first state championship game in school history.
The top-ranked Warriors moved just one step away from winning the school’s first ever football championship.
The game with the Blue Devils marked the third straight season in which the Warriors played in one of the two Class C-1 semifinal contests.
The first quarter was scoreless, but the Warriors were able to take advantage of a big special teams play from junior Grant Kolterman.
Kolterman got in and blocked Tyrus Eischeid’s punt and it was recovered by senior teammate Peyten Walling at the Wayne 19-yard line.
Five plays later, Wahoo punched the ball into the end zone on a 1-yard touchdown run from senior Trevin Luben.
An interception in the red zone cost the Warriors a chance to add to their lead with less than two minutes in the first half.
“We did not play our cleanest game. We made a lot of mistakes. We have a lot of stuff we need to clean up,” said Wahoo Coach Chad Fox.
Wahoo received the second half kickoff and quickly added to their lead on the strength of a big play in the run game.
Luben went off left tackle untouched and 40 yards later he found himself in the end zone. Senior Jesus Zaragoza added the extra point and Wahoo led 14-0 with 9:56 left in the third quarter.
“That was big for us to come out and score on our opening possession of the second half,” Fox added.
The Blue Devils refused to go away and cut the deficit to just seven points when senior Blake Bartos got free and scored on a 47-yard touchdown run with just 40 seconds left in the third quarter.
Wahoo answered the Wayne score with a 12-play, 76-yard touchdown drive which all but ensured a spot in the Class C-1 state championship game.
The Warriors faced a 4th-and-1 inside the Wayne five-yard line and Coach Fox made the decision to go for it. Sophomore Colin Ludvik converted the first down and then on the next play senior QB Thomas Waido scored from a yard out giving Wahoo a 21-7 lead with 8:38 remaining.
“It was a bit of a gamble, but I thought if we are going to make this thing go we have to get a touchdown there,” said Fox.
The Warrior defense did the rest over the final eight minutes and the Warriors took the 14-point semifinal victory.
Wahoo rushed for 208 yards on 42 carries and were led by 148 yards and two touchdowns from Luben. Ludvik added 54 more on 14 carries.
Waido finished 3-for-8 through the air for 36 yards.
The Wahoo defense limited the Devils to 99 yards on 34 carries and allowed just 38 yards through the air.
“We knew that we were going to have lean on our defense a little bit. They have been lights out all year,” added Fox.
Senior linebacker Kole Bordovsky had a monster game for Wahoo, finishing with a career-high 20 tackles.
Kolterman added 10 tackles, two sacks and a blocked kick.
Waido intercepted a pass and senior Callan Phillips and sophomore Carson Lavaley also added sacks.