on September 1, 2007 by in Uncategorized, Comments (0)

Wildcats hold on for win over Sandusky

SANDUSKY — They both started off the season on the wrong foot.

So most likely, at least one school’s football team could start their conference schedule with a win.

And for just the third time in 20 tries, it was Mayville holding onto a win over Greater Thumb East foe Sandusky, 14-12.

It all came down to a two-point conversion attempt with :45 left in the game.

Sandusky tried a rush up the middle, but was stuffed short of the goal line.

This, after Sandusky – who had problems moving the ball up and down the field for the most part – drove almost the length of the field after stopping Mayville on fourth down.

Junior Travis Narra scored from 10 yards out to make it 14-12. This, after Narra busted up the right hand side of the field for 25 yards to continue the drive and get the ball past midfield.

But it was the defense of Mayville that stopped Redskins’ running back John Northrup at the goal line to prevent the two-point tying score and secure the win.

The Wildcats had to play with three missing starters, two due to injuries.

Senior Mark Lieber put the load on his back for the Wildcats and led the team to victory with 152 all-purpose yards (111 yards rushing on 22 carries and three catches for 41 yards) along with two touchdowns.

Senior Jake Simpson was the defensive catalyst with nine tackles and two sacks at key moments in the game to keep Sandusky from continuing drives.

Lieber was also a force at linebacker with eight tackles.

Wildcat junior Nathan Richardson subbed in at quarterback after Mayville starter Justin Lugowski was unable to play due to a knee injury.

Richardson finished the game with 14 yards rushing and 41 yards passing (all to Lieber).

But his presence was key in handoffs, as Mayville pounded the ball on the ground with nearly 40 carries and just six passes.

Things started off well for the Wildcats (1-1, 1-0 GTE) as they marched down the field on their first possession. Lieber swung around the right side and looked like he would be able to score before being stripped of the ball at the 19-yard line.

Sandusky (0-2, 0-1) didn’t fare much better as sophomore quarterback Jordan Katt was picked off at the 41-yard line a few plays later on third down by Mayville’s Dylan Schenk.

That set up the first Mayville score with 3:43 left in the first.

Richardson was able to hand the ball off to Lieber as he made a move up the left side. Once past the line of scrimmage, he cut back to the right and walked in for the score.

Sandusky was poised for a tying score, yet was stopped in the early part of the second quarter on a long third down play by Simpson, as he sacked Katt for a six-yard loss.

But the Redskins regrouped and, with 3:45 left in the half, scored on the ground as John Northrup (17-102) rushed from six yards out for the score.

The kick was no good, leaving the halftime score in favor of the Wildcats, 7-6.

For all the damage Simpson was causing in the middle of the line for Sandusky, they seemed to solve that in the third as Northrup, along with fellow running back and younger brother Clint, carried for a combined total of 139 yards on 28 carries.

But Mayville may have found the best defense was ball control as they held their first possession for over five minutes in the third quarter, culminating with Lieber’s second touchdown of the night – a three-yard plunge off tackle.

From there, Mayville was able to keep the Redskins at bay.

With under three minutes to go, they attempted to run the clock down, including running the ball on fourth down, which led to a turnover on downs, giving Sandusky the final drive that would lead to a score, but not a tying try.