Bednarski, Oconomowoc get all of it against Madison West
The fourth quarter, poisoned with a myriad of penalties, late hits and even ejections, nearly overshadowed what kind of evening Casey Bednarski and the Oconomowoc football team had.
OHS and Madison West combined for 247 yards of penalties in the WIAA Division 1, Level 1 football game, but more importantly, Oconomowoc moved on to the next round with a 37-6 victory over the Regents —the first playoff win for the Raccoons since 2001.
"It was a hard-fought game by our kids; those guys haven't gotten beaten like this all season, so I think frustration takes over," Oconomowoc head football coach Ryan McMillen said. "It got sloppy tonight. I thought we could have done a better job finishing this one off in the second quarter, but all night our defense played their tails off. They have some special kids on that team. They've got some nice players, but our guys battled."
Badnarski caught four passes, three for touchdowns, including a 65-yard score on a pass from Canton Larson in the second quarter. His second touchdown catch covered 82 yards before he was on the receiving end of Larson's strike from 47 yards out.
"We worked the personal matchup, and he happened to be the guy in the right spot," McMillen said. "He's been doing that for us all season."
He set a school record with a successful 55-yard field goal early in the third quarter, and he added a 23 and 33 yard field goal thereafter. The 55-yard bomb ranks among the state's 10 longest field-goals of all time.
"He played really well again," said Logan Ballering, who had a fumble recovery and a blocked punt. "He's a great kicker, and that was really cool to see him knock that one through. Hopefully we'll get to watch him on Saturday some day."
Larson got the Raccoons (10-0) on the scoreboard in the first quarter with a touchdown pass to Ricky Shumway, who broke a tackle before getting into the end zone on a 6-yard scoring play early in the first quarter.
Nate De La Bera had 21 carries for 71 yards. Larson rushed for 43 yards, and Bednarski had three carries for 26 yards.
Ballering, Brandon McKandes, Scott Nicholls, Ricky Kuehl and Dalto Dunham all finished with four solo tackles.
On Nov. 1, Oconomowoc hosts Middleton in a Level 2 game beginning at 7 p.m.
"We've got to get back and ready for Middleton," McMillen said. "They took it to us back in 2009 at their place. This time, we've got them at home."
Said Ballering, "We've got something special going with this team. I'm just glad to be a part of it."
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