Firebirds drop tight finale
By Harry Lipsiea
In a sense, the final game of the season for the Devils Lake football team was a correct snapshot of what the squad showed throughout the entire 2014 campagin.
Facing adversity with a 28-0 deficit early, the Firebirds never back down from its EDC opponent. Despite falling short 34-25 to West Fargo Sheyenne, Devils Lake showed a toughness that has been on display all season long.
“We played hard as always but we dug ourselves a pretty deep hole to start the game,” Jay Schneider, Devils Lake head football coach, told the Journal.
The Mustangs racked up the first 28 points of the game by using a balanced rushing and passing attack. Josh Roehrich, quarterback, found Cole Christensen for two touchdowns while Cole Setter ran for two scores to give the team a four-possession lead.
As expected, the Firebirds didn’t go down without a fight. Bradley Davidson capped off the team’s first scoring drive with a one-yard plunge.
Devils Lake finished out the first half with another successful drive. Led by a number of successful pass plays, the visitors got in the end zone when sophomore signal called Jacob Mertens hooked up Jordan Swanson for a 27-yard touchdown to make the score 28-13 at the half.
Neither team got on the scoreboard in the third as it was a battle for field position. With 3:55 left in the game, Setter scored to give the Mustangs a 34-13 lead.
The Firebirds kept pushing ahead. Mertens completed two passing touchdowns to Swanson, the second after the team recovered the onside kick, for seven and 34 yards, respectively.
Devils Lake, however, was unable to convert the PAT tries and the score remained 34-25. The Firebirds’ final onside kick attempt was unsuccessful and the Mustangs held on to the EDC win.
“Our guys kept battling,” Schneider stated.
Mertens had anothe nice day complete 13-of-29 passes for 221 yards and three touchdowns.
Bradley Davidson ran for 46 yards and a score on 15 carries. Jordan Swanson caught nine passes for 148 yards and three touchdowns.
Koltin Three Irons had 15 tackles to lead the defense.
Look for a wrap-up on the season later this week in the Journal.