NICOLLET- "The thrill of victory. The agony of defeat."
That was the phrase used by ABC for its "Wide World of Sports" program in the 1970's. Nicollet understands that phrase well after Mountain Lake Area defeated Nicollet 53-28 Friday night for the Section 2, nine-man football championship.
MLA outscored Nicollet 21-12 in the fourth quarter to ensure the win.
Staff photo by Steve Muscatello
Nicollet’s Evan Guffey (24) jumps to make a catch during the Raiders’ loss to Mountain Lake in the Section 2A Championship game Friday in Nicollet. Guffey would go on to score on the play.
Mountain Lake Area scored first on a 20-yard pass from quarterback Carter Kirk to Eric Wenner. Kirk ran the ball in for the two-point conversion.
In the second quarter, Andrew Hempeck scored at 11:56 on a one-yard run. Kirk ran the ball in for the two point conversion, and MLA led 16-0.
Nicollet scored its first touchdown on a 44-yard pass from Dalton Elliott to Kenny Fischer at 8:18 of the second quarter. Elliott tossed the ball to Jay Hendrycks for the two-point conversion to make the score 16-8.
Kirk countered with a 24-yard run of his own at 5:10. Kirk threw the ball to a teammate to make it 24-8 MLA at halftime.
Elliott closed the gap at 7:27 of the third quarter when he ran two yards into the end zone for the Raiders' second score. Elliott passed to Matt Fischer for the two-point conversion.
Hempeck answered with a 44-yard run at 2:09. MLA scored a two-point conversion to make it 32-16 and that was the score at the end of three quarters.
Hempeck opened the fourth quarter scoring with a four-yard run at 11:17. He also ran the ball in for the two-point PAT.
Dalton Elliott found Evan Guffey at 10:44 of the fourth quarter with a 49-yard touchdown pass. Elliott's pass to Matt Fischer failed, and the score was 40-22 in favor of MLA.
At 10:30, Kirk scored on a four-yard run. Kirk tried for the two-point conversion on a pass to Wenner, but it failed.
Hempeck scored the Wolverines' final touchdown of the night on an eight-yard run at 7:25. Caleb Bargen kicked the extra point for MLA, making the score 53-22.
Elliott threw a 10-yard pass to Evan Guffy almost four minutes left in the game. Lucas Gens tried to run the ball in for the two-point conversion, but he was unsuccessful.
"We didn't quit. We got beat by a good football team, and it's quite an accomplishment to finish 10-1," Raiders coach Tom Murphy said.