RHS drops to 0-2 in GNC, 2-2 overall
STAR JOURNAL REPORT
Close didn’t count in the win column Friday night when Rhinelander High School’s varsity football team lost its Great Northern Conference matchup to Merrill, 15-12, at Mike Webster Stadium.
The Bluejays scored first with 6:49 to play in the first quarter on a two-yard touchdown run by Braeden Dorn and added an extra point for a 7-0 lead.
The Hodags got on the scoreboard with 3:34 left in the opening quarter on a 17-yard touchdown run by Colton Krueger. Merrill remained in front at 7-6 after the extra point failed.
The Bluejays extended their lead with 2:31 left before halftime on a two-yard touchdown run by Zach Mootz. A subsequent two-point conversion gave Merrill a 15-6 lead at intermission.
RHS’s final touchdown came with 4:51 left in the fourth quarter when Logan Freund scored on a 5-yard run. The Bluejays remained in front at 15-12 when the two-point conversion failed.
Merrill outgained RHS in total offense, 250-234. Both teams recorded most of their yardage on the ground with the Bluejays having 224 rushing yards, compared to 145 for the Hodags.
Dorn led Merrill’s ground game with 94 yards on 16 carries and Mootz added 73 yards on 15 carries. Freund ended up with 99 yards rushing on 17 carries for the Hodags with Krueger tallying 48 yards on the ground with eight carries.
Freund completed nine of 28 passes for 89 yards. Merrill recorded only 24 passing yards with four completions by Mootz.
The loss dropped the Hodags’ season record to 0-2 in GNC play and 2-2 overall. RHS will seek its first conference victory of the season next Friday at Lakeland Union High School.
Merrill 15, Hodags 12
Merrill 7 8 0 0 – 15
Hodags 6 0 0 6 – 12