Bonduel drops thriller to Peshtigo

Last second field goal falls just short
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Leader photo by Morgan Rode Riddik Bohm (1) rushed for 249 yards and three touchdowns to lead Bonduel in a Friday night showdown with Peshtigo in Bonduel.

While Friday night’s showdown between Bonduel and Peshtigo was labeled as a week two matchup, the clash felt more like a playoff game.

In the end, the visiting Bulldogs claimed a 28-26 victory as a last-second Bonduel field goal fell short.

Bonduel received the opening kickoff and marched right down the field to grab an early lead. Riddik Bohm and Isaac Boldt shared carries to lead the rushing game while quarterback Parker Bohm connected with wide receiver Isaac Garside on a pair of passes.

After the Bears converted two third downs, Riddik Bohm capped the drive with a touchdown run.

Bonduel’s defense carried the early momentum onto the field, and on the Bulldogs’ first play from scrimmage, forced and recovered a fumble to get the ball right back.

Riddik Bohm busted through the line and sprinted 18 yards to give the Bears their second touchdown in under 30 seconds.

Bonduel’s defense again had its way with Peshtigo on the ensuing drive, forcing a punt.

Starting at its own 15-yard line, Bonduel’s tandem of Boldt and Riddik Bohm again led the team down the field. The Bulldogs defense finally forced the Bears to fourth down and an incomplete pass gave the visitors the ball back.

Peshtigo used a long passing play and several runs to move down the field and get on the scoreboard.

Bonduel looked to regain the momentum on a long run by Riddik Bohm to open its next drive, but Peshtigo’s defense stiffened and eventually picked off a fourth down pass attempt.

The Bulldogs next drive was again jolted by a long passing play before a rushing touchdown capped the drive. After the extra point, Peshtigo held a 15-14 lead.

After forcing Bonduel to punt on its next drive, Peshtigo took advantage of good field position and capped a time-consuming drive with a passing score late in the second quarter. The Bulldogs scored 22 points in the quarter and took an eight-point advantage into halftime.

“We could have went up 21-0 but then we had a penalty before they stopped up on fourth down. Then they hit a good pass and we drop our heads a bit,” Bonduel coach James Westrich said on what changed the momentum in the game. “We got to learn the play the next play and not get down when something bad happens.”

After some halftime adjustments, Bonduel’s defense was put to the test as Peshtigo drove deep into Bears’ territory. Bonduel stopped Peshtigo just short of the first down marker on a fourth down rush attempt to get the ball back.

Boldt and Riddik Bohm again carried the Bears down the field before Isaac Banker broke free for a 25-yard touchdown. A failed two-point conversion left Bonduel with a two-point deficit.

After Bonduel’s defense forced a punt, Garside turned what looked to be a great kick into a highlight reel punt return for a touchdown. A penalty wiped out the play and forced the Bears to start in their own territory though.

Bonduel kept the momentum on its side, converting a fourth down run before Riddik Bohm scored his third touchdown to give the Bears the lead.

Peshtigo responded with a long drive of its own, but on third-and-long, Parker Bohm picked off a pass with just over five minutes left.

As it was trying to work the ball down the field and drain the clock, Bonduel fumbled, giving Peshtigo new life. The visitors took advantage, with Nick Nielson scoring the go-ahead touchdown on a fourth-down play that looked to be going nowhere.

With only 46.5 seconds remaining, Bonduel faced an uphill climb. Garside again came through in the clutch though, returning the kickoff to the Peshtigo 42-yard line.

After a couple of incompletions, Riddik Bohm came through with a first down run before Parker Bohm hit Garside twice to move the ball down to the 10-yard line.

With just a couple ticks remaining, Bonduel trotted out the field goal unit to attempt a game-winning kick. The kick fell just short as the final seconds ran out.

Despite the tough loss, coach Westrich was pleased with the effort the team put forth.

“It hurts to lose, especially when you play that hard. I think our kids played really hard tonight and did a lot of things better from week one to week two,” Westrich said.

Riddik Bohm tallied 249 rushing yards to go along with his three scores. Boldt finished with 60 rushing yards and the Bears accumulated 323 rushing yards as a team.

Bonduel will hope to erase the sting of the loss and use it as motivation when conference play kicks off next week.

“We proved that we are a strong and physical team tonight,” Parker Bohm said. “I’m proud of all our guys tonight, we played tough, we just didn’t come out on top.”

“This game will help our entire team. We never have a losing mentality and with us taking this L, we will be putting in more time and becoming a better team so we don’t lose games this close again,” Garside said.

Peshtigo 0 22 0 6

Bonduel 14 0 6 6

First quarter

B: Riddik Bohm 8-yard run (extra point failed), 8:54

B: Riddik Bohm 18-yard run (Parker Bohm run), 8:30

Second quarter

P: Jerod Jandt 3-yard run (Jandt run), 11:05

P: Jandt 1-yard run (Aiden Bohaczek kick), 7:10

P: Mitchell VanVooren 4-yard pass from Jandt (Bohaczek kick), 30.1

Third quarter

B: Isaac Banker 25-yard run (pass failed), 3:12

Fourth quarter

B: Riddik Bohm 35-yard run (run failed), 10:06

P: Nick Nielson 3-yard run (run failed), 46.5

Records: Peshtigo 2-0; Bonduel 0-2.