Not only did the Muskie senior football team get hurt on the scoreboard, they also were banged up physically in a lopsided 46-6 loss to Wadena, Mn. there Friday night.
And that barrage of bumps and bruises will make gearing up for this Friday afternoon’s NorWOSSA showdown against the host Dryden Eagles much more difficult.
Added to the “out indefinitely” list is lineman Andrew Wiersema, gone for what looks like the rest of the season with a possible broken leg.
Meanwhile, linemen Eric Sedgwick, Joe Sletmoen, and Barry Rodrigues, along with starting running back Scott Witherspoon, continue to nurse various injuries.
Muskie head coach Bob Swing said this is the worst rash of injuries his team has suffered in recent memory—and it couldn’t have come at a worse time with the black-and-gold already thin at several positions.
And because of those injuries, the Muskies were beaten physically on both sides of the ball by a very good Wadena team.
“We were slaughtered . . . they were that good,” said Swing, whose team dropped to 3-2 overall this season (2-0 in NorWOSSA play). “I think they were the perfect opponent and I think it will definitely help us over time.
“I have never seen us whooped like that before since I’ve been here that I can remember,” he added. “It was a real eye-opener.”
“They took it to us and they hit us hard,” agreed Muskie defensive co-ordinator Brent DeBenedet. “But we should show up and play more physical against Dryden.”
“This game gives us a measure to try to achieve where [Wadena] is at and how we can get there if we continue to work hard,” he added.
Wadena head coach Terry Karger said he was sympathetic with the Muskies’ injury woes.
“We didn’t know what to expect from them, not at all. All we saw of them was the tape from the International Falls game,” said Karger, whose team scored early—and often—against the outmanned Muskies.
“But from what I hear, they had a lot of injuries,” he added.
Matt Blowers opened the scoring midway through the first quarter on a 10-yard touchdown run, then Jeremy Cossitt added a three-yard burst a few minutes later for a 14-0 lead.
Then the key play for Wadena came with just two seconds left in the opening quarter when quarterback Matt Schiller hooked up with Tyler Currie on a 24-yard pass play for a 20-0 lead (the extra point was blocked).
Currie added touchdown runs of 11 and 24 yards in the second quarter for a 34-0 lead at halftime.
Lowers scored his second touchdown of the game in the third quarter with a 65-yard run, then Kyle Lehmkuhl scampered 41 yards less than two minutes later as Wadena opened up a 46-0 bulge (both those extra points were blocked).
The Muskies finally broke the Wadena goose egg when quarterback Gary Wager slid into the end zone from two yards out with 1:15 to play in the game.
The Muskie offence, which struggled at times Friday night, received a big game from running back David Gemmell, who did an admirable job replacing Witherspoon.
Still, the Muskies continue to struggle against American teams, especially on offence, scoring just six points in two games against opponents from south of the border.
On defence, after yielding 34 points in the first half, the black-and-gold did limit Wadena to just 12 points in the second.
In fact, Swing said he didn’t feel the Muskie defence played all that bad—despite surrendering 46 points. He said they will work on getting the players in the proper position to make plays.
“Obviously we did not have people in the right spot on certain plays,” he remarked.