In the end WL gets the win

Norv and Mary Coblentz · Wednesday, September 20, 2017
It didn't feel much like a win, but the record shows that the West Liberty football team beat Northeast at Goose Lake 52-50 Sept. 15 to improve their season record to 3-1 and their district record to 2-0.

"You have games like that," West Liberty Head Coach Jason Iske said. "Sometimes it's good just to come out with a win when things go that way.

The Comets got off to a fine start, with nine minutes left in the game they held a 46-22 lead over the Rebels.

But Northeast gave West Liberty a run for the money in the final moments, resulting in a Comet win of only 50-52.

”Offense was fine. As long as we weren't backing ourselves up with penalties, we could move the ball. To be honest with you, I didn't think our defense played too bad,” said Coach Iske.

"But when you give a quarterback like that time to scramble, they'll find somebody open eventually. That's pretty much what happened,” he added.

Comet offense has really been something else this season. In the last four games the Comets have scored a combined 168 points.

That’s 25 different touchdowns thanks to Justis Dengler, Seth Feldman, Jackson Gingerich, Tanner Iske, Joe Kelly, A.J. Lenz, Bryce Esmoil, Gabriel Melendez and Coy Ruess.

While they dropped their first game against West Branch, West Liberty has now gone on a three game win streak taking down Highland, Mid-Prairie and Northeast.

Hopefully they can cary that momentum back home Friday, Sept. 22, when they take on Anamosa for homecoming.

“We definitely want to keep the train rolling. It's too bad when you win a game and you still have a sour taste in your mouth, but winning ugly is better than losing pretty,” said Coach Iske.

First Half

Bryce Esmoil kicked off to start the game. The ball was returned by the Rebels to the 19. Michael Hartman and Eli Gingerich got the stop.

A six-yard run stopped by A.J. Lenz, and another run, stopped by Coy Ruess, made it first down.

A run stopped by Jackson Gingerich and another run stopped by Lenz and Hartman, made it third down and two yards. The Rebels passed for a touchdown.

On Northeast's PAT two-point try, the Comets were called for holding. The Rebels were successful on their second try, and took an 8-0 lead.

The Rebels recovered their onside kick at the West Liberty 42. A run, stopped by Cobain Polman, made it second and nine.

J. Gingerich got a tackle for loss. The Rebels had a penalty, but the Comets declined it for a third down and 12.

Spencer Daufeldt and Polman got a big stop bringing up fourth down and long. Justis Dengler and Lenz were back for the punt, but it went out of bounds.

The West Liberty drive started at the 32-yard line. There was a fumble on the snap. The Comets recovered it for a five-yard loss.

Seth Feldman made a first down with a keeper at the Northeast 37. Joe Kelly ran for a first down to the 25. The Rebels intercepted the ball and appeared to make a touchdown, but a personal foul on the Rebels negated the touchdown and the interception.

The personal foul call on the Rebels brought up first and goal at the 10. Feldman handed the ball off to Kelly for a yard. Kelly got the ball again and did an end run for a touchdown. With 6:31 to go in the quarter. Esmoil's PAT kick was good for a 7-8 score.

Cobain Polman got a sack to push the Rebels to second and 13. With Nathan Schemmel on pass coverage, the Rebels threw an incomplete pass bringing up third and 13. Surprisingly, the Rebels punted on third and long. A personal foul was called on the Comets

The Comets had the ball with a first down at the West Liberty 41. Kelly got the handoff and gained big yards for a first down at the 18.

The Rebels took a time out. Tanner Iske was tackled for a loss, then a short pass to Justis Dengler brought up third down and six.

Feldman ran a keeper and was just short of the end zone. A pass to Dengler got the Comets the touchdown. Esmoil's PAT kick was good. With 3:36 left on the clock, the Comets led the Rebelas 14-8.

Esmoil kicked the ball, and there was a flurry of flags. Northeast was called for a block in the back and holding.

The Comets had a personal foul. When the dust settled and the Rebels had a running play, it was second and one at the 19.

An incomplete pass and an illegal procedure call on West Liberty made it third and one. The Rebels ran for a first down. The stop was made by Lenz and J. Gingerich.

The Rebels completed a pass, and Michael Hartman made the tackle. The Rebels got a first down at the 36, then Polman got a sack bringing up second down and 15.

Polman and Esmoil got a tackle for loss for third and 18. Northeast let the clock run down to halftime.

Second Half

The Rebels kicked off to start the third quarter. Lenz returned the ball to the West Liberty 47. Feldman handed the ball off to Kelly who ran for a first down at the Northeast 38.

Coy Ruess got the handoff and gained a yard. On the next carry, the ball was fumbled, and the Comets recored it bringing up third down and short at the 30.

An incomplete pass brought up fourth down. Kelly ran for a first down at the 22. Feldman scored a touchdown on a keeper. Esmoil’s PAT kick was good for a 40-14 score with 10:18 on the clock.

Esmoil’s kickoff was returned to the 21. Holding was called on the Rebels pushing them back to the 10.

Lenz stopped a running play, the Rebels threw an incomplete pass, Northeast got a first down with Ruess, Lenz and J. Gingerich getting credit for the tackle. The Rebels fumbled the ball, and Melendez made the recovery.

West Liberty started their drive at the Northeast 43. A run by Melendez, a pass to E. Gingerich, and a keeper by Feldman brought up fourth down and five.

The Comets called a time out. Feldman connect with Dengler for a first down. Kelly gained six yards on the ground. The Comets were sacked then had two delay of game penalties bringing up third down and 16 at the 31.

The Rebels were called twice for holding. The Comets declined one bringing up third down and 11. Feldman handed off the ball to Kelly who ran for a first down at the 16.

A series of broken plays and penalties for the Comets led to a field goal attempt. The try missed.

The Rebels’ next drive resulted in a touchdown and PAT two-point conversion run as the fourth quarter began. With 11:47 left in the game, The Comets had a 40-22 lead.

Kelly and Iske were back to receive the Rebels’ kickoff, but Beaver got the ball and ran to the 45. An incomplete pass brought up second and 10 at the 45.

Kelly got the handoff, then Iske got a first down at the 28. A pass was incomplete and was ruled a lateral pass and fumble. The Rebels recovered the ball.

The Rebels turned the ball over on downs on their next drive. The Comets scored a fast touchdown at the 9:41 mark. Esmoil’s PAT kick was good, and the score was 46-22 with 9:41 on the clock.

Esmoil kicked off, and the ball went out of bounds. Northeast began their drive at the 35. They passed, and the pay was covered by Melendez. The Rebels got a first down at the 49.

The Rebels ran the ball, and Eben Bierman and J. Gingerich got the stop. The Rebels were second down and five at the West Liberty 45.

The Rebels continued to move the ball with tackles by Ruess and Elias Rocha. On third and three at the West Liberty 41. The Rebels got a first down at the 35 with a pass play.

Despite good defense by Daufeldt and Schemmel, the Rebels got a first down at the 20. With 4:50 left in the game, the Rebels scored a touchdown. They went for and got the two-point conversion for a 46-30 score.

After the Northeast kickoff, the Comets scored quickly. The kickoff was returned to the West Liberty 45. Feldman ran a keeper to the 26 for another first down.

Feldman connected with J. Gingerich in the end zone for a 52-36 score. The Comets’ two-point conversion try was no good.

West Liberty’s kickoff was returned for a touchdown. The two-point try was no good.

The Rebels’ kickoff hit a West Liberty player, and Northeast recovered the ball for a first down at the 49. A pass scored another Northeast touchdown.

The Comets tipped the ball, foiling the Rebels’ two point try for PAT. With 4:06 on the clock, the Comets led by 10 points, 52-42.

Like a recurring bad dream, the Rebels’ kickoff hit a West Liberty player for a first down and 10 at the 49. Five plays later, the Rebels scored another touchdown.

This time the PAT was good and the score was 52-50 with 2:57 to go. with the Comets still held on to the lead.

Kelly returned the Northeast kickoff. West Liberty ran some time off the clock, then Feldman got a first down at the 19 with 1:18 to go.

Northeast took their final time out with 56 seconds to go. The Comets took a knee a couple of times an allowed the clock to wind down.

“We were honestly just playing our basic (game),” Northeast Head Coach Jared Block said. “We weren't consistent enough to win a football game. I'm very proud of our offensive line tonight.”
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