Clear Lake’s football program reached the 500 win mark as the 2013 Lions toppled Forest City on the road, 34-7, Friday night.
The game was actually much closer than the final score indicated.
The two teams were scoreless after one quarter. But the Lions scored early in the second, moving the ball 60-yards on seven plays for a touchdown. Pete Swenson pounded the ball up the middle for a score. Logan Kracht’s kick was good for a 7-0 lead that would stand until halftime.
Just as they did in the first game of the season, the Lions appeared to have made adjustments which put them in control in the second half. They took more than eight-minutes to grind out a 69-yard scoring drive which moved the score to 14-0. Chase Lester got the score on a six-yard pass from Brock Adams.
A 65-yard touchdown pass from Tanner Thompson to Grant Lehmann gave the Indians some life. All of a sudden the score was 14-7 and the possibility of upsetting the Lions for the second time in as many years was beginning to look like it could happen. Momentum had clearly swung to the home team when they kicked off with little more than a quarter to play.
The Indian defense tackled quarterback Brock Adams for a loss on first down and set the Lions back again on third and nine, forcing a punt.
The next play was the game-changer.
A punt deep in Forest City territory was bobbled and the Lions’ Ernie Mizsewski scooped the ball up on the bounce at the 10-yard line and took the ball into the end zone untouched. The Lions stretched the lead to 21-7 with another Kracht kick.
The miscue seemed to take the wind out of the Indians’ sails. Meanwhile, the Lions poured it on.
A five-yard pass to Carter Hand put the Lions up 28-7 with 7:27 to play and Alex Gonzalez tacked on another score inside of four-minutes to go for the final 34-7.
Head Coach Fred Wieck was underwhelmed by the win.
“We just have to get better every week and we have another non-district game this week to do that,” said Wieck. “The defense did a good job all night, but it was hard to get the offense rolling.” The coach noted he was pleased with the Lions’ ball control in the second half, but felt the offense still did not put together a great drive.
The Lion defense limited the Indians to just nine yards on the ground. The squad was padded by MaKean Bang’s eight tackles, three of them solo. Connor Nosbisch sacked Forest City quarterback Tanner Thompson twice and finished with a total of six tackles in the game. Other defensive leaders included Pete Swenson and Mitchell Keeran, with five tackles apiece; Chase Lester, Zach Merfeld, Ernie Miszewski and Rowdy Yates, each with four; and T.J. Hauser and Zach Zwiefel each with three tackles. Keeran and Carter Garrington each had two solo sacks.
Offensively, Brock Adams threw for 134-yards in the game. He was 8-11 passing. Alex Webb caught one pass for 52-yards and Lester caught three for 42-yards. Nosbisch took two passes for 26-yards and Carter Hand had one for four-yards.
Hand was the leading ground-gainer for Clear Lake, carrying 15 times for 61-yards. Adams rushes six times for 28; Chandler Diercks carried five times for 26-yards and Lester and Peter Swenson each finished with 23-yards on the ground on eight and 10 totes respectively.
This week the Lions celebrate Homecoming by hosting Crestwood in a 7:30 p.m. game. Crestwood defeated Osage, 35-25 in their opener, then fell to New Hampton, 28-7, last week.