11/10/2017 11:26:00 AM CFHS football falls one game short of state
by Mike Dalton
The 2017 Cannon Falls Bomber football team finished the season as Section 4AAA runners-up, after losing 42-12 to St. Croix Lutheran in the section finals Friday.
St. Croix entered the game as the #1 ranked team in the state, and the Crusaders scored the game's first six touchdowns.
Two seniors scored for Cannon Falls, Hayden strain from 14 yards out in the 3rd quarter, and Gage Hildebrandt from six yards out in the 4th.
Hildebrandt was Cannon's leading rusher, gaining 57 yards on 11 carries. Jovan Ripley had 36 rushing yards, Strain and Trenton Matthies each 23 yards, and Chase Reber 15 yards.
Reber was seven of 14 passing for 83 yards. Straini and Ripley each caught three passes, and Hildebrandt had one reception.
Strain had 11 tackles, Mason Duden had seven, Ripley and Reber five each, Matthew Katterjohn and Hildebrandt four apiece, Isaac Banks three, and Nick Bultena two. Reber had a fumble recovery.
"St. Croix's power offense was tough to stop, and they jumped out to an early lead," coach Dan Meyers said. "We weren't able to get big plays when we needed them. St. Croix has an excellent offensive line and run the option as well as anyone; they are definitely contenders to win the state championship.
"Our guys were commmitted to improving every day, and we played our best football at the end of the season. The group of seniors showed great leadership; they fought through adversity and injuries and ended the season with an awesome playoff run that they can be proud of. We also have lots of young talent on this team, with many juniors and seniors who were big contributors all year."
The Bombers finished the 2017 season with a 4-6 record, with two of those wins coming in postseason.