East Troy High School defensive lineman Braedon Bakken stops the run during the Aug. 23 season opener against Clinton. The football team is undefeated heading into Friday night’s home game against McFarland. Kickoff is 7 p.m. (Eric Kramer photo)

Football team 3-0 heading into tonight’s game

By Dan Truttschel

Correspondent

The East Troy High School football team unleashed an aerial assault last Friday night.

And that plan certainly paid huge dividends.

East Troy found the end zone on its very first offensive play and held off host Big Foot for a hard-fought 21-14 Rock Valley Conference victory Sept. 6 to improve to 3-0.

“Friday was a good performance by our players,” East Troy coach Jeff Crandall said. “We had to battle all game with Big Foot, and we made enough plays to come out with the win at the end.

“We were impressed with Big Foot and some of the speed they had on the field. We learned a bunch about ourselves throughout the game and were challenged in new ways by them.”

East Troy quarterback Mac Dudkiewicz, who completed 10-of-23 passes for 302 yards, found Skyler Matson on an 80-yard scoring strike to give the Trojans a 7-0 lead.

Both Skyler and his brother, Jordan, were on the same side of the formation, Crandall said, and Dudkiewicz found Skyler for an explosive play right out of the chute.

“Jordan ended up getting doubled, Skyler ran a fly route, Mac hit Skyler in stride, and he was able to out-run the ‘D’ and score,” Crandall said.

One quarter later, Jordan Matson got into the act, this time on a 95-yard touchdown pass from Dudkiewicz.

The touchdown was aided by a perfect blitz pickup by the offensive line and a big block downfield by Zach Wendorf, Crandall said.

“Big Foot brought a couple guys on a blitz, (and) our o-line picked it up well,” he said. “Jordan adjusted his route as Mac moved in the pocket. Jordan used his speed to out-run most of Big Foot’s ‘D.’”

Jordan Matson finished the night with five catches for 150 yards, while Skyler Matson caught two passes for 99. Silas Heimos added three receptions for 53 yards.

Dudkiewicz and the East Troy receivers continue to work well together, Crandall said.

“Mac and our receivers have been working hard at building chemistry on the field,” he said. “It is really starting to show. Our o-line has done a good job of pass protecting and giving Mac the time he needs to get the ball out.”

The teams exchanged touchdowns from there, as Big Foot’s Owen Martin scored on a 6-yard run, followed by another scoring strike from Dudkiewicz to Skyler Matson in the third quarter, this time a 19 yarder, that rebuilt the Trojans’ lead back to 14 points at 21-7.

Rebounding from Big Foot’s score at the end of the first half was a key moment in the game, Crandall said.

“It was big for us to answer,” he said. “When you have a 14-point lead, it is a bit more comfortable on how you call the game. It also showed us how competitive our guys are. We like to see them compete like that.”

Big Foot added one final touchdown in the third quarter on a 7-yard run by Cole Vance. Neither team scored in the fourth quarter, as the Trojans held on for the win.

East Troy’s Connor Paulin rushed 23 times for 104 yards to lead the running backs. Defensive leaders were Zach Burke with 16 tackles, Konnor Weber with 13, Brady Barels with 12 and Victor Chapman with eight.

Next up for the Trojans is a 7 p.m. home contest tonight against McFarland. The Spartans enter the game at 1-2 after a 20-17 victory over Beloit Turner last week.

“McFarland is a well-coached team,” Crandall said. “They are usually sound in their scheme and player assignments. They look the same this year. We will need to correct some errors we made last week and be ready to play on Friday.”

 
 

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