Football Rhyme 2003: Rumbli', Bumblin' and Stumblin'!
by Coach Steve Lyga
With the 2003 season upon us,
there’s the anticipation of a great year.
A number of returning starters are back,
but is the leadership really here?
This should be a team of upper class men,
and I hope they’ll all come out and play.
The other coaches and I had visions of platooning;
Of players only starting one way!
Some of those players didn’t come out...,
they apparently had better things to do.
We were forced to make adjustments,
the remaining players had to come through.
For a football team to do well it seems,
summer weight lifting has to be part of the call.
But very few athletes showed up this summer,
to try to make our team better this fall.
Both of last years quarterbacks were back,
another shot to start was given to each.
They both had positive aspects to contribute,
other things we’ll have to teach.
In our offensive line, Bjorke, Jensen, and Serjogins,
are back filling spots.
We’ve got newcomers Prieur and Litscher at a guard,
at center we’ll play Doug Ratz.
In our backfield we’ve got some talent...,
Duellman and Lorenz are an impressive pair.
Abts and Baures will also run hard.
We could stick Williams and Benson back there.
Our scrimmage this year was at Osseo-Fairchild,
with Arcadia and Spring Valley too.
We held our own and learned a lot,
with our 15 member “skeleton crew”.
A road trip to start the season was in store,
North to Plum City we did go.
This team always gives us a heck-uva battle,
a tough non-conference foe.
Although we out gained them by 2 to1 in yards,
we only won the game by 8 (21-13).
Four fumbles lost and three touchdown passes dropped,
but we finally sealed our fate.
With a total of 300 yards rushing,
our backfield was second to none.
Duellman and Lorenz were both speed and power,
all rolled into one.
Next on the docket was Lanesboro, Minnesota,
fresh off of their LaCrescent win.
A school switching over to 9 man football,
to lose this one would almost be a sin.
The Pirates held the Burros to 50 yards in the half,
but faltered on a hook and ladder play.
Besides some mistakes, a 15 to 0 score at the half,
let’s put this team away.
Lanesboro came out at half and powered the ball,
for two T.D.s and an extra point try.
Two minutes left, we drive to the 6,
a penalty and dropped touchdown pass left us dry!
We really let this one slip away,
3 fumbles, a missed field goal, and dropped pass.
Two bad snaps on field goal and extra point kicks,
and in overtime (22-21) we didn’t last.
A first half battle with the Lincoln Hornets,
as they came out and gave us a scare.
But at the end of the game,
a solid 35-14 Dairyland Conference victory was there.
Lorenz showed us some breakaway speed,
Duellman pounded the ball.
The offensive line was also coming together just fine,
300 yards rushing in all.
Our neighbors to the North would drift down stream,
with a Dairyland upset in mind.
The Pirate defense stepped it up again,
only 100 yards in 3 quarters would Alma find.
The defense led by Bjorke, Stanton, Platteter & Co.,
are playing their best game of the year.
Aaron Jensen picked off a pass and rumbled 45 yards,
he got an ice shower by his peers.
A 36-12 victory over Alma kept our record at 2-0,
on pace for our “Dairyland Storm”.
Over 300 yards in rushing, but again some fumbles,
we need more poise and form.
A new co-op is in town, Indee and Gilmanton joined,
to keep an Indee’s tradition alive.
It rained all day and into the night,
“the lights went out” before our first drive.
A delayed start to the Indee’s homecoming game,
they hung with us through the first half.
A somewhat “inspirational speech” at the intermission,
the defense adjusted their craft.
Indee gained a miserable negative 16 yards,
after the halftime break.
Long TD passes to Williams and Lisowski,
Hermann’s option had some good fakes.
Another 300 yard rushing night,
and only one fumble was lost.
A 52-24 Pirate victory, but on the first play,
running back Nick Lorenz it had cost.
With a running back short, we faced Eleva- Strum,
a team with power and speed.
A tie game at the half, a great game so far,
but mistakes would make us concede.
A bad punt snap followed by a dropped pass,
an uncovered receiver put us behind.
A couple of Pirate 4th downs came up just short,
the strength we just couldn’t find.
Three more fumbles lost in the 4th quarter alone,
gave the Cards a lot of breathing room.
By the end of it all, a 41-16 loss,
our homecoming locker room filled with gloom.
We’re still 3 and 1, we can get back into first,
if a Melrose-Mindoro upset is made.
But 3 fumbles in the 1st quarter alone cost us 20 points,
the championship dream did fade.
A solid defensive hit by Baures and Williams,
and Mel-Min coughed up the ball to us.
Two scores by the Pirates, and a 14-20 score
made the Melrose-Mindoro coaches cuss.
We’re back in this game, let’s get to the half,
we’ll regroup and win this game.
But the loss of Jake Abts at a D-back spot,
another Mel-Min touchdown in that frame.
Down 28-14 to start the 2nd half,
Mel-Min fumbled the kick, then returned it for a quick score.
The defense played better, only 89 yards in the half,
a 34-20 loss left us pretty sore.
The Norsemen of Whitehall then sailed into town,
we just had to topple their ship.
The defense again rose to the challenge,
they were focused and ready to hit.
Only one hundred yards were surrendered that night,
as for first downs, we gave up just 5.
Benson had a 35 yard interception return,
Bushman and Schmidtknecht kept the “D” alive.
A 300 yard rushing performance,
the offensive line and Jordon Duellman leading the way.
Nick Lorenz was back in the backfield, but pretty rusty,
a 34-6 win really made my day.
It’s always a pleasure to beat my old hometown,
whether it’s at C-FC or up there.
I always challenge the players to step it up,
for me and the “missing chair”.
We were now 4 and 2 in Dairyland play,
another win would give us third place.
The Blair-Taylor Wildcats have an identical record,
this game would be quite a race.
Both of the teams were unstoppable in the 1st half,
we played to a 22-22 draw.
Two touchdowns called back just before half,
and another dropped TD pass also a flaw.
Quickly exchanging touchdowns after halftime,
the Pirates could have put the game away.
But another fumble lost on the B-T 13 yard line,
gave the Wildcats another chance to play.
A final Blair-Taylor Wildcat drive,
a referee somehow gets knocked to the ground.
A couple of broken ribs, with just minutes left,
he finished the game before leaving town.
A huge defensive stop, finally shut down the Wildcats
on the Pirate eighteen.
A couple of kneel downs later,
the post game “bomb drop” was the final scene. (43-36)
Our play-off run was pretty short,
as north to Fall Creek we would go.
The strongest team we would see all year,
and the rain would make us slow.
A pretty solid first quarter,
as our defense held them to just over 60 yards and one score.
But our miscues like fumbles, interceptions, and missed blocks,
washed our ship ashore.
The Fall Creek Crickets have a solid program,
they’ll go a ways in play-offs this year.
They’re pretty fast, they have a good defense,
and from turnovers, they stay clear.
A six and three season isn’t too bad,
another 3rd place finish is locked away.
Our expectations were higher but what the heck,
it’s “pride” we will always display.
A season goal was to rush for 300 yards a game this year,
at 280 yards we came up short.
But Jordon Duellman, gained over 1200 yards,
in his final year of this sport.
The offensive line came together real well,
our backs gained over 2500 yards.
Perhaps, if we could have hung onto the ball,
“undefeated” would have been in the cards.
The Pirates also scored nearly 300 points this season,
that is no small feat.
But we gave up an uncharacteristic 202 points,
our defensive goal we didn’t meet.
We did intercept 16 passes this (9 game) season,
our offense gave away just three.
Fumbles really hurt us bad,
in nine games we dropped the ball forty-three (43).
We thank the parents for the great support,
for the food and drinks after each game.
But also for being there for us through it all,
as our opponents we tried to tame.
As for the seniors who stuck it out,
we won 28 games and lost a total of thirteen (13).
A first, second, fourth, and a third place finish,
they’ve made “the cycle” it seems.
Thanks to the managers, Alex, Daryl, and Jesse,
for being there for us each game.
We couldn’t get by without you,
each of you is in our football hall of fame.
Good luck to the seniors as your paths you must follow,
remember the times on the field.
Go after whatever you desire with a passion,
never keep your dreams concealed.
With this season over and all is said and done,
The Pirates’ football tradition is true to form.
We lost some of our battles, but came out ahead.
We survived our “Dairyland Storm”.