Things weren't looking good for New Berlin Eisenhower when Wauwatosa West took a two-touchdown lead going into the fourth quarter Friday night.
Was Lions coach Jeff Setz worried?
"Absolutely," he said. "We've been kind of beaten down both mentally and physically against the last three teams we've played (outscored 132-21). We've gotten beaten physically and mentally.
"I had a sick feeling. I thought they might throw in the towel."
Two late scores
But the Lions rallied for two fourth-quarter scores to tie the game and then win it in overtime, 35-28.
It was senior running back/linebacker Steve Harrell who led the comeback, Setz said.
"They really battled back, especially Steve Harrell. Offensively and defensively. He got us back in the and helped us win in overtime."
West led 21-14 at intermission, but added a touchdown in the third quarter to take a 28-14 lead into the final period.
But from then on, it was all the Lions, who capped off three drives with short touchdown runs.
First Harrell scored on a 1-yard run at the 11:56 mark to cut the lead to 28-21. Then with 1:59 left in the game, quarterback Sam Carey ran in a 1-yard touchdown to tie the game at 28-28 and force and overtime.
The Lions got the ball first and Ganzke eventually scored on a 3-yard run and Nathan Erickson's fifth extra point of the night gave the Lions a 35-28 lead.
West got the ball back, but the Eisenhower defense stopped a fourth-down run from the 2-yard line to win the game, getting the homecoming weekend off to a great start.
"There was a big crowd and a lot of homecoming activities planned for after the game," Setz said. "It was a nice feeling."
The game started out well for the Lions has they jumped to a 14-0 lead.
Nick Taylor opened the scoring with a 35-yard touchdown run and Erickson kicked the point after for a 7-0 lead at 7:20 of the first quarter.
Then Ganzke ran in a 9-yard touchdown with 4:27 seconds left in the first quarter for a 14-0 advantage.
West battles back
But then Tosa West got on the board with 24 seconds left in the period when Truman Tyson ran for a 2-yard score. Zach Veit booted the PAT to cut the lead in half, 14-7.
But the Trojans then took over the second period with two scores and a 21-14 lead at halftime.
With 8:36 in the second quarter Rayvon Bartelt Jr. tossed a 60-yard touchdown pass to wide receiver Develyn Ferguson to tie the game. Three minutes later West running back Demaris Purifoy raced 80 yards for a score to end the first half.
West scored the only third-quarter touchdown at the five-minute mark when Tyson took in his second score on a 14-yard run for a 28-14 lead.
Gaining on the ground
Most of the action took place on the ground, as the Lions ran for 292 and the Trojans for 335 yards.
Harrell ran for 141 yards on 27 carries (5.2 average) and Taylor added 107 on 15 carries (7.1) to lead Eisenhower.
West's Purifoy was the leading ballcarrier with 208 yards on 19 carries (10.2) while Greg Lewis ran for 115 yards on 16 carries (7.2). Ferguson caught two passes for 71 yards (35.5), as the passing games did very little.
Ganzke (15) and Harell led (10) led the defense with 25 tackles between the two of them. John Mcarthur and Nick Rastas each recovered a fumble.
Eisenhower (1-3, 2-4) now faces Pius XI (1-3, 3-3) at 1 p.m. Oct. 5 at Wisconsin Lutheran College Stadium and Tosa West (1-3, 3-3) is at home against Greendale (4-0, 6-0).
"A lot of the credit goes to our players," Setz said. "They had an opportunity and they did something with it. We have some tremendous leaders on this team."
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