Created 15-Nov-14
Modified 17-Nov-14
Visitors 16
160 photos
St. Mary's 21, Shanley 7
The Shanley 'Deacons' made it to the North Dakota class 2A State Championship game in Grand Forks. 3 PM kick off in the Alerus Center, so weather wasn't going to be a problem. The Deacon players were waiting for the 9-man Championship game to end. Overlooking the field from the concourse; twenty feet over the end zones, I watched the Deacons warm up. #39 Alex Connor led the players out of a National Guard inflatable tunnel. The starters were introduced for each team and then the kick off.

In the first quarter the Saints and Deacons were evenly matched. The defenses were stiff. Shanley was slowly losing the field position contest, but then #20 Alex Berg kicked a real boomer and the advantage went to Shanley. As the first quarter was about to end, St. Mary's #2 Noah Krebs broke through the Deacons defense and ran 58 yards for a touchdown.

Second quarter, Shanley opened up their game with more passes. They got first downs and were moving the ball. The Saints were punting out of their own end zone and things were looking better for the Deacons. Then the Saints went to the air also. St. Mary's quarterback #3 Gus Smrekar completed a pass to #27 Dillon Reiner for a 12 yards touchdown with 30 seconds left in the half. The Saints had a 14 to 0 lead. Not giving up the Deacons managed the clock like pros and #5 Tre Fort scored a touchdown, only to have it called back. Penalties would be an issue all game long. Time for one quick throw to #4 Kelvin Caga - incomplete, and out of time.

The Deacons were in the locker room making adjustments. They ran back through the inflatable tunnel, with less enthusiasm this time. Both student sections were having a cheer off. From my location on the concourse. I have to give the edge to the Bismarck section.

Third Quarter, the Deacons decided to throw more and run less. #44 Danny Stasch wasn't getting his usual rushing yardage, but rather than change up running backs, Coach Oksendahl decided to throw to Tre and Kelvin. This included a trick play where Tre threw to Kelvin. The Saints defense bent but didn't break. And all the 'breaks' went to the Saints: three interceptions and bunch of dumb penalties. The Deacons would find themselves in the end zone or near the end zone and disaster would strike. This game could have been wildly different if the breaks had fallen in Shanley's direction. The Deacon defense held the Saints scoreless in the third quarter. Alex Berg's punts were sailing over the head of the Saint. Offense, Defense, and Special Teams, Alex was having an excellent game.

Fourth Quarter, Shanley was running out of time. Kelvin made some athletic catches in some serious coverage. A couple short runs finally got the Deacons in the scoreboard. #3 Matt Wolbaum's extra point was good. His on-side kick failed to get the ball into the Deacon's hands. This left the Deacons in poor field position (6 yard line) after the defense made a strong stand. The Saints almost scored a safety. The next play was worse: a pick-6. The Saints bench, fans, and students exploded as St. Mary's locked up their 21 to 7 victory and the ND 2A Championship.

The Shanley players, coaches, fans, and cheerleaders were crest-fallen after coming so far this season and playing so hard during the game. It was hard for the players to muster any enthusiasm for their runner up trophies. The North Dakota High School Activities Association officials handed out the team trophies and individual plaques. The Saints were a classy team. Their coach, Dan Smrekar won ND 2A Coach of the Year; and Noah Krebs won 2A Athlete of the Year. (Danny Stasch was runner up.)

Box Scores

Shanley. . 00 00 00 07–07
St. Mary’s 07 07 00 07–21

St Marys: #2 Noah Krebs 58 yard run
St Marys: #27 Dillon Reiner 12 yard pass from #3 Gus Smrekar
Shanley: #29 Zach Burd 1 yard run
St Marys: #26 Jacob Huber 5 yard interception return

Individual Statistics

Rushing (Attempts-Yards)
Shanley:
#44 Danny Stasch 14-44
#29 Zach Burd 5-19
#05 Tre Fort 1-(-1)
#06 Matt Burd 13-21
#20 Alex Berg 2-(-3)
St Marys:
#02 Noah Krebs 12-96
#07 Jacob Heinert 18-72
#02 Noah Smrekar 4-(-9)

Passing (Completions-Attempts-Interceptions-Yards)
Shanley:
#06 Matt Burd 10-22-3–182 yards
#05 Tre Fort 1-1-0–40
St Marys:
#02 Noah Smrekar 7-15-0–93

Receiving (Completions-Yards)
Shanley:
#05 Tre Fort 2-44
#04 Kelvin Caga 4-117
#02 Jake Erholtz 2-34
#44 Danny Stasch 3-27
St Marys:
#30 Casey Uhler 1-45
#26 Jacob Huber 1-20
#27 Dillon Reiner 1-12
#17 Byrne Curl 3-14
#02 Noah Krebs 1-2

Extra Points (Completions-Attempts)
Shanley:
#03 Matt Wolbaum 1-1
St Marys:
#61 Jordan Smith 3-3

Thanks to HS Game Center for the box scores and the play by play. You should check it out, there is a lot of detailed information about the game. I used their information extensively in writing my photo descriptions.

Additional game coverage Fargo Forum, Bismarck Tribune, Grand Forks Herald, ForumPreps.
Additional Photos (newspapers above) and Shanley Photos
Television Highlights. WDAY Fargo, KXnet Bismarck, also

Categories & Keywords
Category:Sports
Subcategory:Football
Subcategory Detail:High School
Keywords:

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