St. Paul Advances To 1A Semis 62-6

By Jeremy McDonald

MCMINNVILLE, Ore.–  St. Paul came out a tad rusty after having a Bye Week going into the 1A, 8-Man Quarterfinals Friday evening at McMinnville High School.  But strangely enough, despite their slow start, the Buckaroos geared it back up and finished the game strongly as if they had played last week in their 62-6 win over Perrydale.  

“It was good, we learned from our mistakes  and kept getting better at it and doing our jobs.  Everyone did their jobs,” St. Paul’s Ralph Pohlschneider said.

Their 16-0 lead after the first quarter did feel a lot closer than that as the Pirates pieced together back-to-back drives during that frame, but couldn’t punch it in as the Buckaroos came in clutch as the engines were coming back online.

For Perrydale, it was the first time since their 1A State Semi run in 2015 that they had gotten out of the first round.  And though it didn’t go exactly according to plan, it’s surely a good sign for those returning next year.

“We’re just planning on keep grinding over the off-season and grinding harder than we ever have before.  Just working in the weight room like we never had before,” the Pirates Brandon Lux said.  “I like how we came out (tonight), but we just couldn’t finish our drives unfortunately.  We just couldn’t capitalize on those and it just fell apart after that.”

Perrydale’s Brandon Lux runs up field as the Junior scored the lone touchdown of the game for the Pirates Friday (Picture By Jeremy McDonald)

The thing about St. Paul, as they go on to play Myrtle Point in the 1A Semifinal round, you got to take advantage of those opportunities because of what happened in the second quarter.  That’s when the St. Paul Machine came alive and used both sides of the ball to turn their two score lead into a 40-0 lead in a hurry.

Wyatt Berg found Lux for a 39-yard strike to break the shutout right before the halftime break.  Berg went 12-for-24  for 169 yards with Lux leading the team with four receptions for 78 yards.  Connor Graber also had four receptions in the game for 32 yards and five tackles.

The Bucks didn’t let up in the second half.  Their defense produced six interceptions, two for scores, as Hunter Naumann and Clay Smith each had two rushing touchdowns.Naumann had 132 yards on the ground to Smith’s 85.  Warren Rose had a team-high three receptions for 68 yards and had a touchdown on offense and one of the two Pick-6’s by St. Paul with their patience paying off during the second and third quarters.  With their mindset of ‘1-0’, they achieved that this week with the Bobcats up next.

“We just stuck to what we knew and we just had a good time out there,” Rose described.  “We got to practice hard and do whatever it takes, watch film and do everything.”

Photos By Jeremy McDonald


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