The Mountain Lake Area fotball team is averaging 49.7 points per game this season. Its defense deserves some of the credit.
"Our defense has been phenomenal all year," Wolverines coach Tim Kirk said. "It has put us in a good position."
The Wolverines displayed a potent offense and reliable defense Friday at U.S. Bank Stadium. With Abraham Stoesz directing a mistake-free and balanced offense, Mountain Lake rolled to a 45-6 victory over Win-E-Mac in a Nine-Man semifinal.
The victory puts Mountain Lake (13-0) in the Prep Bowl for the second consecutive season.
Stoesz, a senior, rushed for 183 yards and two touchdowns, and passed for 149 yards and two touchdowns in leading the Wolverines to 498 yards in offense.
Stoesz also contributed a timely play on defense. With the Wolverines up 12-0 early in the second quarter, he intercepted a pass in the end zone to end a Patriots scoring threat.
"We were in zone coverage," Stoesz said, "and I was able to make the read."
After the interception, Stoesz ran for a touchdown and threw a touchdown pass as the Wolverines built a 24-0 halftime lead.
Win-E-Mac coach Aaron Cook said his team was "able to move the ball early, but their defense really tightened up in the red zone."
In the third quarter, Stoesz ran for a touchdown and threw a scoring pass and Mace Herrig ran for a touchdown, extending the Wolverines' lead to 45-0. Herrig had 96 rushing yards and three TDs.
The Patriots (12-1) were playing in the semifinals for the first time.