Waterloo’s Sam Dodd tackles a Herrin player in the first quarter on Friday night. (Greg Stanek photo)
The Waterloo High School Bulldogs never gave up in Friday’s football season opener at Herrin, winning 28-27 in the final minute of the game.
Herrin converted two turnovers into touchdowns and made a 90-yard TD run to take a 21-0 lead into halftime.
Waterloo regrouped and came out strong in the third quarter. The ‘Dogs scored on a touchdown run by quarterback Aaron Laskowski and on a fourth-and-10 from the 11-yard line when Laskowski hit Nick Iorio, who broke two tackles on his way to the end zone, cutting Herrin’s lead to 21-14. Herrin scored again early in the fourth quarter but the ‘Dogs defense blocked the extra point.
With 2:51 left in the game and facing a fourth-and-four from the 27, Laskowski hit Rick Wiegand on a sideline pass, and he was off to the races, scoring a 72-yard TD to cut Herrin’s lead to 27-21.Waterloo went for the onside kick, which bounced off a Herrin player, and the ‘Dogs recovered the ball at the 47-yard line.
The Bulldogs were at the 18-yard line in the game’s final minute when Laskowski took the snap, rolled right and dropped a perfect pass in stride to Kersten Panzau for the touchdown. The extra point was good and Waterloo went up 28-27.
Herrin drove the ball to the Waterloo 33 in the waning seconds. With 1.8 seconds left, Herrin went for a long game-winning field goal. It was partially blocked by Panzau to secure the Waterloo victory.For a short video of Waterloo’s game-winning touchdown in the final minute, as captured by R-T sportswriter Greg Stanek, click this link: https://www.facebook.com/video.php?v=708083549229646
The Columbia Eagles were on the road at Wood River, where they scored four times in the first quarter, rolling to an eventual 62-0 win. Quarterback Jacob Hill threw for two touchdowns and ran for another, as seven Eagles players in all scored on the night.
Columbia hosts cross-county rival Waterloo next week.
Dupo lost 23-0 on the road at Sparta. The Tigers will be at home against Breese Central next week and host Columbia on Sept. 12.
Read full recaps of these games in the Sept. 3 print edition of the Republic-Times newspaper.
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