Warriors face St. Cat’s for state finals berth
The last area football team standing heads to Waukesha North High School on Friday as Lakeside Lutheran takes on Racine St. Catherine’s in a Division 4 Level 4 showdown at 7 p.m.
Racine St. Catherine’s (12-0) won the Metro Classic with a 7-0 mark. The Angels won a rematch with conference runner-up Martin Luther 48-35 in a Level 3 game.
St. Catherine’s threw for 1,334 yards and 28 touchdowns while rushing for 3,809 yards and 50 touchdowns over a dozen games.
Senior quarterback Da’Shaun Brown, a University of Wisconsin recruit, has thrown for 1,117 yards and rushed for 1,341 yards. Junior running back Isaiah Dodd had 1,181 rushing yards. Seniors Aleks Haeuser (503 receiving yards) and Rashid Poole (329 yards) are the wideouts.
“Their tailback (sets up) pretty deep behind the quarterback, a good seven or eight yards,” Lakeside Lutheran football coach Paul Bauer said. “(The quarterback works out of) read option looks. He’ll give it or he’ll keep it. I don’t think it’s actual option. It gives the tailback a chance to pick his hole. They have exceptional athletes and exceptional speed.”
Lakeside Lutheran (11-1) produced a similar run-pass ratio as St. Catherine’s, but with more players. Lakeside threw for 1,001 yards with 11 touchdowns, while rushing for 2,945 yards and 45 touchdowns.
The Angels play a 34 defense.
“They are big up front,” Bauer said. “They have three guys in the middle who are good sized. They come forward quickly. They really try to get pressure out of their front five, actually.”
Lake Mills defeated St. Cat’s in a Level 2 game last season 30-13. Brown was playing with a wrap on his hand and threw three interceptions.
Also there were botched exchanges which helped foil drives.
The Angels return all five skill leaders from last season.
“We’ll have to be very disciplined on defense,” Bauer said. “There’s going to be times — where the speed is so exceptional — you can do everything right and still get beat with blazing speed. We have to cut down on the big plays and do our best to bottle them up. The speed we are looking at is well beyond anything we’ve seen.
“Offensively, we have to be able to move the ball, and control the ball. The best defense is a ball control offense. We have to get first downs and put up points. I would expect there’s going to be a few points scored in the game.”
St. Croix Central takes on Little Chute in the other Division 4 state semifinal. The winners play for the state championship at Camp Randall on Thursday, Nov. 15 at 7 p.m.
“There’s a lot of excitement, amongst the kids, the coaches and the student body,” Bauer said. “We’re trying to have fun with it.”