Wykons fall to Saginaw Nouvel 17-14 in state semifinal

MARQUETTE — A 21-yard field goal by Saginaw Nouvel’s Jacob Burr early in the third quarter was the difference in the Panthers’ 17-14 win against West Iron County on Friday in the Division 8 state semifinal.

It was Burr’s first field goal of the season.

Saginaw Nouvel (13-0) plays the winner of Mendon (12-0) vs. Ottawa Lake Whiteford (12-0). The Division 8 final is scheduled for 10 a.m. EST Friday, Nov. 24 at Ford Field in Detroit.

The field goal was set up by an 83-yard kickoff return to the Wykons’ 2 yard line at the start of the second half. West Iron’s defense stifled the Panthers to set up the field goal with 10:04 left in the third quarter.

The Wykons (11-2) were held scoreless in the second half after a fruitful first half. West Iron had four drives in the second half — two ended with punts and the other two ended with turnover on downs. West Iron’s last possession of the year was a fourth-and-3 stopped short of the line to gain.

West Iron started the game with production on offense and defense. The Wykons’ second possession ended with a 37-yard pass to Caden Pellizzer. The defender slipped, leaving him wide open at the 15 to score before other closing defenders got to him.

But the Panthers tied the game with a 6-yard run by quarterback Tate Hausbeck. Alexander Wrobel took the handoff but fumbled — Hausbeck scooped up the ball and edged across the goal line with 4:47 left in the first.

West Iron took the lead with a 2-yard run by running back Jayce Brockhagen.

The Panthers answered with 1:02 remaining in the first half on a 12-yard pass from Hausbeck to Kenneth Kujawa.

West Iron finished the game with 197 total yards, including 155 rushing and 42 passing.

Brockhagen led the Wykons with 71 rushing yards and a touchdown on 20 carries. Quarterback Neil Tomasoski was 2 of 11 for 42 yards with a touchdown and an interception.