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Milton Red Hawks open 2013 with lopsided loss

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Tim Wester, Special to The Gazette
August 24, 2013

MILTON—New Milton High football coach Bill O'Leary said he has enjoyed every minute of his job since taking over for Jeff Bachinski last spring.

Perhaps the only exception being the 48 painful minutes O'Leary spent watching DeForest dismantle his Red Hawks 45-7 in a Badger nonconference crossover game here Friday evening.

Norksie two-way standout Jeff Berry caught two touchdown passes and added a 28-yard fumble return to help DeForest (1-0) spoil O'Leary's return to head coaching at his alma mater.

“I would have liked to turn this into some Hollywood story where we won our first game. Unfortunately in real life, it doesn't work that way,” said O'Leary, who previously spent nine years as the Janesville Craig head coach.

“I thought our kids played hard, and that was one of the things we talk about doing every week.”

The Norskies clearly weren't interested in any Hollywood underdog story. Brendon Lapp capped the opening scoring drive with a 33-yard touchdown pass to Berry early in the first quarter.

Lucas Miller's 1-yard touchdown run late in first, followed by Joe Franz's 11-yard touchdown catch quickly made it 20-0 in the second quarter.

Berry then blew the game open with a 28-yard touchdown fumble return with 2 minutes left in the first half.

“They returned eight defensive starters from last year's team, and I'm already thrilled to see them leave,” O'Leary said. “They were good tonight.”

Milton finally solved the stingy Norskie defense later in the first half. Andrew Heisz took a quick hitter up the middle to beat the blitz for a 41-yard run to the DeForest 1. Tyler Westrick then capped the drive with a 1-yard touchdown with 13 seconds in the second to make it 26-6.

Milton, however, never built on its momentum in the second half.

A bad Milton snap sailed over punter Robert Guenther's head, forcing the punter to kick the ball out of the end zone for a safety before the Norskies could fall on the ball. That gave DeForest a 28-7 lead.

Jadon Sackman's 25-yard touchdown run, Berry's 7-yard touchdown catch, and then a late field goal rounded out the Norskies' second-half scoring plays.

“We just got outplayed by a very good football team,” O'Leary said. “We played hard, but we got to make sure that next our playing hard turns into better execution and do more things right so we have a better chance to win.”

DEFOREST 45, MILTON 7

DeForest                        13       13                                 16 3—45

Milton                              0          7                                   0   0—7

Scoring summary: D—Jeff Berry, 33 pass from Brendon Lapp (kick failed). D—Lucas Miller, 1 run (Brock Allen kick). D—Joe Franz, 10 pass from Lapp (Allen kick). D—Berry, 28 yard fumble return (run failed). M—Westrick, 1 run (Michael Guenther kick). D—Safety, ball out of end zone. D—Sackman, 25 run (Allen kick). D- Berry, 7 pass from Lapp (Allen kick), D- FG, Mason Eberhardt, 22 yardsStatistics:

Statistics: First downs—D 17, M 6. Yards rushing—D 29-130, M 29-31. Yards passing—D 102, M 31. Passes (att-comp-int) D 18-11-1, M 11-5-1. Fumbles—D 1-0, M 2-2. Penalties—D 5-50, M 7-70.



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