By Joe Bachman
KIMBERLY — Wisconsin Rapids kept up with one of the best high school football teams in the state on Friday night, with a 42-28 loss to the Kimberly Papermakers.
Kimberly would capitalize on three Mancl interceptions to hold off a Red Raider team who hung with the top ten state-ranked Papermakers. After a first quarter interception, Kimberly wasted no time putting up the first points of the night with a 1-yard rushing touchdown by D.J. Stewart.
However, Lincoln responded with an Isaac Pelot 1-yard rushing touchdown of their own, making it 7-7 late in the first quarter. Kimberly responded quickly with an 18-yard Zach Lechnir touchdown and then never looked back.
After another Lincoln interception, the Papermakers kept the heat on with a 29-yard touchdown to Austin Wallace to put Kimberly up 21-7. Another late second quarter touchdown had Lincoln down 28-7 at halftime.
Even down 35-7 at one point, the Red Raiders still had lots of fight left in them. Lincoln put up two straight touchdowns, including one off a turnover to narrow the Papermaker lead to 14 points. This was capped off by an 87-yard bomb to Nash Coombs. With the score 35-21 early in the fourth quarter, Lincoln was threatening, only for the Kimberly defense to come up big with another interception to put the final nail in the coffin for the Red Raiders.
Quarterback Jacob Mancl went 23-for-39, passing for 295 yards, with two touchdowns and three interceptions. Isaac Pelot ran for 136 yards and two touchdowns, and it was Nash Coombs who led all receivers with five catches for 145 yards and a touchdown. Raider star Isaiah Westfall had 33 yards on six receptions and a touchdown for the night.
Lincoln will take their high-powered offense back home next week when they take on Oshkosh North.