Football trounced by conference foe

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Football trounced by conference foe

Story by Steve Fruehauf, Copy Editor

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UW-Platteville claimed their second win over the Blugolds last Saturday at Carson Park with a 24-17 win.

But that’s not to say UW-Eau Claire didn’t have their chances to even things up. Late in the fourth quarter, they came up empty-handed on two separate drives that would have either tied or won the game.

This was Platteville’s first conference win against Eau Claire this season since their first matchup was considered a non-conference game.

“We just had to get down and make a play,” senior quarterback Austin Neu said. “That didn’t happen. We just had to be more focused in on those last two drives and know what we have to achieve. We have to want it a little more.”

The Blugolds started off scoring in the first quarter with an early field goal after two successful fourth down conversions put them in field goal range. Platteville responded later, completing a 10-yard touchdown toss with 2:50 left in the quarter.

Eau Claire was first to score in the second quarter as well. Junior running back Joel Sweeney punched in a two-yard run with a little over two minutes left, bringing the score
to 10-7.

After fighting their way down the field, Platteville was able to squeak in a touchdown with just four seconds left in the half.

“Them getting that touchdown was a big help to them,” Sweeney said.

“They were getting the ball back right away at half so they had some momentum going from the second into the third quarter. We needed that stop really bad and if we would have got it, we would have been fine but you can’t prevent everything.”

Platteville then added a field goal in the third. Again in the fourth, they scored on a 22 yard touchdown run, making the score 24-10.

Sweeney responded just a minute later with another two-yard rushing touchdown. That put Eau Claire down by seven with approximately six minutes to go.

Forcing Platteville to punt on the next drive, the Blugolds had the ball with a little less than three minutes to go.

They started off well, gaining two first downs. But three dropped passes
ended the drive.

Eau Claire then forced yet another punt and was left with 40 seconds to score.  After a six-yard rush by Neu and then an incomplete pass, Neu threw an interception on third down to give Platteville the ball with 11 seconds left and ultimately ended the game 24-17.

Neu finished with 200 yards passing and 70 yards rushing. Sweeney ran for 68 yards total along with two touchdowns.

Platteville sophomore quarterback Bryce Corrigan threw for 278 yards and two touchdowns while their senior running back Hank McIvor rushed for 99 yards.

Even though this week’s loss brings Eau Claire’s overall record to 3-5, Head Coach Todd Glaser said he doesn’t think his team is out of anything yet.

“We have two conference games left,” Glaser said. “We go down to Whitewater and we just have to go out, play well, prepare and be ready to go.

Both Eau Claire and Whitewater have a conference record of 3-2. Along with Platteville, that record ties the three for second in the conference.

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