By Rich Palzewic,
SUAMICO – Can the Bay Port football team be stopped? For the third week in a row, it doesn’t appear so.
Despite giving up two first-half scoring drives to Manitowoc Lincoln, the Pirates had too much firepower for the Ships in a 56-14 Fox River Classic Conference win on August 31 at Bay Port High School.
With the win, Bay Port (3-0 overall, 3-0 FRCC) remained unbeaten in conference play along with Green Bay Southwest and Green Bay Notre Dame, while Manitowoc (0-3, 0-3) was routed for the first time all season after close games with De Pere and Green Bay Preble to open its season.
Receiver Cordell Tinch had three touchdowns, Elijah Gash added two and quarterback Isaac Krause tossed four TD passes in Bay Port’s third convincing win in as many weeks.
The Pirates jumped out to a 49-14 lead at the break and played their third straight game with a running clock after intermission. Bay Port has given up just 20 points so far this season, but the combined record of their opponents thus far is 0-9.
“This was a much closer game than the score indicated,” said Bay Port head coach Gary Westerman. “They were able to move the ball on us a little bit in the first half and extend some drives. One of their drives was 90-plus yards and we didn’t get to run much offense in the first half because we had a kickoff return for a TD and an interception returned as well. You take those two scores off the board and the game is much closer.”
Tinch had touchdown receptions of 49 and 50 yards and also added an 82-yard kickoff return for another score in the first half. He would end the game with four receptions for 110 yards.
“Coach had told us coming into it that us receivers with the way their corners played would all have big games, which Gash and I did,” said Tinch.
When asked if the Pirates could be stopped on offense, Tinch, who is a ten-time WIAA state qualifier in track and field had a candid, but yet honest answer.
“Look, I’m not too sure if anybody has the cornerbacks to stop two 6-4 receivers, a 6-8 tight end (Jack Plumb) and a bunch of great running backs,” Tinch added with a smile. “I’m just not sure.”
It also marked the third week in a row that the Pirates scored a TD on special teams, as Isaiah Gash had one in each of the first two games.
Isaiah’s older brother Elijah had two of Krause’s touchdown passes, as he hauled in scores from 14 and 9 yards out.
Jacob Calawerts had a 69-yard dash for another score in the first half for his fifth touchdown of the season.
Defensively, Bay Port’s Alec Nagel returned an interception 43 yards and Will Kitslaar scooped up a fumble and rumbled 15 yards for scores.
The Pirates out-gained the Ships by a 383-211 margin, Krause was 9-of-10 passing for 226 yards and Calawerts gained 97 yards on just six attempts.
The Pirates will be tested next Friday night, September 8, when they travel to FRCC rival Ashwaubenon (1-2, 1-2) to take on the Jaguars at 7:00. Ashwaubenon was a 48-28 winner over De Pere in week three.
Two seasons ago when Bay Port traveled to Ashwaubenon, the Jaguars won 15-10 when Will Ark threw an 8-yard TD pass to Will Toonen with 37 seconds remaining in the game.
Look for video later in the week when Westerman talks about the rivalry with the Jaguars and what to expect.
Notes: WEEK ONE: 62-0 WIN OVER SHEBOYGAN NORTH.
WEEK TWO: 62-6 WIN OVER SHEBOYGAN SOUTH.
Bay Port hasn’t lost a FRCC game since October 16 of 2015 and has won 43 of its last 47 in conference… the Pirates have given up just 305 yards of total offense and outscored their first three opponents by a 182-20 margin.