Jaguar aerial attack sinks Ships 42-21; Jaguars next take on Pulaski in showdown
By Murray Gleffe, Sports Correspondent
The Ashwaubenon Jaguars were in their first week of must wins and they passed with flying colors. The Jaguars came out throwing the ball all over the field and defeated the Manitowoc Ships 42-21 Friday evening at Goelz Field. Jaguars QB Anthony Guarascio threw for 265 yards and 5 touchdowns and scored the other touchdown on the ground. Jaguars Running back Alex Stanko hauled in two of the touchdown receptions from 5 and 12 yards respectively. The Jaguars also picked off Ships QB Jared Lensmeyer once and picked up a fumble recovery by DB Riley Siudzinski.
The Jaguars started their first possession from their own 40 and cashed their drive in 9 plays later when Guarascio found a cutting Alex Stanko over the middle and Stanko did the rest with his feet (going into the end-zone from 12 yards out). It gave the Jaguars a 7-0 lead with 8:37 left in the opening quarter. The Ships were not to be denied on their opening series. Lensmeyer led the Ships on a drive that included three straight runs (33 yards) by star RB Owen Lettenberger to set the Ships up at the Jaguar 11. One play later Lensmeyer found WR Davis Heinzen from 11 yards out to notch the score at 7-7 with 6:32 still left in the opening stanza.
After exchanging punts, the Jaguars opened up shop at their own 40 after a short punt by the Ships. Guarascio found Will Adair for 23 yards, and then hit Ben DeLaurelle for 29 yards, and capped off the drive by finding Troy Lo from 7 yards out (in the middle of the end-zone). It put the Jaguars up 14-7 with just a minute remaining left in the opener.
The Ships couldn’t find any rhythm in the second quarter and it cost them the ball game. In the five possessions they had, they punted three times, fumbled once, and had the half expire on them for the other. Meanwhile, the Jaguars capitalized on two of their four opportunities. The first was a series that started 59 yards away from ‘pay-dirt’. During the drive, Guarascio once again found receivers open. This time he hit Parker Murphy twice for big yardage. Guarascio finished the drive off by scampering 15 yards into the end-zone after he was flushed out of the pocket on 2nd and 10. The ensuing extra point by Placekicker Kole Kolinski put the Jaguars up 21-7. They added to that total just six minutes later when Guarascio laced a high towering ball toward the end-zone. Jaguar WR Collin Secor came down with simultaneous position with Ships DB Tyler McDowell. The official awarded the catch and TD to Secor and the Jaguars went up 28-7 and took that lead into the intermission.
The Jaguar defense came out of the halftime locker room focused as ever. They knew they had to step up with LB Cam Wheeler out with an ankle injury. On the third play from scrimmage to start half number two, Jaguar DB Caleb Opperman stepped in front of Ships WR Tanner Hadler to make the pick. It set the Jaguars up with great position and the Jaguars took advantage. After a key Will Adair catch on 3rd and 6 to keep the drive alive, Guarascio found Stanko from 5 yards out to put the Jaguars up by four touchdowns (35-7) early in the 3rd.
The Ships responded nicely after Lensmeyer found Hadler from 36 yards out to cut the margin to 35-13. However, the Jaguars left no doubt (in the early fourth quarter) who was the superior team on this night. Guarascio found Jaguars TE Evan Wood in the extreme left side of the end-zone for touchdown pass #5 on the night. Wood did a ‘tight-rope’ act to ensure the catch was made. With the score reading Ashwaubenon 42, Manitowoc 13, Jaguar Head Football Coach Mark Jonas brought the reserves in for the final 9 minutes of the ball game. It was a good chance to see what the youngsters could do in a game time situation. When the clock hit 0:00, the Ships had tacked on one additional touchdown, to put the final tally at 42-21. The Jaguars will take their 2-4 record into Pulaski next Friday with the second of four hurdles they must cross to keep their hopes alive for the playoffs.
Game Preview (September 29): Ashwaubenon Jaguars 2-4 at Pulaski Red Raiders 3-3
The Ashwaubenon Jaguars got a much-needed win in Week 6 over the Manitowoc Ships 42-21. They will be tested this upcoming Friday by the Red Raiders unusual single-wing offense that has churned out close to 2000 yards (on the ground) on the season. Dylan Hendricks leads the way with over 1000 yards. Dustin Graf and Lucas Gracyalny have chipped in with 498 and 265 yards respectively. The Red Raiders have completed only 14 passes on the year, but when they do they go for a big junk of yardage (20.0 per pass completion). Zach Marohnic, Hendricks, Andrew Egnarski, and Kendall Karcz lead the way on the defensive side of things. The Jaguars will once again try to ride the arm of Anthony Guarascio and utilize the run of Alex Stanko. Both have put big numbers in the first six games. Defensively, Kenny Brooks, Austin Helstad, Marcus Wagner, Diego Zastrow, and Riley Siudinski will be in charge of playing assignment football. The winner of this game will take that big leap towards a playoff berth come mid-October!