Spencer/Columbus football jumps on Neillsville/Granton early, rolls to fifth-straight win

NEILLSVILLE – Jarred Mandel tossed three long touchdown passes in the first quarter and that was all the Spencer/Columbus Catholic football team needed as the Rockets routed Neillsville/Granton 46-14 in a Cloverbelt Conference game Friday night at Neillsville High School.

Mandel had TD passes of 52 and 62 yards to running back Austin Bacon, and 60 yards to wideout Ethan Meece in the first quarter. Bacon added a 28-yard touchdown run and the Rockets led 27-0 after the first quarter.

Spencer/Columbus made it 40-0 by halftime as Hayden Bauman had a 32-yard touchdown run and Mandel ran in from the 9. Bauman added a fumble return for a score early in the third quarter for the Rockets.

Spencer/Columbus improves to 5-0 overall and 4-0 in the Cloverbelt Conference with the victory. The Warriors remain winless at 0-5 and 0-4 in conference play.

“I was happy with our passing game tonight,” Spencer/Columbus coach Jason Gorst said. “We had good protection and made big plays. Tanner Kleinschmidt had a great game on both sides of the ball.

“We were down three starting offensive linemen and he was able to change positions and play well. The whole group stepped up.”

Mandel finished 9-for-16 for 228 yards and the three touchdowns through the air.

Spencer/Columbus, ranked third in this week’s Wissports.net Division 5 state coaches poll, plays at Colby (5-0, 4-0 Cloverbelt Conference) in a battle of undefeated teams next Friday, Sept. 21, at Colby High School. The game begins at 7 p.m.

Rockets 46, Warriors 14
Spencer/Columbus 27 13 6 0 – 46
Neillsville/Granton 0 0 8 6 – 14
First Quarter

SC – Austin Bacon 52 pass from Jarred Mandel (Brock Bennington kick), 10:53.
SC – Bacon 28 run (kick missed), 7:19.
SC – Bacon 62 pass from Mandel (Bennington kick), 6:04.
SC – Ethan Meece 60 pass from Mandel (Bennington kick), 1:34.
Second Quarter
SC – Hayden Bauman 32 run (kick missed), 11:39.
SC – Mandel 9 run (Bennington kick), 0:40.
Third Quarter
SC – Bauman 35 fumble return (kick missed), 10:31.
NG – Hunter Hand 36 pass from Monte Diestler (Luke Mayer run), 4:02.
Fourth Quarter
NG – Mayer 25 run (run failed), 6:33.
Team Statistics
First downs:
Spencer/Columbus 16; Neillsville/Granton 10.
Rushing (att-yards): SC 21-204; NG 27-78.
Passing (comp-att-yards-int): SC 9-16-228-1; NG 10-19-64-1.
Total yards: SC 452; NG 142.
Penalties (no.-yards): SC 2-10; NG 1-5.
Fumbles (total-lost): SC none; NG 1-1.
Punting (no.-avg.): SC none; NG 7-22.7.
Individual Statistics
Rushing:
SC, Austin Bacon 4-79, Eden Jacobson 3-39, Hayden Bauman 2-37, Jarred Mandel 2-18, Carson Hildebrandt 3-15, Leo Rodriguez 1-11, Tyson McDonald 3-4, Dominic Post 1-2, Gage Stratman 1-0, Connor Clark 1-minus 1. NG, Luke Mayer 18-87, Thomas Selk 3-4, Tommy Friemoth 3-3, Monte Diestler 3-minus 16.
Passing: SC, Mandel 9-16-228-1. NG, Diestler 10-18-64-1, Mayer 0-1-0-0.
Receiving: SC, Ethan Meece 3-82, Bauman 3-32, Bacon 2-114, Jacob Dick 1-0. NG, Mayer 3-13, Cole Hediger 2-14, Tommy Friemoth 2-2, Selk 2-minus 1, Hunter Hand 1-36.
Interceptions (defense): SC, Tanner Kleinschmidt. NG, Luke Erickson.
Records: Spencer/Columbus 5-0, 4-0 Cloverbelt Conference; Neillsville/Granton 0-5, 0-4 Cloverbelt Conference.