Warriors Win! 26-24

By Brady Ambrose
The Caledonia Argus
The Caledonia Warriors will be playing for their third straight Class AA state title after a thrilling, 26-24 win over B.O.L.D. in the semi-finals Thursday afternoon at the Metrodome.
Brad Strub’s 21 yard run on third and 14 at the Warriors own 40 yard line with less than three minutes to play in the game proved to be the difference after BOLD had pulled within two points with five minutes to play on Tyler Rock’s touchdown from five yards out. Strub’s run gave Caledonia a huge first down and kept the clock running. But BOLD had a final chance after Caledonia was forced to punt.
Starting at their own 11 yard line with 1:39 to play, Rock hit Trent Athmann with a strike to the 24 and a first down. But two plays later Caledonia’s Shane Sheehan tackled Athmann for a 10 yard loss back to the 15. On the next play Rock was called for intentional grounding, forcing a fourth and 25 at the BOLD four yard line. Adam Buttell then ended BOLD’s hopes when he knocked down Rock’s pass with 26 seconds left to play and Caledonia took over on downs and ran out the clock, sending them to the state championship game Nov. 23 at 1 p.m. against either Moose Lake/Willow River.
Taking a 7-0 lead on quarterback Alex Varney’s 46 yard touchdown strike to Levi Schmitz with 1:28 left in the first quarter. BOLD tied the game on their next possession when Rock and Athmann teamed up on an eight yard scoring pass that capped a 15 play drive by BOLD to end the first half. Caledonia regained the lead on their opening possession of the third quarter as Levi Schmitz blocked a BOLD punt in the end zone and recovered it for a touchdown, but on their next play from scrimmage BOLD scored on a 60 yard run by Rock to give BOLD a 14-13 lead.
Caledonia answered with a touchdown by Ryan Pitts that capped an eight play drive for the Warriors, giving them a 20-14 lead, but BOLD answered with a 41 yard field goal by Nick Kubesh at the end of the third quarter that cut Caledonia’s lead to 20-17 going into the final quarter. Caledonia took a 26-17 lead on a four yard run by Varney with 9:26 to play but BOLD then drove and got within two points on Rock’s touchdown.
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