WISCONSIN RAPIDS – Big nights on the ground by Gus Turner-Zick and Victor Kizewski translated into a big win during the annual River Jug game between Stevens Point Area Senior High and Wisconsin Rapids.
Turner-Zick scored twice and Kizewski once to lead the Panthers to a dominating 38-14 victory over the Raiders Friday night at South Wood County Field. It was the fourth straight win over Rapids as SPASH increased its lead in the series to 39-27-1. With the victory, SPASH improved to 4-2 overall and gets to keep the Ol’ River Jug in its trophy case for another year.
The Panthers’ big play ability was on display, especially on scoring plays. Two touchdowns were more than 15 yards, a pair for over 20 and the longest, an 81 yarder 19 seconds before the half by Kizewski. The speedy SPASH senior ran the ball just four times, but finished with 117 yards.
Turner-Zick, meanwhile, racked up 185 yards on 20 carries and scored on runs of 2 and 24 yards. His first touchdown was set up by Kizewski, who uncorked a 30-yard run on a fourth and 27 situation from the Rapids 32-yard line.
“I think that shows you have some playmakers,” SPASH coach Pete McAdams said of the explosive scoring play his team had. “In the first half, Vic had some big plays for us and in the second half some other kids stepped up. I’m pleased with our effort and performance tonight.”
The Panthers’ passing game was efficient as well. The longest pass any Panther threw was 19 yards, but quarterback Beau Rosenthal and Kizewski had one TD pass apiece.
“We just came out and ran our stuff and played our game,” Rosenthal said. “This means a lot to us. Coming into the week the emphasis was on keeping the Jug.”
The offense put up 17 points in the first half and the SPASH defense held up its end of the deal by holding Rapids scoreless for two quarters.
The Raiders got on the scoreboard in the middle of the third quarter when Ben Olson connected with Isaiah Westfall for a 21-yard strike.
Rapids’ offense, which has incorporated more passing this season, was held to 65 yards on the ground.
“It’s tough to get in a rhythm right now with what we want to get with getting the ball to the receivers, but the kids are learning,” Rapids coach Tony Biolo said. “Ben and the rest of the offense made some great improvements tonight.”
The Rapids offense gave up 399 on the ground and 63 points in the last two games.
“Our defense was on the field for a long time tonight,” Biolo said. “They had a lot of big plays and that breaks the backs of teams.”
SP – Gus Turner-Zick 2 run (Joey Dorgan kick), 8:56
SP – Dorgan 29 field goal, 2:24
SP – Victor Kizewski 81 run (Dorgan kick), :19
SP – Joey Hauser 19 pass from Beau Rosenthal (Dorgan kick), 2:12
WR – Isaiah Westfall 21 pass from Ben Olson (Nathan Hepp kick), 6:27
SP – Mack Journell 18 pass from Rosenthal (Dorgan kick), 4:22
SP – Turner Zick 24 run (Dorgan kick), 11:27
WR – Tristan Iverson 78 run (Hepp kick), 4:29
Records: SPASH 4-2 overall, 3-2 VFA South; Wisconsin Rapids 3-3, 2-3 VFA South.
Mark Massoglia can be reached at 715-423-7200, ext. 4736 or email@example.com. Follow him on Twitter @markmazzy.