Central, 6-3 overall and 4-3 in the MBC, nailed down a WIAA playoff berth by dominating the first half. The Panthers led 28-0 at halftime and used sweeps on the edge of the field to the right and left in their wishbone offense to gain huge chunks of rushing yardage and score touchdowns.
One consolation for the Cardinals was their play through much of the third quarter and early in the fourth. After SCC's Ryan Larson ripped a 33-yard run for touchdown on Central's first possession of the second half, Prescott responded quickly for its first touchdown, a 55-yard pass from quarterback Luke Murphy to tight end Noah Kylander.
Murphy, a senior honored on Senior Night, had best passing effort of the season, going 5-8 for nearly 100 yards and a touchdown and one interception. He also scored a TD as well, on a one-yard run to start the fourth quarter to make the score 35-12.
However, the Panthers scored 18 points in the fourth quarter, largely with their reserves to keep control of the contest. St. Croix will join conference champ Osceola along with New Richmond and Amery in the playoffs from the MBC
For more on the game, read next week's Prescott Journal on newsstands and in town on Wednesday.
|Prescott quarterback Luke Murphy gets set to throw the football helped out by blocking from PHS linemen Jake Block and Payton Brownell.|
|Prescott's Derek Rundquist tries to keep upright during a tackle attempt by two St. Croix Central defenders.|
|Prescott running back Aaron Lubich moves through a hole on a counter play.|