Destruction of Faribault Bethlehem Academy inches Wabasso closer to State title

Racing out to a 36-0 halftime lead the Wabasso Rabbits rolled to a 53-14 demolition of outmanned Faribault Bethlehem Academy Saturday afternoon in State Class A Quarterfinal action held in New Ulm.

With the victory, the Rabbits (12-0) remain unbeaten on the season and will head into a semifinal match-up with Ada Borup/Norman Co. West (12-0) at 9 a.m. Saturday morning at US Bank Stadium in Minneapolis.

The Cougars - ranked seventh in the final Class A poll - topped second ranked Braham 29-20 in their quarterfinal match-up and have put together an impressive campaign, posting five shutouts and holding teams to an average of just 7.4 ppg while scoring over 39 ppg.

Ada-Borup/NCW is led on the ground by Zach Pelzman who has 179 carries for 1,255 yards and 26 touchdowns. Verdis Barber has 52 carries for 587 yards and seven touchdowns and Brett Fetting has 50 carries for 387 yards and seven touchdowns. Quarterback Jared Brainard has completed 63-of-103 passes for 1,063 yards and 12 touchdowns.

The Rabbits meanwhile continued their utter destruction of Class A foes, rolling up 53 points on an Faribault team that had no answer. In the past five games the Rabbits are averaging 55 ppg and have not allowed more than 14 points in a single game since week one of the regular season.

Saturday afternoon in the rout of FBA, the Rabbits unrelenting ground game was once again in full effect as it racked up 323 yards and five touchdowns. The Rabbit defense meanwhile - which has allowed just eight touchdowns with its first team - forced five turnovers and held FBA’s offense to just 117 yards, most of those coming late in the fourth quarter.

Senior Cooper Taylor got the Rabbits going early in the first quarter as he broke loose on a 45-yard touchdown run to put Wabasso up 7-0.

Nick Altermatt would then score on a 4-yard touchdown run and Kyle Jacobson plunged in from 2-yards out to put the Rabbits up 21-0 with 7:38 to play in the first half.

The Rabbits put an exclamation point on the half by scoring twice in the last 40 seconds as Cooper Taylor scored from 6-yards out and Altermatt hooked up with Colton Taylor on a 42-yard strike as time expired to give the Rabbits a more than comfortable 36-0 lead at the half.

Midway through the third quarter Altermatt connected with Tony Franta on an 11-yard touchdown strike and Colton Taylor added a 30-yard field goal to give the Rabbits a 46-0 lead with a quarter to play. Isaac Schmeising would cap off the Rabbit scoring in the fourth quarter with a 1-yard run.

FBA added a pair of late touchdowns with the Rabbit reserves in the game.

Cooper Taylor continued to creep closer to 2,000 yards on the season with 24 carries for 146 yards and two scores. He now has 231 carries for 1,940 yards and 34 touchdowns (35 total). He was recently selected to compete in the Minnesota High School All-Star game on December 9 at US Bank Stadium as part of the South Roster.

Jacobson finished with 19 carries for 111 yards and a score.

Altermatt was 4-of-6 passing for 64 yards and two scores and added seven carries for 59 yards and a touchdown. He currently has completed 73-of-103 passes for 1,168 yards and nine scores and has 89 carries for 690 yards and 13 touchdowns.

Colton Taylor had once reception for 42 yards and a score, Cooper Taylor added two receptions for 11 yards and Franta had one catch for 11 yards and a touchdown. Colton Taylor has 31 catches on the season for 514 yards and six scores.

The Rabbits ran 63 offensive plays compared to just 35 for the Cardinals, had 22 first downs to just six and held the Cardinals to -4 passing yards.

Schmeising finished with eight tackles (three solo) and a tackle-for-loss, Kody Kuehn added six tackles (two solo) and a tackle-for-loss, Jacobson and Jacob Plaetz each had five tackles and Luke Wagner added four tackles.

Class A State Quarterfinals

Wabasso 53,   Bethlehem Academy 14

First Quarter Wab - Cooper Taylor 45-yard run (Colton Taylor kick) Wab - Altermatt 4-yard run (Colton Taylor kick) Second Quarter Wab - Jacobson 2-yard run (Colton Taylor kick) Wab - Altermatt 42-yard pass to Colton Taylor (Altermatt 2-point to Franta) Third Quarter Wab - Altermatt 11-yard pass to Franta (Colton Taylor kick) Wab - Colton Taylor 30-yard field goal Fourth Quarter FBA - Clark 4-yard run (Langfeldt kick) FBA - Bauernfeind 44-yard run (Bokman kick)