Wednesday, December 8th, 2021 Church Directory
KASSON-MANTORVILLE’S BROOKS BUCHANON stretched over the goal line with nine seconds left to lift the KoMets to a 24-20 win over the heavily-favored Bulldogs in the State 4A semifinals playoffs . Defending on the play was Becker’s Zach Bengtson. (Patriot Photo by Bill Morgan).
AS IF FORETOLD, this pass just eluded Nick Berglund late in Thursday’s game, emulating the missed opportunity the Bulldogs had in finishing off the KoMets. (Patriot Photo by Bill Morgan).
BECKER WIDEOUT LOGAN EISELE (R) celebrated Becker’s first TD with QB Ryan Bengtson (L). (Patriot Photo by Bill Morgan).
KICKER ZACH BENGTSON (#5, left) was a star all season long, converting the majority of his extra points and field goals to help Becker go 11-0 leading up to the semifinal game. Bengtson’s two field goals helped give Becker two leads at 10-0 and 20-17. (Patriot Photo by Bill Morgan).
BECKER FB CARTER CALLAHAN (R) had a very good game, amassing 106 yards on 18 carries. (Patriot Photo by Bill Morgan).
THE BULLDOGS STRUGGLED to contain Kasson-Mantorville’s QB Matthew Donovan (Middle, below) as the KoMets defeated the Bulldogs 24-20 in last Thursday’s semifinal at U.S. Bank Stadium. (Patriot Photo by Bill Morgan).

Heartbreaker...

Last Thursday at U.S. Bank Stadium, the Becker Bulldog football team saw their 2021 state title hopes fall to the hands (and feet) of Matthew Donovan, Kasson-Mantorville’s senior quarterback.

Donovan proved to be too much to handle for the Bulldogs in the latter stages of the game, after Becker clung to the lead in the game until the final few seconds.

Becker entered the semi-final game as the #1 seed with an impressive, 11-0 record. They were favored in their game against the KoMets and looked poised to make the championship game when they led 17-3 late in the third quarter.

That was until an interception and run back to Becker’s three yard line turned the tide and sent the Bulldogs reeling in the final 12 minutes.

Less than one minute into the fourth quarter and just moments after the crucial interception, Donovan scored the first of his three touchdowns. The Bulldogs had no answer for Donovan, who not only quarterbacked the team, but he was their #1 ground gainer and was also in on kickoffs and punts. Another crucial play came in the fourth when Becker had to punt the ball away holding a slim lead. Donovan reeled in the kick, dropped it, scooped it up and eluded Bulldog tacklers for a 40 yard return.

Later, Donovan was weaving his way through the Bulldog tacklers again on a QB option and as he was being tackled, his helmet was ripped off and the Bulldogs suffered a costly, 15-yard facemask penalty. That moved the KoMets deep into Bulldog territory where they eventually would score to tie the game at 17-17.

Becker kindled a spark and produced a scoring drive capped with a go-ahead field goal for a 20-17 lead from Zach Bengtson with just over 1:30 to go.

The game began slow and both teams were a little shoddy in the first quarter, trying to find a groove to settle in. The Bulldogs got the first score when QB Ryan Bengtson found WR Logan Eisele for a seven-yard TD just a minute or so into the second quarter. The Bulldogs built the lead later when Zach Bengtson converted a 36-yard field goal with just three seconds to go in the first half.

Things got a little tight in the third when the KoMets drove the field and converted a field goal of their own to bring the game to 10-3, However, just three minutes later, Bengtson found Alex Weiss from 34 yards out to increase the lead to 17-3. All was looking well for Becker until defensive end Gavin Giesler stepped in front of a screen pass and raced 56 yards to Becker’s three with the interception.

That sparked the KoMets and shook the Bulldogs.

Becker went three-and-out on its next possession and could have gotten the spark back had Donovan not had the big punt return, all the way to the Becker 27. Five plays later, the KoMets were in the end zone again, this time capped by a 3-yard Donovan run with 6:38 left. That tied the score at 17-17.

Becker used a 26-yard field goal to regain the lead, 20-17 with 1:30 to go and all the planets seem to be aligned...Until Donovan made Becker Mellow, Yellow.

34 yards out to increase the lead to 17-3. All was looking well for Becker until defensive end Gavin Giesler stepped in front of a screen pass and raced 56 yards to Becker’s three with the interception.

That sparked the KoMets and shook the Bulldogs.

Becker went three-and-out on its next possession and could have gotten the spark back had Donovan not had the big punt return, all the way to the Becker 27. Five plays later, the KoMets were in the end zone again, this time capped by a 3-yard Donovan run with 6:38 left. That tied the score at 17-17.

Becker used a 26-yard field goal to regain the lead, 20-17 with 1:30 to go and all the planets seem to be aligned...Until Donovan made Becker Mellow, Yellow.

The KoMets were left with a minute and half and 80 yards to work with, needing a touchdown or a field goal to tie. They started their final crack at it from their own 20. On the drive, Donovan had a big run of 19 yards, setting K-M up at the 50. Donovan found Giesler with an eight-yard pass after that, ran the ball 14 yards, and ran it four yards to the Becker 14 on the same play when the Bulldogs tackled him by the facemask. Then, there was one more six-yard run by him with 22 seconds left.

Donovan finished the deal when on second down from the seven, he found Brooks Buchanan with a pass in the left portion of the end zone with nine seconds left and the Bulldogs were stunned.

The extra point was converted by K-M to make it 24-20 and the game essentially sealed.

Donovan finished with 134 yards on 25 carries.  He was seven-for-18 through the air with one TD completion and one interception.

Becker’s Carter Callahan finished with 106 yards on 18 carries to lead the Bulldog ground game. Bengtson was 10-of-18 for 132 yards and two TDs and one interception.

As far as the passing game, Buchanon had four catches for 32 yards and one TD. Becker’s Alex Weiss had four catches for 79 yards and a TD.

The KoMets are hoping to win their first state championship Nov. 26, back at U.S. Bank Stadium, taking on Hutchinson.