Amherst shines in three-peat
Glodowski sets Division 5 rushing record
By Greg Seubert
If the Amherst football team was going to win a third straight state championship, it was going to be with a first-year quarterback.
Marcus Glodowski was apparently up for the challenge.
The senior scored all four of the Falcons’ touchdowns and set a state Division 5 record with 269 rushing yards Nov. 16 in a 28-21 win over Lake Country Lutheran at the WIAA State Football Championships at Camp Randall Stadium in Madison.
Not only did Glodowski score a rushing touchdown in each quarter to tie another Division 5 record, he also helped seal the win with an interception in the final minutes.
Glodowski capped the game’s opening drive with a 1-yard keeper 3;10 into the game. The Lightning answered with Ethan Wilkins’ 15-yard to Michael Schumacher with 9:44 remaining in the first half to cap a four-play, 80-yard drive, but the Falcons answered with a nine-play, 69-yard drive that ended with Glodowski’s 27-yard TD run.
The Lightning also scored on their next drive, as Dane Vance scored from 3 yards out with 1:27 to go in the half.
Wilkins completed 11 of 13 passes in the first half for 165 yards, but Amherst held the Lightning to 32 rushing yards.
“They were killing us with the pass,” coach Mark Lusic said. “I thought they’d have a hard time running against us, most teams have all year. We made a few adjustments and that was the difference.”
A blocked punt set up the first score of the third quarter after the Lightning held Amherst to a three-and-out on the Falcons’s first drive. Ethan Adler recovered Glodowski’s blocked punt at the Amherst 12-yard line and Wilkins and Schumacher hooked up for a 12-yard pass that gave Lake Country Lutheran a 21-14 lead.
Amherst tied the game with a five-play, 59-yard drive that lasted only 1:23, as Glodowski’s 3-yard run came with 6:19 to go in the third quarter. Glodowski had runs of 32 and 20 yards on the drive.
The Lightning drove to Amherst’s 31-yard line, but the Falcon defense held Vance to a 2-yard gain on a fourth-and-3 play.
Another short drive that took only 1:35 off the clock led to the game’s final score, as Glodowski scored from 5 yards out with 6:52 to go in the game. Glodowski had runs of 32 and 16 yards on the five-play, 70-yard drive.
Both teams punted on their next drives and the Lightning took over on their own 7-yard line after a 50-yard punt from Glodowski.
Amherst had the ball back on the next play, however, as Glodowski intercepted Wilkins’ pass to Schumacher at the Lake Country Lutheran 42-yard line with 3:10 to go.
Glodowski gained 39 yards on six straight rushes to give the Falcons a first-and-goal at the Lightning 3-yard line with less than a minute to play. Amherst was able to run out the clock after Lake Country Lutheran took its last two time outs.
Lusic’s halftime adjustments included Glodowski covering Schumacher, who finished with five catches for 59 yards.
Glodowski completed three of eight passes for 49 to go with his record-setting 269 yards on the ground.
“That was not my goal,” Lusic said. “He threw it just enough and we rode him. The thing is he made the correct reads. He didn’t force it.”
Amherst had a 26-14 advantage in first downs, outgained the Lightning 464-280 and finished 5 yards off of the Division 5 championship team record with 415 yards on the ground.
The Falcons also played without running back Bryce Holderman, the team’s leading rusher behind Glodowski. Holderman had switched from offensive lineman to running back after an early-season injury to Chandler Benn, but didn’t play in the championship game after going down in the Falcons’ state semifinal game with a concussion.
“It’s a testament to our guys,” Lusic said. “They all believe in it. Josh Rieck was the guy tonight.”
Rieck, filling in for Holderman, finished with 119 yards on 22 carries.
Amherst wrapped up the season with a 13-1 record, while the Lightning also finished 13-1.
Lusic, coaching in his fourth straight championship game and fifth since 2012, said he wouldn’t be surprised to see the Lightning, playing for the program’s first state championship, back at Camp Randall.
“They are good,” he said. “They’ve got something brewing over their right now. They’re a balanced team and they’re tough to defend. They have a nice program going on over there.”