Football | Chatfield 29, Lewiston-Altura 12
LEWISTON — Chatfield scored early on two long plays and then controlled things the rest of the way, defeating Lewiston-Altura 29-12 in a battle of state-ranked teams in the Section One, Class AA semifinals Saturday night.
Lewiston-Altura entered the game with a 9-0 record and ranked sixth in the state Class AA poll. Chatfield was 8-1 and ranked 10th.
Jacob Neis raced 64 yards for a touchdown on Chatfield's first possession. After L-A went three-and-out, the Gophers struck on a 72-yard pass from Nate Skare to Jamie LaPlante to take a 12-0 lead.
The Gophers used a strong ground game to continue to have the upper hand the rest of the first half. They scored a second-quarter touchdown on a 4-yard run by LaPlante, and Skare booted a 41-yard field goal as Chatfield led 22-0 at halftime.
Neis had 148 yards rushing in the first half. He finished with 152 on 21 carries. Justin Viss, who scored Chatfield's only second-half touchdown on a 20-yard run in the fourth quarter, totaled 150 yards, also on 21 carries.
The Gophers rumbled to 345 yards on the ground. Skare completed 3 of 6 passes for 142 yards, giving Chatfield a 487-185 advantage in scrimmage yards. It also ran off 62 offensive plays to 39 for the Cardinals.
Sheldon Knutson led L-A with 47 yards rushing and 57 receiving. He scored on a 2-yard run and a 50-yard pass from Nate Reps.
"We never could three-and-out them," Lewiston-Altura coach Brent Olson said. "They have great athletes and when they needed a big play, a different guy would make one. They are an outstanding team.
"It's always hard to put into words what you feel when your team is eliminated from the playoffs. This year's seniors really stepped up and set a high bar, that will be a challenge to our younger players in the program."
Chatfield 29, Lewiston-Altura 12