After missing the playoffs last season, West Fargo High School has earned itself another week of football in November.
The Packers notched a 17-14 win over No. 3-ranked Fargo Shanley on Wednesday night, which was senior night for West Fargo. The upset not only ended the Deacons four-game winning streak, but earned the Packers a spot in the playoffs.
The win over Shanley improved the Packers to 4-4 overall and 4-2 in the Eastern Dakota Conference.
West Fargo quarterback Dustin Mertz gave the Packers an early lead with a 19-yard rushing touchdown. Landon Pritchard tacked on the extra point in the 8-play drive to make it 7-0 with eight minutes to go in the first quarter.
Shanley got on the board with three minutes remaining in the opening quarter thanks to a 30-yard field goal by Emmet Kenney.
West Fargo running back Joel McIntosh marched 42 yards before he was pushed out of bounds in the Packers following possession. The Deacons defense kept West Fargo out of the end zone, as Pritchard capped the drive with a 31-yard field goal to give West Fargo a 10-3 lead heading into the second quarter.
After the Packers took over, a high snap resulted in a 24-yard loss en route to a turnover on downs. Shanley took over with under two minutes to go in the first half. Kenney capped the drive with his second field goal of the game. His 33-yard kick made it 10-6 heading into the second half.
Three minutes into the half, the Deacons recorded their fifth fumble of the contest. West Fargo's Marcus Gulley caused the turnover that put the ball back in Packers hands and led to a score.
Mertz scrambled for 32 yards and beat two Deacons defenders to record his second rushing touchdown. Pritchard's kick gave the Packers a 17-6 lead with 7 minutes, 51 seconds to go in the third quarter.
Shanley was back in the game on the Deacons next possession at the six-minute mark in the final quarter. Mattern fired a 26-yard touchdown pass to senior Quincy Smith. Aidan DeVine's 2-point conversion was good to make it 17-14.
West Fargo's Birrenkott put the nail in the coffin with an interception in the final minutes of the contest.
West Fargo has a road game against Grand Forks Central (0-7, 0-5 EDC) at 7 p.m. Friday, Oct. 25. It will be the regular-season finale for the Packers.
Sheyenne takes over driver's seat in EDC football with win over Davies
FARGO — West Fargo Sheyenne put itself in the drivers’ seat in the Eastern Dakota Conference with a 35-26 football victory over Fargo Davies on Wednesday at Brant-Quamme Field at Fargo South High School.
The Mustangs got help from their cross-town rival West Fargo as the Packers topped Fargo Shanley on Wednesday allowing 7-1, 6-1 EDC Sheyenne to jump to the front of the line. The Mustangs lone loss came at Shanley on Oct. 4. And they close the season against Fargo South next Friday.
The Mustangs offensive line and rushing attack overwhelmed the Eagles defense as they rushed for 278 yards. They converted 5-of-9 third down tries and 3-of-4 fourth downs as they found paydirt on five of their seven drives.
Sheyenne running back Zach Rodgers started the scoring for the Mustangs in the first quarter. He ran through a gaping hole up the middle, spun off a defender and ran to paydirt for a 25-yard touchdown to push his team ahead 7-6.
The Eagles took the lead in the first as Satter intercepted a pass by WFS sophomore quarterback Grant Warkenthein near the 35-yard line and returned it back up the right sideline to the 1-yard line. Sam Moser pounded it in from 1-yard out.
Davies and Sheyenne traded touchdowns on four straight drives in the first half. The Eagles struck first and the Mustangs scored. Then Ethan Entze scored a 5-yard touchdown for Davies, and Sheynne answered right back with a 2-yard run out of the wildcat by North Dakota State commit Tyler Terhark.
But an interception by Sheyenne’s Matt Wegner led to a 16-yard touchdown pass from Warkenthein to Terhark and the Mustangs took a 21-12 lead into halftime.
Terhark beat his marker with a double move and laid out to catch the touchdown pass in the front left corner of the end zone. The Mustangs’ sophomore quarterback called the play himself in the huddle and trusted his receiver to go make a play.
The Eagles came out of halftime aggressive, attempting and recovering an onside kick. They drove down and scored on a 2-yard run by Hartness and cut the Eagles lead to 21-18.
The Mustangs answered on the next drive with a 37-yard touchdown run by Barika Kpeenu and took control of the game 28-18.
Terhark’s third touchdown — a four-yard run out of the wildcat formation with 10:49 to go all but put the game out of reach for the Mustangs at 35-18. The score came on play after Sheyenne forced a turnover on downs.
Friday, Oct. 25's contests will be the regular-season finales for both teams.