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Football: Panthers shut down young Mariners

Silver Bay junior Mason Ollman fights his way through a scrum of tacklers during the Mariners 30-0 loss to South Ridge on Friday, Sept. 28. (Jamey Malcomb/News-Chronicle)

While the Silver Bay defense was able to hold South Ridge's high-powered running game in check for large parts of the Sept. 28 game, the Mariner offense failed to find its footing in a 30-0 shutout in Silver Bay.

Early in the game, it looked like the Panthers would run away with the game after senior Joe Janke scored from 70 yards out and junior Matt Clark scored on a 16-yard run, making the score 16-0 late in the first quarter.

The Mariner defense stiffened in the second quarter, forcing a turnover and holding South Ridge scoreless until midway through the third quarter, when Elias Tuominen scored on a 47-yard scamper. Tyler Anderson added another score in the fourth quarter to complete the rout.

While the defense was able to recover from the early onslaught, the offense couldn't turn the game around, amassing only 121 yards of total offense and just 67 yards on the ground.

Senior Peyton Westerlund had just 39 yards on the ground to lead Silver Bay.

South Ridge was able to put up some gaudy rushing stats by the end of the night, with Janke amassing 205 yards on 23 carries, and the team accruing 375 yards on the ground.

Silver Bay (1-4) is suffering through a tough season. With only three seniors and three of the best 9-man teams in northeastern Minnesota — South Ridge, Mountain Iron-Buhl and Cook County — on its schedule, there were bound to be some growing pains.

However, coach Ward Kaiser believes the experience the team is getting this season with help in the next two seasons as the younger Mariner players develop.

Silver Bay will play its homecoming game at 7 p.m. Friday, Oct. 5, against Hill City/Northland. While the Mariners still have some challenges ahead — Ely, in particular, could be an obstacle — the toughest part of the season is over. Silver Bay could pick up another win or two in the final three weeks of the season.

South Ridge 16-0-6-8—30

Silver Bay 0-0-0-0—0

SR — Joe Janke 70 run (Janke run)

SR — Matt Clark 16 run (Jaxson Bennett pass from Janke)

SR — Elias Tuominen 47 run (conversion failed)

SR — Tyler Anderson 13 run (Clark run)

Jamey Malcomb

Jamey Malcomb has been a reporter for the Pine Journal since October 2018. He previously worked as a reporter for the Lake County News-Chronicle from 2015-2018. Malcomb is a native of North Carolina and holds a bachelor's degree in English and history from the George Washington University and a master's degree in education from George Mason University in Fairfax, Va. Malcomb moved to Minnesota in July 2012 and worked as a sports clerk and news assistant at the Duluth News Tribune. 

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