Newell-Fonda reaches semis

MARCUS – Third-ranked Newell-Fonda earned the long-awaited revenge it was looking for here Friday night.

In a rematch of last year’s 8-man state quarterfinal, the unbeaten Mustangs (12-0 overall) were able to turn the tide this time around, recording a 46-38 victory over No. 7 Marcus-Meriden-Cleghorn.

Senior Brady Bohe delivered 151 yards and two touchdowns – from two and 23 yards out – on 28 carries for Newell-Fonda. Classmate Gabe Podraza also ran 22 times for 143 yards, including a 60-yard jaunt to paydirt.

Podraza finished 7-for-14 through the air for 218 yards, with three TDs and three picks.

The Mustangs led from start to finish against last year’s state champions. After the Eagles (10-2) trimmed the deficit to just one point midway through the fourth quarter, Newell-Fonda tacked on an insurance score.

“I was very happy for our players and assistant coaches, who have done a tremendous job,” said N-F head coach Brian Wilken. “Our motivation started this (unbeaten season), but our heart keeps it going. I’m happy for our whole program, school and community. It’s a total team effort.”

Making its first-ever trip to the UNI-Dome, District 2 champion Newell-Fonda will now face No. 1 Exira/Elk Horn-Kimballton (11-0) in an 8-man semifinal on Thursday at12:06 p.m. in Cedar Falls. The Spartans advanced with a 41-0 shutout over ninth-ranked Glidden-Ralston.