Silver Sailboat stays in Port

Football team finds new scoring weapons in rolling at league rival Cedarburg

THE SILVER SAILBOAT is staying in Port Washington after the high school football team dominated Cedarburg on the road on Friday, 46-20. Posing with the traveling trophy after the game were seniors (front from left) Zach Sharpe, Seth Perez, Jason Gourley, Tristan Griswold, Justin Wicke (24), Devon Green, (back row) Ray Bensen, Beau Fleischmann, Deron Spicer, Jacob Lippe, Brandon Kelling, Devon Edwards and Adam Baierl. Photo by Mitch Maersch
By 
MITCH MAERSCH
Ozaukee Press staff

It’s a lineman’s dream, and on Friday Tristan Griswold didn’t need to fall asleep to see it happen.

The Port Washington High School senior scored a touchdown that helped shift momentum at North Shore Conference rival Cedarburg.

After taking a 7-0 lead thanks to a Zach Sharpe interception on the sideline that led to a 20-yard touchdown run by Deron Spicer, the Bulldogs began to move the ball. After advancing 45 yards, Port’s defense turned the tables during a fumble at their own 22 yard-line.

“As soon as (defensive lineman) Nolan Makoutz hit the running back, I immediately saw the ball in the air. It landed straight in my hands,” a pumped Griswold said after the game.

“I thought for a second, I was like, ‘Man this really happened,’ so I started booking as fast as I can. I started running. I just wouldn’t stop. I knew I had the greatest guys on my back. They covered me the whole way.”

Seventy-eight yards later, Port had a 13-0 lead.

“I was able to get that TD, and I was the happiest man out there. As a lineman, it’s the greatest. I feel so high right now. It is the best,” Griswold said.

That helped the Pirates to a 46-20 blowout and maintain possession of the Silver Sailboat, the traveling trophy between the two teams.

Stars Jacob Lippe and Deron Spicer had a stellar offensive game again, and the Pirates unveiled another potent weapon.

Junior wideout Mitchell Niemeyer began the second half with a 90-yard kickoff return for a touchdown, and less than five minutes later caught a 39-yard touchdown pass.

Niemeyer had nearly broken a return earlier in the game. This time, he wouldn’t be denied.

“The blockers were there, made the cut and got to the sideline and beat the kicker,” he said.

“It was pretty much the same play. There was no way I was letting the kicker tackle me twice.”

“Return wise, we knew he would have a gear,” coach John Bunyan said. “I didn’t know he’d have a second gear like that. He did real well.”

Teams had been trying to kick away from Lippe, who can score from anywhere on the field, and perhaps but not limited to the parking lot and adjacent roadways, and now Port has another threat.

“We work hard on our kickoff return because it is a weapon. We’ve had some great field position out of it,” Bunyan said.

The Pirates built a 26-0 first-half lead before Cedarburg erased its goose egg.

Up 13-0 after Griswold’s score, the Bulldogs intercepted a pass from backup quarterback Ethan Baierl inside their own 10 yard-line.

The Pirates’ defense answered by stuffing a run for no gain, followed by Spicer nearly earning a safety on a one-armed quarterback sack, pulling Jack Leair into the end zone.

An incomplete pass led to a punt, and Port went to work from Cedarburg’s 41. Spicer broke a tackle in the backfield and stormed for 27 yards, and Lippe ran two times for seven yards each, scoring a touchdown on the second.

On the ensuing possession, after stuffing the Bulldogs on fourth and 1 on Port’s 32-yard line, the Pirates scored in two plays. Lippe took a shotgun snap, sprinted left, broke two tackles and flew down the sideline for a 73-yard score.

“Deron made an awesome block on the outside (and) the line blocked awesome. I found the hole, I hit it, broke one tackle and I was gone,” Lippe said.

Taking a 26-7 halftime lead wasn’t enough, however.

“We emphasized, hey, let’s come out of half here and let’s act like it’s zero-zero and go down the field and score,” Bunyan said.

Niemeyer took it to heart and scored on the kickoff return.

Defensive back Brandon Kelling then picked off a bomb, running stride for stride with a Bulldog receiver. Lippe followed with a rollout pass to streaking Niemeyer for a 39-yard score.

Port’s kicker later got into the act, catching the first pass of his career across the middle for 20 yards. Will Stopczynski snagged the ball with his hands and slid to the ground to move the chains on third and 9.

“That was awesome. I saw the guy, I’m like, I got this. I know I can run this route. I just went for it,” he said. “(Ethan Baierl) gave me a great throw, connected really good.”

Port did have a little trouble securing the snap from center. Four fumbles led to one Bulldogs’ recovery.

“That was frustrating me in a big way. We need to clean up some of that stuff,” Bunyan said.

Now winners of three straight games, the Pirates (3-1) on Friday host NSC foe Hartford (3-1), which last Thursday knocked Slinger (3-1) from the ranks of the undefeated with a 23-13 home victory. All teams are tied for second in the league behind Homestead (4-0).

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Wisconsin’s largest paid circulation community weekly newspaper. Serving Port Washington, Saukville, Grafton, Fredonia, Belgium, as well as Ozaukee County government. Locally owned and printed in Port Washington, Wisconsin.

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