Pirates stop streak at 10 years

Lippe’s special play on special teams helps Port finally top Whitefish Bay
By 
MITCH MAERSCH
Ozaukee Press staff

The bus ride home from Whitefish Bay on Friday included open windows, music and dancing.

Port Washington’s High School football team was justified in its jubilation. They just ended a decade-long losing streak to the Blue Dukes and won the opening game on their new field turf.

The Pirates shut down defending North Shore Conference co-champions, 15-8, evening their record to 1-1.

Port’s defense held the Blue Dukes to 4-for-15 passing for 30 yards. They had 172 yards rushing but were held in check.

“We stopped their sweep, and that was a big key to the game for us,” coach John Bunyan said.

“It was a good win for our program.”

The Pirates struck first with one of their most potent weapons. While senior all-conference wide receiver Jacob Lippe has consistently drawn double coverage early this season, the NSC first team utility player found a different way to score.

The Pirates set up a wall, and Lippe took a punt back 61 yards to break the ice.

“He’s a threat on a kickoff return and a punt return. Every time we get the ball in his hands, good things happen,” Bunyan said.

Senior quarterback Adam Baierl again played well, finding receiver Mitchell Niemeyer on a play-action pass from 11 yards out in the third quarter that turned out to be the game winner.

Late in the game, however, Baierl sustained a small fracture in his fibula and will likely miss at least a couple of weeks.

His younger brother Ethan filled in well, completing one of two passes for 26 yards to Niemeyer.

“We needed a couple of first downs to run out the clock and he did a phenomenal job,” Bunyan said.

Niemeyer ended with five catches for 52 yards and a score. Adam Baierl extended plays by running 15 times for 62 yards, and Deron Spicer ran 14 times for 41.

Bay scored in the third quarter on a 53-yard counter play that caught Port off guard.

The Pirates jumped offside on the point-after attempt, which set Bay up to go for two.

Those were the only blemishes on a sharp defensive night.

“Our kids were well prepared and did a great job,” Bunyan said.

He praised Ray Bensen for his effort, moving from inside to outside linebacker.

He shut down the Blue Dukes’ sweep by knocking the guard off the blocking pattern.

Inside linebacker Deron Edwards had “a breakout game” in knocking down a handful of passes and caught runners from behind, and fellow inside linebacker Spicer played well, Bunyan said.

For Bay, Patrick Nau ran 23 times for 150 yards and a score.

Adam Baierl was the second offensive injury Port has sustained this season, after tight end Dylan Niehoff broke his leg in the first week and could miss the entire season.

Port hosts 0-2 Nicolet at 7 p.m. Friday in its next attempt to win while staying healthy.

“They’ve got athletes and like to be explosive. We’ll have to match skill with skill,” Bunyan said.

A little Pirates football history

Port’s last win over Whitefish Bay came on Oct. 12, 2007, in its homecoming game, a wild 35-34, double-overtime thriller that clinched a postseason berth for the Pirates.

In the second overtime, Pirate Anthony Kaske ran 10 yards for a touchdown, and Matt Wood made the kick. Bay scored on a pass and faked the point-after kick. Pirate Erik Mersereau pressured the throw, forcing an incompletion.

Bunyan was the offensive coordinator under then coach Tim Greisch.

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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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