By Rodney Mattrisch
Nothing beats Friday nights and a high school football game. Two neighboring communities with a historic rivalry can make that game even better. That was the story as the Panthers from Greendale took the 5 minute trip north to play the Hustlin Hawks of Greenfield. Even though the shades of green are different, the game remains the same. At the end of the game, it would be the young guns wearing the Kelly Green taking it to the Forest Green team as Greendale won easily over Greenfield by a score of 42-3 in what was a rather lopsided game. The game started out as though it was going to be a battle as both teams were feeling each other out, but then the Panthers and their high powered offense led by sophomore quarterback Josh Ringelberg took control and never looked back. Greenfield on the other hand spent most of the night self destructing as they committed 5 turnovers, which usually is a recipe for disaster. The Hawks have not beaten Greendale since 2003 so nothing would have been more rewarding then for Greenfield to stop that trend.
The Panthers would receive first to start the game. After a nice little return, Greendale would begin their first drive of the game from their 30. The Hawks sure looked like they did their homework as they stuffed Greendale forcing them to punt going 3 and out.
After the kick, it would now be Greenfield's turn for their first drive of the night. They would be lining their wishbone offense up on their 32. Behind a huge offensive line, they would squeeze off 6-plays before eventually being forced to punt back to the Panthers.
With the help of a penalty on the return, Greendale found themselves starting on their own 10-yard line. The Hawks continued where they left off as they stuffed the first two running plays of Greendale. Then it started! The Panthers busted out their revered passing attack behind the arm of Josh Ringelberg who guided the team the entire length of the field for the game's first score on a 4-yard run by running back Jake Zywicki. This would cap off an impressive 12-play 90-yard drive. Senior Peter Pekar would convert the point after making the score 7-0 with 1:49 left in the 1st quarter.
After the ensuing kick, the Hawks would take over from their 18. They would resume their ground and pound game putting 8-plays together before eventually being forced to punt from their 49.
After a nice punt by Greenfield's Joey Hannah, Greendale would again find themselves pinned deep as they would begin this drive from their own 5. Right off the bat, Greendale would go to the air as Ringelberg would find sophomore wide out Cody Kmetz for a huge 85-yard pass play taking the ball all the way to Greenfield's 10. Two plays later, Ringelberg would connect with junior Mitchell Brees for an 8-yard scoring strike. Pekar made his kick and Greendale now increased their lead to a score of 14-0 with 9:18 left in the 1st half.
After the Hawks return, they would find themselves starting from their 12. This time instead of their ground and pound game, they decided to take to the air. They would end up having to punt going 3 and out as all of the passes fell incomplete.
Ringelberg would now lead his offense back out onto the field and start from Greenfield's 47. This time Panther Head Coach Rob Stoltz would elect to keep it on the ground as Ringelberg and Zwicki would share the work load. Six plays later, Greendale ended up in the end zone again as Zywicki would carry it in from 1-yard out. Pekar's kick sailed between the uprights as the Panthers forged ahead by a score of 21-0 with 6:05 left in the half.
On the ensuing kick, Greenfield looked to have a decent return but a penalty would cancel that out forcing them to have to start from their own 15. This time the Hawks looked like they got the party started on offense. That would come to an abrupt end for on their 7th play of the drive, they would be intercepted by freshmen linebacker Tristian Pipp who returned it 32-yards to the Greenfield 33.
Five plays later, Ringelberg would take it himself from 3-yards out for Greendale's 4th touchdown of the game. This time the kick would be blocked making the score 27-0 with just 1:27 left in the half.
The Hawks would find themselves starting from their 20 by way of a touchback on the kick. Looking to get some points on the board before half, things started out good as their quarterback would keep it on an option and found himself racing down the field for a nice 40-yard run, but disaster would strike as a Panther defender knocked the ball lose of which Greendale's David Michaels would recover on his 40-yard line.
With 1:14 left in the 1st half, Greendale would take to the field to see if they could reach the end zone one more time. Knowing that time was short, Greendale would elect to fill the air with footballs. Six plays later, Ringelberg would find yet another weapon in his arsenal in Nate Miller over the middle for a 31-yard scoring strike. The Panthers would line up for 2 for the extra point of which was converted as Ringelberg would take it himself. The score would now read 35-0 with :15 seconds left in the first half.
The Hawks would run 1-play before the half finally came to an end.
Looking at a 35-point deficit to start the 2nd half, the Hawks knew that they had their work cut out for them. They first needed to stop the running clock because they would need all of it to get back in this game. After the Panther kick, they would start their quest from their 20-yard line. Three plays later, however, disaster would hit them as they fumbled of which Brees would recover for Greendale.
Looking at a short 33-yard field, Greendale would begin their first drive of the 2nd half. This time, It would only take them 5-plays to reach pay dirt as Ringelberg would take it in from 6-yards out. Pekar would make the kick making the score a rather lopsided 42-0 with 7:34 left in the 3rd quarter.
With the clock ticking away, Greenfield would begin their next drive from their 23. This time they would string together 9-plays taking the ball all the way to Greendale's 20 before looking at a 4th and long. In an attempt to get some kind of points on the board, they would bring their field goal unit out on the field to attempt a 27-yarder. Hannah's kick would sail wide left resulting in Greendale taking over possession of the football on their 20.
Backup quarterback David Wood was now in for Greendale. The Panthers would run 2-plays before misconnecting on a handoff resulting in Greendale's only turnover of the game.
That turnover would cost the Panthers 3-points as the Hawks would have to settle for a 30-yard field goal by Hannah making the score 42-3 with 10:00 now left in the game.
After the ensuing kick, Greendale would bring their 2nd offense back out on the field. They would eventually be forced to punt back to the Hawks.
When it rains, it pours as Greenfield would fumble on their first play giving the ball right back to the Panthers on the Hawk's 29.
Greendale would end up turning the ball over on downs at Greenfield's 22.
With the game clock at 3:32, The Hawks would attempt to make one last ditch effort to add to their total. Unfortunately, that would not happen for on their 4th play of the drive, they would fumble for the 4th time in the game. Greendale would not even need to run a play as the clock finally came to rest at zeros.
The final score would be, Greendale 42 - Greenfield 3. In the end, it all came down to execution and turnovers. Greendale's young guns executed their offense perfectly committing just one turn over while Greenfield had trouble making plays to keep drives alive and committed 5 turnovers. Greendale will now move to 2-0 while Greenfield drops to 0-2. Next week The Panthers will finally return home to host Pius IX while Greenfield will take to the road to play Whitnall. Both games are scheduled to start at 7 p.m.