Everything was clicking for Cascade’s football team, Oct. 16, as the Cougars dominated Wilton at home, 55-0, in round one of the 2020 playoffs. From the opening whistle, the Cougars made it clear that they were not looking past Wilton, scoring 48 points in the first half. Junior quarterback Justin Roling was a perfect 6-of-6 on the night, spreading it out to four different receivers for 200 yards and four touchdowns.
Coach Tim Frake said, “Last Friday night was a little surprising how dominating a victory it was for our football team. It was by far the best defensive effort of the season which resulted in a shutout, creating six turnovers, and setting up our offense for success.”
Starting on their own 42, Roling passed to senior Jackson McAleer down the sidelines for 42 yards putting the Cougars inside the Beavers 20-yard line. Two plays later sophomore running back Jack Menster ran it up the gut for a touchdown. Jose Nava hit the extra point and the Cougars were up 7-0 less than two minutes into the game.
After the defense forced a three-and-out Menster returned the ball to mid-field for great field position. Three plays later Roling tossed a swing pass to junior Tanner Simon who took it around the edge, evading Beaver tacklers for a 38-yard touchdown. Another successful extra-point kick by Nava and the Cougars led 14-0 midway into the first quarter.
Neither team was able to move the ball on their next possession. After a penalty made it third-and-13, Simon intercepted the Beaver pass for a 35-yard touchdown and the Cougars were up 21-0 with 3:31 still to go in the first quarter.
Following the kickoff, the Cougar defense forced their first of six turnovers. They took quick advantage of it as Roling hit senior Cael McDermott in the endzone for another touchdown, up 28-0.
The defense again did their part forcing another three-and-out. A short punt gave the Cougars great field position on the Beaver 28, but a fumble by Menster on first down gave the ball right back to Wilton. On third-and-short, senior lineman Ted Weber sacked the Beaver quarterback who fumbled. On the next play, Menster ran it up the middle to the Beaver one-yard line before time expired in the first quarter. The following play Menster ran it in for another Cougar touchdown, 35-0.
On the next Wilton possession, Weber recorded his second sack of the night forcing another punt by the Beavers.
Starting on their own 27, the Cougars, with Menster running the ball, got to their 40-yard line for a first down. On the next play, Roling hit sophomore tight end Luke Ruggeberg over the middle for a 60-yard touchdown, the first of his two on the night, and a 42-0 lead with seven minutes in the half.
On third-and-10, sophomore Ruggeberg intercepted a Beaver pass returning it to the Beaver 32. On the next play, Menster ran it up the middle for another Cougar touchdown, 48-0.
The defense forced another three-and-out to end the first half of play. The Cougars scored one more touchdown in the third quarter on a throw from Roling to Ruggeberg making it 55-0.
“Offensively, we were about as efficient as we could be only running twenty-four plays. Our biggest area of weakness at this point in the season is making sure we take care of the football. This Friday night the stakes get a little higher and the competition a little better, but I expect our team to be excited and ready to compete,” said Frake after the game.
Individual stats include: rushing — Menster 10-for-94 and three touchdowns, Simon 1-for-3, Cass Hoffman 1-for-2, Will Hosch 1-for-minus 2; passing — Roling 6-for-6 for 200 yards and four touchdowns; receiving — Luke Ruggeberg 2-for-92 and two touchdowns, Simon 2-for-44 and one touchdown, Cael McDermott 1-for-22 and one touchdown; tackles — Casey Koppes five (two solo), Weber four (two), Simon 3.5 (three), Cody Kremer 3.5 (two), Menster three (three), Isaac Delerosa 2.5, Cass Hoffman two (one), Mason Otting, McAleer, Luke Ruggeberg and Cole McDermott 1.5, Keagan Lamey, Carson Staner, Juan Alvarado, Will Hosch and Cade Rausch one, Nava, Evan Foust, Gabe Lange, Kaleb Topping, Mitchell Bergfeld, Angel Moncada and Trevor Finzel 0.5; interceptions — Ruggeberg, Casey Koppes and Simon one (one for touchdown).