August 25, 2023 at 9:50 a.m.
Panthers lose early lead, game to Fennimore
Iowa-Grant had the upper hand for the first half with a 12-8 lead but Fennimore had its way the second.
The Golden Eagles found a higher gear and went on to keep the “milk can” with a 30-12 win. The game was the non-conference opener for both squads.
The milk can is a “trophy” both teams have played for since 1970. It was created by two Korean War buddies who went on to coach at both schools.
“We came out fast and played physical in the first half,” said Iowa-Grant coach Zack Raimer. . “We executed out game plans and went in with the lead.”
But Fennimore took over with a third quarter score then punched in two more in the final frame.
“Fennimore came out a little more physical in the second half and controlled the trenches,” Raimer said. “They were able to pound the ball.”
Trentin Hill ran for 67 yards on 10 carries and scored three times for the Eagles. Mathew Winch added another score with eight yards on three attempts
I-G veteran quarterback Cycle Steffl locked in with Ashton Schmitz and Kalen Koch for two passing touchdowns as he completed 12 of 21 for 144 yards.
Schmitz caught six passes for 62 yards and Koch had one big grab for a 71 yard score.
Gavin Hinderman and Boden Brokopp also caught passes. Hinderman caught one for three and Brokopp two for eight yards.
Steffl was also active with the ball in his hands with 67 yards on 13 carries. Dawson Reid also ran the ball six times for 10 total yards.
“Cyle has been playing in this system for three years now and has really learned it well,” Raimer said. “His understanding of our style of football is apparent this year.”
Defensively Hinderman had 12 tackles, Brokopp 11 and Schmitz 10 to lead the Panthers.
Iowa-Grant moves into its second non-conference test this Friday when they host New Lisbon.
“They will be another hard opponent,” Raimer said. “We have to work on our schemes and get better each day.”