Frazee to host Barnesville on Wednesday night
By Chad Koenen
For the first time in nearly two years, the Frazee skyline was aglow near the Frazee-Vergas High School.
After an expansive remodeling project at the football field and track, the Frazee Hornets hosted the Park Rapids Panthers in a night full of festivities and time to celebrate long before the opening kick sailed through the air.
“They were jacked up and they burnt themselves out a bit in the second half,” said head coach Russ Hackel. “Now that can be put aside a bit more and we can focus on some details that we think are important.”
With the NDSU Gold Star marching band in attendance, the Frazee Hornets officially cut the ribbon on the new football field prior to the game. The NDSU marching band provided music throughout the night, including a halftime show, while they played pep band music with the Frazee-Vergas High School pep band prior to the start of the game.
The Hornets wasted little time in getting on the scoreboard on Friday night as Brady Crabtree scored the first of his five touchdowns on a 37-yard dash down the sidelines. The extra point was good to make the score 7-0 and give the home side another reason to cheer on the festive night.
After a safety on the ensuing Park Rapids drive gave the Hornets a 9-0 lead, Crabtree again found the end zone, this time from 25-yards out to give Frazee a 16-0 lead at the end of the first quarter.
Park Rapids cut the score to 16-6 in the second quarter when they scored on a 9-yard pass, before Crabtree found the end zone for the third time in the first half when he scored on a 54-yard touchdown run to make the score 23-6 in favor of Frazee.
Hackel credited the work ethic of Crabtree who has become the focal point of the team this season. While Crabtree rushed for 320 yards on 25 carries yards and 5 touchdowns, Hackel said the offensive line has played well this season and Tyler Moe has done a tremendous job of opening up holes to give Crabtree a chance to get into open space.
“He is the staple for what we want as a running back,” said Hackel of Crabtree. “He has worked hard for everything he has gotten. He has put in the work in the offseason lifting weights.”
The Panthers scored another touchdown of their own on a 4-yard pass to make the score 23-13 in favor of the Hornets at halftime.
Park Rapids and Frazee traded touchdowns in the third quarter, which included another Crabtree touchdown run to make the score 29-20 and set up a wild fourth quarter.
In the fourth quarter alone the two teams combined for 30 points,
including 20 points in the final 3:49 minutes of action. Park Rapids took their first lead of the game by a score of 35-29 with just 3:49 left in the game, before Crabtree found the end zone for the fifth time in the game on an 85-yard run across the new football field to give the Hornets a 36-35 lead following the extra point kick.
Unfortunately, the Panthers answered right back to retake the lead by a score of 43-36 following the two-point conversion.
The Hornets were able to quickly work the ball down the field and set up a play on the 4-yard line and the game on the line. Unfortunately, the Panthers were able to keep Crabtree out of the end zone when Frazee called his number once again as Park Rapids was able to come away with a 43-36 win.
In addition to Crabtree’s 320 yards on the ground, Moe rushed 10 times for 77 yards and Adam Vigen rushed 3 times for 3 yards.
The Hornets are currently 3-4 on the season and will wrap up their regular season on Wednesday night when they host top ranked and undefeated Barnesville. Frazee comes into the game averaging 29.4 points per game on offense, while surrendering 19.6 points per game on defense.
Barnesville comes into the game with a perfect 7-0 record and average 44.3 points per game on offense, while giving up just 5 points per game on defense. Last week the Trojans defeated Crookston by a score of 66-0 and have posted three straight shutouts against Warroad, Park Rapids and Crookston.
Kick off is scheduled for 7 p.m. on Wednesday night.