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WATCH NOW: High school football--Onalaska pulls away late to down Logan

From the Sports collection: Catch up on Friday night football series
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Coach Tom Yashinsky and the Onalaska High School football team knew the end of the team's shutout streak was inevitable.

Friday's 42-18 MVC victory over Logan at Swanson Field showed that Onalaska's defense can take some early punches and still hold strong.

Junior running back Brady Kuhn rushed for 128 yards and three touchdowns, junior quarterback Adam Skifton threw for a touchdown and ran for another, and the Hilltoppers (5-0, 3-0) closed the game with a 21-0 run in the final 16 minutes to spoil homecoming night at Logan (2-3, 1-2).

Although the 170-minute streak of keeping opponents off the scoreboard came to an end in the second quarter, Yashinksy said his defense's resolve down the stretch was crucial in the win.

"We needed that game because we needed an ego check," Yashinsky said after the game. "I thought we defended the run game pretty well."

Logan sought to slow down Onalaska with an unhurried offensive pace, utilizing the entire play clock on each snap. Following a scoreless first quarter, Kuhn took a pitch from Skifton on fourth-and-goal from the 1-yard line and reached the end zone to put the Hilltoppers up 7-0. The Rangers tied it up on their ensuing drive, as junior quarterback Johnny Leaver orchestrated the touchdown drive and finished it off on a four-yard keeper.

Skifton connected with junior wide receiver Evan Anderson in the back of the end-zone on 4th-and-8 to give Onalaska the lead again, but Logan kicker Danil Roberts cut into the deficit by nailing a 33-yard field goal just before the halftime break. 

Kuhn found the end zone for a second time on the Hilltoppers' opening drive of the second half via an eight-yard rush. The junior said the game plan called for a heavy workload from Onalaska's running backs, and he was happy to deliver behind his offensive line.

"We knew we were going to run the ball a lot, and we wanted to get the O(ffensive)-line working," Kuhn said. "They stepped up and played a great game."

The Rangers took advantage of a Hilltopper fumble midway through the third quarter when Leaver netted his second rushing touchdown. Logan converted the two-point conversion to make it 21-18 with 4:16 left in the quarter.

Onalaska went three-and-out on its next drive, but Logan senior Eli Reynolds muffed the punt return and the Hilltoppers' Aiden Sommerfield recovered the fumble near midfield. On its next three drives, Onalaska scored touchdowns to pull away from the Rangers, who turned it over on downs after each score.

Kuhn, Skifton and senior running back Cornell Banks ran for touchdowns in the late 21-0 run, and the Hilltoppers' defense shut down Leaver and Reynolds. Senior defensive end Jon Knickrehm said holding Logan's top rushers to a combined 128 yards on 29 carries was a victory in and of itself.

"They're both very fast," Knickrehm said. "We had to adjust and plug the insides, and that helped to contain them in the second half."

Skifton finished 11-for-16 passing for 162 yards, and senior wide receiver Nicky Odom caught four passes for 54 yards. Kuhn was also the Hilltoppers' top receiver with 56 yards, tallying 184 total yards in the victory.

Leaver passed for 60 yards and totaled 79 rushing yards on 16 attempts. Reynolds rushed 13 times for 49 yards in the Rangers' loss.

Onalaska will host an undefeated showdown against MVC-newcomer Reedsburg (5-0, 3-0) next Friday. Logan visits Baraboo (4-1, 3-0) on Friday as the Rangers will look to avoid a three-game slide.

Andrew Polk can be reached at or via Twitter @apolk17


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