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Tiger football team in must-win situation after loss

The Northwestern High School football team's quest for a postseason berth became much more difficult following a 42-35 loss to the Barron Golden Bears Friday night.

The Northwestern High School football team's quest for a postseason berth became much more difficult following a 42-35 loss to the Barron Golden Bears Friday night.

Northwestern, 2-4 overall and 1-3 in the Heart O' North Conference, must win its remaining three regular season games to qualify for the WIAA playoffs. The Tigers host Cumberland (5-1, 3-1) this week, travel to Hayward (1-3, 1-5) on Oct. 7 and then finish off the season with a home game against Ladysmith (3-1, 3-3) on Oct. 14.

Barron, which was winless in conference play before Friday, scored six touchdowns against the Tigers in a game that was decided in the fourth quarter.

Northwestern took a 14-6 lead in the first quarter after a pair of touchdown runs by Justin Alexson, but Barron tied the game at 14-14 by the end of the quarter with an 80-yard kick return by Jason Balts.

The Golden Bears scored on a 14-yard pass in the second quarter to take a 21-14 lead, and the game was then quiet until a flurry of scoring in the fourth quarter.

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Alexson started the fourth quarter with his third TD of the game, running the ball in from 5 yards. Barron answered with a long pass to reclaim the lead, 28-21, but Mike Naumann tied the game again with an 80-yard kick return for Northwestern.

The teams traded touchdowns again moments later when Barron broke away for a 65-yard run and Northwestern's Mark Pooler carried the ball in from 3 yards. Jordan Orme's kick gave the Tigers a 35-34 lead, but Barron closed out the game with another long touchdown run -- 74 yards -- to win 42-35.

Alexson led the Tigers with 245 yards rushing and three touchdowns. Pooler had 121 yards on 19 carries for one touchdown.

Northwestern 14 0 0 12 -- 35

Barron 14 7 0 21 -- 42

First quarter

N -- Justin Alexson 5-yard run (Jordan Orme kick).

B -- Mitch Nelson 4-yard run.

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N -- Alexson 6-yard run (Orme kick).

B -- Jason Balts 80-yard kick return (Neil Rasmussen pass to Austin Haugestuen).

Second quarter

B -- Rasmussen 14-yard pass to Isaiah Frandsen (Michael Prine kick).

Fourth quarter

N -- Alexson 5-yard run (Orme kick).

B -- Rasmussen 65-yard pass to Frandsen (Prine kick).

N -- Mike Naumann 80-yard kick return (Orme kick).

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B -- Nelson 65-yard run.

N -- Mark Pooler 3-yard run (Orme kick).

B -- Nelson 74-yard run (Rasmussen pass to Haugestuen).

Related Topics: FOOTBALL
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