Packer Football: Austin vs. Winona

Andrew Schumacher

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On October 17th, 2018, the Austin Packer football team was preparing for a home game that would be their last regular season game of the year. For seniors, it would be an emotional one because it was their last home football game ever as an Austin Packer. To get a better idea of the night I
talked to Senior quarterback and captain Nate Murphy. “We came into the game confident knowing we had nothing to lose playing a more decorated
program in Winona.”  The game had no playoff implications because of the fact that Winona is in the class below the Packers but the Packers weren’t going to let up on the gas. “Once we got playing, it was obvious that we could play with them” shared Murphy. At half the Packers found themselves down by three and they were motivated to keep going and leave it all on the field. Murphy had a message for his team in the locker room, “When we got in the locker room I made sure to tell everyone to keep their foot on the gas and that we can do it.” The Packers did just that. Austin scored another touchdown and added a field goal to make their lead four points.

Then came the fourth quarter. Nate Murphy was focused on Winona’s passing game “The defense was playing great all game we practically had no worries except their star receiver he was always in the back of our minds and we knew he could change the game in the matter of one play.” And that happened. On third down with six minutes left in the game, the Winona star receiver caught a 50-yard touchdown pass sprinting past all of the Packer defensive backs. That touchdown would ultimately give the Winhawks the lead and the win.
Although the Packers lost Nate Murphy liked to look on the bright side of things, he said; “It was a tough loss but we were playing a good team and we were one play away from winning that thing. It was a huge stepping stone/confidence booster going into round one of the playoffs.”

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