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Lake City advances to state again

It was business as usual for the Lake City High football team and a frustrating night at the office for Post Falls.

The Timberwolves tacked on another year to its streak of 5A State playoff appearances, making it 16 years in a row with a 19-7 victory over visiting Post Falls on Friday night. The Trojans (2-7) haven’t qualified for the state playoffs since joining 5A in 2006.

Lake City (5-3-1) earned a rematch with Eagle, which knocked off the Timberwolves 35-28 in the season opener.

“I’m just proud of these guys,” LC coach Van Troxel said. “It was important to them.”

Lake City built a 19-0 halftime lead. The Trojans narrowed the gap midway through the fourth quarter on Joey Pfennigs’ 50-yard touchdown run. They had a couple of chances to make it really interesting but couldn’t capitalize. That would be a game-long theme. Eight Post Falls’ possessions ended in LC territory.

“Very frustrating,” said Trojans coach Jeff Hinz, whose offense had similar frustrations in a 45-24 loss to Lake City last month. “These kids kept working hard for all nine weeks. We had our ups and downs. We just couldn’t finish the ball games. We were close.”

Lake City rolled up 175 yards rushing in the first half. Long runs – and one timely connection in the passing game – fueled the Timberwolves’ three scoring drives.

Sophomore Jerry Louie-McGee hauled in a 29-yard pass from quarterback Bruce Shipley, setting up Brandon Johnson’s 23-yard touchdown run.

Late in the first quarter, Louie-McGee raced around left end on fourth-and-3, cut back to the middle of the field and finished off a 48-yard touchdown run, boosting LC’s lead to 13-0.

Gavan Rosteck, who starts at defensive tackle but occasionally gets carries as a fullback, had runs of 37 and 31 to set up his 1-yard scoring plunge as the T-Wolves took a 19-0 lead.

Meanwhile, Post Falls had 167 total yards in the first half, but came up empty on the scoreboard. The Trojans fumbled inside the LC 20-yard line and the Timberwolves’ Erik Redal recovered. On their next series, the Trojans tried a fake punt from LC’s 40 but Jacob Kazmierski read the play and dropped Seth McLeod for a 5-yard loss.

Post Falls later turned it over on downs at LC’s 12 and 2 in the second quarter.

“The last couple weeks we’ve been playing cleaner,” Hinz said. “We didn’t tonight.”

Post Falls applied more pressure in the second half, but the Timberwolves picked off two passes and forced a fumble. LC needed every big defensive play after having a punt blocked and fumbling the ball away in the final 3 minutes.

Louie-McGee (73 yards), Johnson (72) and Rosteck (71) paced LC’s running game. Rosteck was ejected for an unsportsmanlike penalty late in the second quarter. PF’s McLeod ran for 98 yards on 27 attempts.