It was Crookston's Homecoming game, moved up two days.
The Pirates hosted the Breckenridge Cowboys for Crookston Homecoming week Wednesday night, resulting in the Cowboys’ win 26-13. The game was originally meant to be played on Friday but moved forward in response to weather concerns, though head coach Scott Butt said the weather was rarely an issue during the game.
Crookston began with the ball, a punt by the Pirates intercepted, a 78 yard return by the Cowboys resulting in the first touchdown of the game within the first three minutes, their kick failing. Crookston starting with the ball again, Ethan Boll making a 10 yard run, leading up to a back and forth between the Pirates and Cowboys, including several advances by Crookston and back to back fumbles, ending with Crookston in possession again. Finally, Leyton Salentine completed a pass to Quinn Westlake in the endzone, achieving a 20-yard touchdown and a successful kick by Brooks Butt leaving the score 7-6 in the Pirates’ favor.
The second quarter was a battle, both teams only scoring within the last two minutes. After extensive back and forth, the Cowboys taking their next points in a one-yard run and a two-point conversion changing the standing score to 14-7. Less than two minutes remaining, Pirate up-man Ty Hamre took the ball, scoring Crookston’s final touchdown with a 73-yard kick-off return at the 1:26 mark. While the kick failed, they held off the Cowboys for the remainder of the half, ending the second quarter 14-13. “The biggest thing we struggled with was moving their big guys consistently,” Coach Butt said. “We would move them for a few plays then we would give up ground.”
The third quarter was a struggle, Breckenridge making a six play drive, making a first down, and five minutes later scoring a 10-yard pass, the run failing and resulting in the Cowboys increasing their lead to 20-13, maintaining the score for the rest of the quarter. “The team really played well on defense,” Butt said. “We ran to the ball and gang tackled well.”
Crookston made several attempts to recover the game, starting a nine-play drive early in the quarter before the Cowboys intercepted a pass. Breckenridge ran the ball twice, receiving no gain and forced to punt, Crookston regaining the ball with just under four minutes left. They traded the ball twice more, Breckenridge ending out the quarter with a 38-yard touchdown in the last two minutes and a failed run, ending out the game 26-13.
Butt praised Ty Hamre, saying he had a really good game and did a lot to keep them in the game. Butt also highlighted Jaren Bailey’s performance for his first varsity start.
The Crookston Pirates will be ending the regular season next week, hosting Otter Tail Central on Wednesday October 16th, starting at 7 pm.