The student news of St. Paul Academy and Summit School

The Rubicon

The student news of St. Paul Academy and Summit School

The Rubicon

The student news of St. Paul Academy and Summit School

The Rubicon

SMB Wolfpack comes up short to South St. Paul’s comeback win

As the 2023 football season begins, the SMB Wolfpack has already faced adversity, going on a 0-2 record. The second of their two games was last Thursday, Sept. 9, at Blake’s Gordy Aamoth stadium. The Wolfpack, which consists of SPA, Minnehaha Academy, Blake and Hope Academy athletes, faced off against the South St. Paul Packers in a close and riveting game from start to finish. At the end of the night, they walked away angry and disappointed, forced to accept their 27-32 loss after a dramatic fourth-quarter comeback.

Senior Sam Murphy said, “It was a frustrating game and there’s definitely stuff to fix. We made a lot of bad decisions and they cost us the game.”

Nonetheless, SMB started the game strong, taking the offensive first as the first 12-minute quarter began. In just under three minutes, they quickly moved through the opposing defense to score the first touchdown of the game as well as an extra point. The early lead gave SMB momentum as the Packers struggled through their defense, frequently reaching third and fourth downs and covering just 10 yards every time. However, South St. Paul fought through and reached the end zone with just two minutes and 53 seconds left, leaving the two teams tied at 7-7 after the first quarter.

About a minute and 20 seconds into the second quarter, the Wolfpack again made an early breakthrough with a running play that came up just short of the endzone. Seconds later, they converted on the touchdown, earning seven more points to bring themselves into the lead. In almost identical fashion to quarter one, the opposing Packers struggled through the Wolfpack’s defense but slowly and surely made it through and scored a touchdown with three minutes left. Both teams made strong efforts with the remaining time, resulting in two interceptions. However, neither side reached the endzone, leaving the game tied again at 14-14 as players and spectators exited the field and bleachers for half-time.

As the sun set, both teams reentered the field, and families and friends sat back in the stands. The third quarter was ready to begin. At first, no big plays were made. The Packers were still struggling to find a way through the Wolfpack’s line of defense, yet the Wolfpack couldn’t manage to gain control of the ball and go on the offensive. When SMB finally was able to strike five and a half minutes into the quarter, they broke the stalemate and scored a touchdown. They weren’t ready to back down anytime soon, and with just two more minutes into the quarter, the Pack scored another touchdown, giving them a 13-point lead going into the final quarter.

It was a frustrating game and there’s definitely stuff to fix. We made a lot of bad decisions and they cost us the game.

— Sam Murphy

In the fourth and final quarter, it seemed like the Wolfpack was sure to take the victory, but the South St. Paul Packers still had much to prove and came out onto the field with a vengeance. Unlike the rest of the game, they had no trouble making it through the Wolfpack defense and scored a touchdown just a minute and a half into the quarter, making the score 20-27. SMB still had a comfortable lead, but when the Packers kicked the ball, it was picked up by one of the Packers’ own players. Having intercepted the ball, the Packers scored a touchdown again, closing the gap to just one point, 26-27.

Finally on the offensive, the Wolfpack tried to regain their lead, but to no avail. In no time, South St. Paul was back in control of the ball, and with a throw spanning 30 yards, they made their third touchdown of the quarter, claiming the lead for the first time with the score of 32-27. With the five remaining minutes of the game, the Wolfpack tried to reproduce their earlier success but just couldn’t make it past the Packers. The timer hit zero, and it was over. After making an 18-point comeback, the South St. Paul Packers won, and the SMB Wolfpack took their second loss of the season.

“I think we were overconfident going into the game and underestimated them. They were a good team, but I don’t think they’re as good as we are. We made a lot of mistakes and had a few big plays called back because of penalties,” Murphy said.

Though the Wolfpack has had a rocky start, the season is far from over. They will take on Orono High School at 5:00 p.m. on Friday at Blake’s Gordy Aamoth Stadium, hoping to turn their season around for the better.

Leave a Comment
More to Discover
About the Contributor
Thomas Chen
Thomas Chen, Sports Editor
Hi, my name is Thomas Chen (he/him). I work as the Sports Editor for RubicOnline. This is my second year on staff. At school, I’m the Upper School Council treasurer and I'm also involved in the Asian Student Alliance. I love to figure skate and watch reality TV. I can be reached at [email protected].

Comments (0)

Comments are welcomed on most stories at The Rubicon online. The Rubicon hopes this promotes thoughtful and meaningful discussion. We do not permit or publish libel or defamatory statements; comments that advertise or try to sell to the community; any copyrighted, trademarked or intellectual property of others; the use of profanity. Comments will be moderated, but not edited, and will post after they are approved by the Director of RubicOnline.  It is at the discretion of the staff to close the comments option on stories.
All The Rubicon Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.