(Editors note: This article may appear to be, at least in a small, almost undetectable way, biased, as the writer was also the losing coach in this contest)
VALLEY CITY (NewsDakota.com)–Using tactics well beyond the specified rules after being grossly outmatched in the early minutes, a team of Barnes County Law Enforcement Officers, aided by a manipulative gameday staff in the press box and crooked referees, stole the 1st Annual Fundraiser Touch Football Game from the VCSU Viking Freshman 98-77 Thursday night at Shelly Ellig Field and Lokken Stadium in Valley City.
The Lawmen were able to use players that were not, in any way, affiliated with law enforcement. Former VCSU All-Conference quarterback Jason Beilke threw for 11 touchdowns, one to the Viking mascot, not originally on the roster. Beilke narrowly missed hooking up with Barnes County Sheriff Randy McClaflin, who was watching from the sideline, but stepped into the endzone on one occasion.
After the Viking Freshman, expertly guided by head coach Ryan Cunningham, blitzed their way to a 28-7 lead, game referees simply threw fairness the way of the dinosaur, robbing the Vikings of two first-half touchdowns, allowing the lawmen four downs on a series while rules stipulated there would only be three, and allowing the lawmen to play with as many as 11 men, while the Vikings were limited to seven.
Despite this advantage, the Vikings managed to preserve at least a tie until the final minutes. Leading 77-70 with 1:30 left in the game, the Vikings threw an interception against the overloaded lawmen defense. Shortly after the interception, the gameday staff changed the score to indicate the lawmen led 91-77, spotting them 21 points, while the pick gave them the ball.
Cunningham pleaded for a timeout, but the game clock ticked down to 49 seconds before it was stopped, and no further stoppages were granted, as Cunningham was robbed of a timeout when he protested the catch by the mascot to head referee Brian Yanish earlier in the second half.
Referee Dave Carlsrud suggested Cunningham protest the game to the competition committee that oversees these matters, but no material was made available on how to protest. The lawmen celebrated with pizza and the thoughts of how to rob Cunningham of a victory next season.
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