The Wahpeton Huskies had an eventful night on Friday, Oct. 16, highlighted by Blake Schafer's school record for passing yards in a game and former Huskie Ryan Smith's jersey retirement. The Huskies fell to Devils Lake 27-26 in a game that would have sent them to the Eastern Dakota Conference playoffs. 

Wahpeton's first possession set the momentum early on the first drive. They opened the game recovering the onside kick. They got down to the 3-yard line on the first drive and got intercepted by the Firebirds. Wahpeton slowed down after that, as they were down 14-0 to start the game. Quarterback Blake Schafer kept them in the game throughout the first half. They went into the locker room down 21-14 at halftime. 

At halftime, former football player Ryan Smith retired his jersey and received an award from the city of Wahpeton for his hard work and dedication throughout his athletic career. Smith set 10 school records and went onto North Dakota State University to play football. He won three national championships in his time with the Bison. He then went on to play in the Canadian Football League. He played for the Saskatchewan Roughriders and the Winnipeg Blue Bombers for a total of three seasons. 

In the second half, it was a shootout for the most part as big touchdowns by Caden Kappes and Dez Munezero  made it a tight game. The Huskies going 1/3 on 2-point conversions would end up being costly in the end. 

A late touchdown by Devils Lake with 3:51 left gave the Huskies enough time to get one final possession. The Huskies got into the red zone with two minutes left and had to convert on a 4th and 5 to keep the game alive. Schafer and Munezero failed to convert on the 4th down play despite connecting all night long. Schafer was 29/53 and had 415 passing yards while totaling four touchdowns. Munezero totaled 13 catches for 176 yards receiving and three touchdowns. Head coach Wade Gilbertson was disappointed with the outcome, but was proud of Schafer for the way he played.

"We didn't make enough plays to score one more point," Gilbertson said. "Schafer is one of the best quarterbacks in the league, he's also one of the best quarterbacks in the eastern side of the state, and that includes AAA I think."

Despite losing the game, Schafer took non satisfaction from the passing record.

"It's definitely a game that we should've won. That's what my focus is on," Schafer said. "Next week, playoffs, that's what my focus is on. Record is cool, but this team is capable of so many things and I love this team. If you get us in the playoffs, you'll see what we can do."

Wahpeton plays their final regular season game Saturday, Oct. 24 against Central Cass High School at 2 p.m. If the Huskies win this game, they will clinch a playoff berth for the Eastern Dakota Conference playoffs.

Despite losing the game, Schafer took non satisfaction with the passing record.

"It's definitely a game that we should've won. That's what my focus is on," Schafer said. "Next week, playoffs, that's what my focus is on. Record is cool, but this team is capable of so many things and I love this team. If you get us in the playoffs, you'll see what we can do."

As Schafer mentioned, Wahpeton plays their final regular season game on Saturday, Oct. 24 against Central Cass High School at 2 p.m. If the Huskies win this game, they will clinch a playoff berth for the Eastern Dakota Conference playoffs.

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