Dukes Storied Season Ends with Hard Fought 21-14 Loss to New Berlin Eisenhower

Bay vs New Berlin

Bo Bassindale was key to the Dukes offense against New Berlin Eisenhower, rushing for 105 yards on 25 carries. Photo Credit: Cathy Lichosik | Full Photo Gallery

All good things must come to an end, but the Whitefish Bay Blue Dukes fought until the bitter end Friday night in a heartbreaking 21-14 WIAA Division 3 semifinal loss to the New Berlin Eisenhower Lions.

The Lions struck first with a first quarter TD, but the Dukes D held off Ike until QB Cade Garcia connected with WR/DB Maurice David Lee III in the second quarter with a 9-yard touchdown pass to even the score 7-7.

Despite the frigid conditions at Kettle Moraine High School, the game came alive in the second half. Lions QB Bryce Miller found favorite target WR/FS Stephen Halusan to push Ike forward 14-7. The Dukes battled New Berlin’s defense though the remainder of the third quarter, forcing a turnover that was recovered by OL/DL Mark Moraski. That staged a drive from the 46 yard-line, but the Dukes turned over on downs with an incomplete fourth down pass at the 39 yard-line.

Undeterred, Bay forced a second turnover that launched a 52-yard drive early in the fourth quarter with RB/DB Bo Bassindale pushing through the Lions’ D for a 1-yard yard TD to even the score 14-14. Bassindale was key to the Dukes offense, rushing for 105 yards on 25 carries.

New Berlin answered the Dukes game-tying touchdown with a 45-yard pass and a 4 yard TD to move the score to 21-14 with just over 9 minutes remaining in the game. The Dukes tenaciously rallied back, but, despite Cade Garcia’s best efforts to connect with his wide receivers, Bay was stopped two times inside the 10-yard line on fourth down in the final three minutes. Fans hopes were ultimately dashed after Garcia threw¬†an 8 yard pass to WR/LB Tommy Brunner, setting up a do-or-die fourth and 2 push from the 8 yard-line. With only 49 seconds left on the clock, the Dukes offense just couldn’t permeate Einsenhower’s defensive line to even the score.

The Dukes finished their truly breathtaking 2017 regular season with an 11-2 record.

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