Highland News Leader

Highland tunes up for postseason with easy win against Charleston

Highland freshman quarterback Brent Wuebbles and junior running back Logan Chandler gave the Charleston defense big headaches Friday night in Charleston.

Wuebbels threw for a pair of touchdowns and Chandler ran for two scores and the Bulldogs defense kept the Trojans in check all night as Highland rolled to a 42-14 road win in the 2019 regular-season finale.

Highland (6-3), which clinched a playoff spot and a share of the Mississippi Valley Conference championship Oct. 18, opens play in the Class 3A playoffs this weekend.

“The nice thing about tonight is we were able to breathe a little bit and get a couple of younger guys in who really deserve to get in there (and play) and all in all I though tit was an overall team win,” Highland coach Jimmy Warnecke said.

The Bulldogs scored twice in the first quarter, jumping out to a 13-7 lead.

In the second quarter, Highland added two more touchdowns for a commanding 27-7 lead at the end of the first half.

“We pounded the ball (in the run game) pretty good early on and the first drive we pretty much went down the field,” Warnecke said. “Then we had some big plays in the passing game and I thought early on we made some really big key plays, so that helped.”

Wuebbels, freshman receiver Cade Altadonna, and senior wideout Connor Sands were rough on the Trojans secondary, connecting for a pair of touchdowns passes. Wuebbles passed for 160 yards and ran for another 123 yards. Altadonna had three catches for 80 yards, and Sands had 37 yards receiving.

Driving the inside run game, Chandler ran for 72 yards on 13 carries and scored a pair of touchdowns.

On a night where the offense made plenty of noise, the Bulldogs defense also shined. Highland picked off three Charleston passes as Dylan Litzenburg, Jack Korte, and Tucker Engelmann all registered interceptions.

Litzenburg led the defense with seven tackles.

“I thought our defense played awesome tonight,” Warnecke said. “That’s the group that we really need to come together and they kind of had to figure it out the last couple of weeks and I feel like our defense really played collectively well tonight.”

HHS scored two more touchdowns in the second half and allowed just a third-quarter score in the second half.

This weekend presents a first-round game in the Class 5A playoffs for the 10th seeded Bulldogs, who will visit No. 7 seed Cahokia. Warnecke believes the team has at least a couple of games left in them.

“We’ve won five in a row now, so we’re starting to get confident and starting to get a little bit of swagger that we didn’t have at the beginning of the year. We’re definitely trending in the right direction right now,” Warnecke said.

Kickoff is set for 2 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 2.