Local ties on Lumberjack team

9/25/08 (Thu)




Local ties on Lumberjack team

Last year, Darwin Routledge, a Westhope, North Dakota native, was chosen to restart the football program at MSU-Bottineau. The "Arntzen Alliance" was formed in the winter of 2007 to secure resources to reestablish Lumberjack Football.  The college’s last football game was in the fall of 1960. 

Routledge and his team, the Lumberjacks, were looking for their first win of the new program and on Saturday, Sepember 20th, at their home field, the Jacks pulled out their first victory in front of a Homecoming crowd and beat the Ellendale Bible College 34-42.

McLean county has three ties to the new Lumberjack football program. Frankie Lopez and Isaak Sondral, both 2008 graduates of Turtle – Lake/Mercer public school and members of the Central McLean Cougar football team and Andrew Hefta, a 2007 graduate of Underwood High School and a player on the last Underwood Comet football team are now Lumberjacks.

Head coach Darwin Routledge stated, "We were looking for kids who wanted to continue playing football at the next level, and get their education." He added, "This is a great group of kids who have hung together to start a new era of football at MSU-Bottineau."

Sondral, who plays center, was thrilled with the victory, "We finally got a win." He smiled, "I am just so glad to be able to keep playing football." Lopez, a running back also reiterated, "I wanted to keep playing football and coming to Bottineau has given me that chance." Lopez added a grin, "It was awesome to finally get a win." Hefta, who is playing strong safety thinks it is great to be back on the field, "I have met a lot of new people and I’m glad to have the chance to continue playing football ."

The Lumberjacks play in Moorhead next week against Concordia’s JV, a team that beat them earlier in the season. MSU Bottineau also plays Ellendale again as well as traveling to Minneapolis for two more regular season games.