By Mark Pawlak
Central Iowa Press
CEDAR FALLS - North Tama didn't forget the past, but also didn't let it impact the present.
Above right: Tyler Cizek gets some help with a block from a team mate to continue his run of the ball in the Dome on Friday night’s game against Mason City Newman.
Photo by Mark Pawlak
The 2009 Redhawk football team was a state title contender that saw its drive for the crown derailed in the state semifinals.
Mason City Newman Catholic proved to be the roadblock that ended North Tama's perfect season as the Redhawks fell in a 28-26 heartbreaker.
The Redhawks again entered the UNI-Dome Friday with an unblemished record.
New year, new team, new result.
Third-ranked North Tama downed No. 2 Newman Catholic 35-20 in a late-night Friday outing that spilled over into Saturday morning in a Class A state football playoff quarterfinal game at the UNI-Dome.
"This is such a different team than last year's team," said Redhawks head coach Brent Thoren. "There's a lot of guys that remember it and played against (Newman) last year.
"It was something they talked about, we want to get another shot at them, but I'll tell you what, that's a heck of a football team we battled."
The next step for 2010 North Tama football (12-0) is a semifinal pairing with No. 4 WACO (12-0) Friday at 10:30 a.m. back in the UNI-Dome.
North Tama used a deadly accurate short passing attack to go with great blocking (downfield by its wide receivers as well as the offensive line) to score four touchdowns in four first-half drives Friday.
Redhawk senior quarterback Brendon Boerm finished 24-for-35 for 248 yards and three touchdowns in the final stats. He broke a tie for the school record for touchdown passes in a single season and now has 25 scoring strikes. Lucas Hefty had 10 receptions with a pair of touchdowns, while Tyler Cizek caught eight passes. Boerm also rushed 25 times for 161 yards and two touchdowns.
The Knights nearly matched North Tama in total offense, but the Redhawk defense was able to get key stops and forced three turnovers.
Cade Isenhower led the way as the senior linebacker was involved in 17 tackles (seven solo-10 assists). Tyler Zook had 11 tackles, while Brandon Svoboba, Nick Whannel and Nathan Jones each added 10.
"You have to come in focused," Thoren said. "If you don't come in focused and you're just all about trying to get revenge on them, they are just going to make plays on you."
Speaking of remembering how your season ended a year ago, the Redhawks' semifinal opponent WACO knows the feeling.
North Tama defeated the Warriors in the 2009 state quarterfinals at the UNI-Dome.