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Raiders to play state football semifinal in Schofield Saturday

HUDSON - The Hudson Raider football team will play in the WIAA state semifinals for the first time in school history after defeating Appleton North, 40-21, in a battled of undefeated teams Saturday, Nov. 3, in a state quarterfinal game in Stevens Point.

Hudson, now 11-0, will face 11-0 Hartland Arrowhead this Saturday, Nov. 10, at 4 p.m. at D.C. Everest High School in Schofield with a berth in the state championship game on the line.

Hudson turned the ball over four times in the second half of its state quarterfinal game but the Raider defense came up big each time, preventing Appleton North from turning any of the turnovers into points.

The Raiders never trailed after Joe Kelly capped the opening drive of the game with a two-yard touchdown run. After a three-and-out by the Lightning, Dan Loughney scored from four yards out for a 13-0 Raider lead.

Appleton North scored on a 45-yard touchdown pass on the first play of the second quarter, but Hudson answered with a 79-yard drive, capped by a nine-yard touchdown pass from Mike Hommes to Alex Herink.

On North's first play from scrimmage after Herink's TD, Raider defensive lineman Jared Johnson picked off a pass and returned it 22-yards for a touchdown to extend Hudson's lead to 26-7.

The Raiders led 26-14 at halftime and committed three turnovers in the third quarter but still managed to widen its lead to 33-14 on a one-yard touchdown run by Loughney.

Appleton North made it a 33-21 game with 8:32 remaining, but Hudson recovered the Lightning's onside kick attempt and Kelly delivered the final blow with a 35-yard touchdown run with six minutes left.

Appleton North made one last drive, but Stuart Burns intercepted a pass in the end zone with four minutes remaining to seal the victory.