By Jennifer Eisenbart

Sports editor

For three quarters Saturday night, the Burlington High School football team made heavily-favored Waterford fight for everything it would get on the field.

Then the wheels slowly came off.

Leading just 7-0 on a Greg Steffens touchdown run in the second quarter, the Wolverines scored three fourth-quarter touchdowns to pull away from the Demons for a 28-7 victory.

Waterford improved to 3-1 with the victory, 1-1 in the Southern Lakes Conference. Burlington dropped to 1-3 and 0-2.

Waterford coach Adam Bakken was unavailable for comment.

After being unable to finish several drives in both the second and third quarters, Waterford put the game out of reach in the fourth.

Dylan Dessart scored the first of his two touchdowns, followed shortly by the second that put the Wolverines up 21-0.

Burlington finally got on the board on the next drive when quarterback Jayden Essman connected with Ty Dennis for an 85-yard touchdown pass.

But Waterford returned the favor on the next drive, as Steffens took off on a 46-yard run that ended in the end zone.

As a team, Waterford ended up with 323 yards rushing – a clear indication as to the game plan when quarterback Zach Fisher went out last week with a partially torn MCL.

Fisher said he hopes to be back in a few weeks. In the meantime, Steffens racked up 177 yards on 16 carries, Jordan Underly another 102 yards on 13 carries, and Dessart 47 yards on nine carries.

Ryan Danbrea, who celebrated his birthday on game day, was 7-for-9 passing for 59 yards and an interception.

On the Burlington side of things, Dennis finished with 131 yards on four catches, while Burlington managed just two yards total rushing on 23 attempts.

Essman, though, completed 18 of 31 passes for 223 yards and the touchdown.

BHS coach Hans Block admitted his team got worn down in the second half.

“I was happy with the effort in the first half,” Block said. “But in the second quarter, we made some glaring mistakes.”

Those mistakes included lining up in the end zone, which cost BHS a shot at a first down, as well as a sack that took them out of four-down territory.

“Those types of things are frustrating,” Block said. “I was pleased with the effort we put forward … in the first half.

“The second half, we kind of wore down,” Block added.

And while the team’s effort was unquestioned, there were also a pair of new problems. Two-way starter Luke Syens broke his arm and is likely out several weeks, while Kasey Solofra suffered a bruise on his leg.

Block said the team hopes to have Solofra back this week.

“We build on the positives,” Block said. “We’re doing a lot of things well. We just need to eliminate the mistakes.”

The next chance for the Demons to do that will be Friday, when they host Westosha Central at 7 p.m.

Waterford, meanwhile, will travel to Elkhorn for a 7 p.m. game.

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