Football Lakewood Wilson

Football: Wilson Beats Lakewood In Season Finale

The Wilson Bruins thoroughly enjoyed their 28-7 win over Lakewood on Friday at Millikan in the last game of this Spring football season. Wilson finishes the short schedule 4-1 in Moore League play.

“I wanted all of the kids to just play loose and have fun,” Wilson coach Mark Ziegenhagen said. “As coaches sometimes we get a little tight because kids aren’t as serious but this week we just said, ‘Go crazy, go have some fun.’ We tried to get all of the seniors in to play and get them the win.”

Senior Nick Timko bookended his night with touchdowns in his last game as a Bruin. He caught a six-yard touchdown pass on the first drive of the game, and threw a 65-yard touchdown to Michael Bruner to cap the scoring for Wilson. Timko, who finished with over 100 all-purpose yards, was visibly emotional after the game while hugging his teammates and coaches.

“We were so happy to be out here, it was all love,” Timko said. “That was the difference between this year and any other year— everybody was on the same team. Everybody wanted to see each other succeed.”

Timko added that the loose and appreciative approach to the game started at pregame meal on campus.

“We were talking about how thankful we were to just have another game out here,” Timko said. “Everybody did a great job. I think the school district did a great job organizing all of these games and making sure we could still come out here and have our senior season. It really meant so much to all of us.”

“If we had 20 (Timkos) we’d have a pretty damn good team,” Ziegenhagen said. “It’s guys like that who kind of makes your motor run everyday. He’s such a great kid and had a great career here that’s for sure.”

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The Wilson defense also played free and loose while racking up 13 tackles for loss. Junior Jack Gentile led the way with four sacks. Lakewood (0-3) struggled to get anything going after stumbling out of the gate with a fumble on the opening kickoff.

Quarterback Xander McLaurin found Timko a few plays later of fourth and goal, and doubled the lead with a 45-yard screen pass touchdown to senior Michael Bruner on the first play of the second quarter. The Bruins led 14-0 at halftime.

McLaurin also scored a touchdown of his own on a wild 28-yard run to make it 21-0 early in the third quarter. Timko hit Bruner on the halfback pass late in the third. The two seniors started their careers at Wilson as quarterback and receiver on the freshman football team.

“Coach told me he wanted to see me throw a touchdown pass to (Bruner) one more time like freshman year,” Timko said. “It made me so happy. I’ve never seen (Bruner) smile like that before. He was having a blast today.”

Lakewood scored the only touchdown of the fourth quarter when junior Auggie Lyons took it in from 27-yards out.

Both teams took a moment to share pleasantries at midfield after the game.

“I had my doubts about (coming back to play) but once we started going and realized how much the kids needed this and needed to be outside and playing football again it totally changed my perspective and I’m so glad they got to play a season,” Ziegenhagen said.

VIDEO: Wilson vs. Lakewood, Football

PHOTOS: Wilson vs. Lakewood, Football

JJ Fiddler
JJ Fiddler
JJ Fiddler is an award-winning sportswriter and videographer who has been covering Southern California sports for multiple newspapers and websites since 2004. After attending Long Beach State and creating the first full sports page at the Union Weekly Newspaper, he has been exclusively covering Long Beach prep sports since 2007.
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