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Turnovers doom Eskomos

Esko's Kevin Gregory III prepares to throw a block for quarterback Aaron Moore during the Eskomos' 19-12 loss to Two Harbors. (Photo by Steve VanKekrix)1 / 2
Esko's Preston Lowe reaches into the end zone for a 20-yard scoring play late in the fourth quarter against Two Harbors. (Photo by Steve VanKekrix)2 / 2

For the second time in three years, Esko has consecutive losses to begin a season after a seven-turnover performance resulted in a 19-12 loss to Two Harbors.

Esko quarterback Aaron Moore, who started the game against Cloquet on Friday, Sept. 7, shortened by severe storms, was on the run throughout the first half. Moore showed quickness in escaping some of the Agate pressure, but also was responsible for multiple first-half turnovers, including an interception by Joey Marker.

Marker also put the Agates up 7-0 when he broke free for a 22-yard scoring run with six minutes remaining in the second quarter.

In the third quarter, Two Harbors looked to run away with the game after another Esko fumble led to a Cole Komarek touchdown from a yard out, making the score 13-0.

The Eskomos found life late in the third quarter when senior Mason Vinje took over at quarterback and threw a 20-yard touchdown pass to Eli Blue. The Eskomos cut the Agate lead to one point with a second 20-yard touchdown from Vinje — this time to Preston Lowe with about 6:22 to play.

Esko failed in its attempt at both 2-point conversions, the second try ending with yet another fumble recovered by Two Harbors.

Esko forced the Agates to punt on the ensuing possession, but a roughing-the-kicker penalty gave the Agates a fresh set of downs. Two Harbors took advantage of the extra opportunity when Marker scored from 19 yards out with just over a minute to play, sealing the win for the Agates.

"We knew it was going to be a tough dogfight, it always is when we play Two Harbors," Esko coach Scott Arntson said. "They're going to make it rough on us. They're not going to make it easy, and we can't give them the ball back that many times and expect to come out on top."

Jamey Malcomb

Jamey Malcomb has been a reporter for the Pine Journal since October 2018. He previously worked as a reporter for the Lake County News-Chronicle from 2015-2018. Malcomb is a native of North Carolina and holds a bachelor's degree in English and history from the George Washington University and a master's degree in education from George Mason University in Fairfax, Va. Malcomb moved to Minnesota in July 2012 and worked as a sports clerk and news assistant at the Duluth News Tribune. 

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