Male Area Athlete of the Week: Magnuson paces Patriot offense to victory over Perham
Pequot Lakes football is a family affair for the Magnuson’s.
Bode Magnuson is the senior quarterback. His father, Bill Magnuson, is the head coach. Bill’s wife sings the national anthem before home games. And Bode’s younger brother, Riggs Magnuson is a sophomore wide receiver.
It was Bode Magnuson who highlighted the family last week. He threw for 109 yards and two touchdowns while rushing for 158 yards and one touchdown in the Patriots’ 21-14 win over Perham Friday, Oct.23.
“Perham was a little beat up and it's a big rivalry game so we knew it was going to be competitive and we knew we needed to come out and actually play,” Bode Magnuson said. “It means a little more when it’s a high-quality team. It was nice to come away with a win like that.”
The win marked revenge for Pequot who fell to the Yellowjackets in the Section 7-3A semifinals last season.
“I have a ton of respect for those guys and it’s always a great game,” Bode Magnuson said. “When you play those better, high-caliber teams it feels good to beat them. We aren’t done with them yet. We probably will see them again in the playoffs and that’s the one that matters to me the most.”
His knowledge of the game is what impressed his father and coach Bill Magnuson.
“He can change the play on the line and he’s constantly overseeing and looking at defenses and getting us out of bad plays,” Bill Magnuson said. “He’s done a really good job of that because he’s a student of the game.”
Bode Magnuson returned to playing under center this year after playing wide receiver the past two seasons for Pequot. That transition has been one of the challenges of the season.
“That first game was a little rocky. I was very nervous,” Bode Magnuson said. “I played wide receiver my junior and sophomore year, but up until then, I was QB. Being around the game a long time and playing varsity for four years now really just helped me transition into that move.”
Scrambling is a weapon Bode Magnuson is able to use under center.
“I use the legs to my ability to get out of the pocket,” he said. “I feel I am most dangerous when I am out of the pocket. I’m always looking to pass first when I get outside and my receivers do a good job of coming back to the ball.”
One of those receivers is Alex Morgan who Bode Magnuson found in the end zone twice against Perham. Morgan and Magnuson have built a relationship that stretches multiple sports.
“Alex is a guy who has been around varsity sports for a couple of years now as well,” Bode Magnuson said. “We have not only built that bond in past football years, but also during basketball years as well. He always has a knack of knowing where I want him to be and I know if he is one-on-one he is going to win because of the type of athlete he is.”
“I think that’s paid off now,” Bill Magnuson said. “There’s a lot of trust from Bode to Alex and we know Alex is going to go up and get the ball for him.”
What’s impressed Bill Magnuson is how calm Bode has been throughout the whole COVID-19 fiasco.
“He’s been as cool as a cucumber,” Bill Magnuson said. “I will say that about all our seniors. We could’ve pouted. We could’ve cried. And not once have I seen them do that.”
Throughout the season, Bode Magnuson has been trying to spin everything as a positive.
“I am shocked at how resilient he has been along with all of our football players,” Bill Magnuson said. “They’re handling it better than the adults — even the head coach.”
Above all, Bode Magnuson appreciates the family atmosphere football has brought him.
“My dad has been teaching my brother and I since we were young and we have our youngest brother Tate in youth football,” Bode Magnuson said. “It’s been passed on through the family for years and there is so much knowledge being passed down. I remember watching a film with my dad when I was a kid and not really getting it, but just loving being around it.”
A special family moment happened in the Patriots win over Park Rapids earlier this season. In the third quarter of Pequot’s 28-6 win, Bode Magnuson threw a touchdown pass to his younger brother Riggs. A 4-yard score which was the last touchdown of the game.
“That’s a dream come true when you have two sons on the field at once and one throws a touchdown to the other,” Bill Magnuson said. “We have been a football family from day one. My wife sings the national anthem and my youngest boy is the ball boy. We’re in this thing together.”
Other notable performances:
Football: Payton Rondestvedt, Wadena-Deer Creek, threw for 289 yards and three touchdowns and rushed for a touchdown.
Connor Tulenchik, Pine River-Backus, rushed for 142 yards on six carries and three touchdowns.
Michael Leidenfrost, Pierz, rushed for 113 yards on 18 carries and two touchdowns and caught four passes for 65 yards.
Sivert Klefsaas, Staples-Motley, rushed for 181 yards on 19 carries and three touchdowns.
Alex Morgan, Pequot Lakes, caught two touchdown passes.
School: Pequot Lakes
Highlights: Rushed for 158 yards on 19 carries and threw for 109 yards on 10-for-25 passing with three total touchdowns in a win over Perham.