|Bearcats clench win against Beatrice in playoff road game: Playoffs continue Friday with semi-final against Omaha-Skutt at Bearcat Stadium|
|November 13, 2014 Jerry Purvis|
Photo by Luke Nichols/Beatrice Daily Sun - Bearcat Junior Brad Johnston (No. 22) pushes through a pocket while Beatrice defenders freshman Cameron Jurgens (No. 42) and junior Landon Zarybnicky try to make contact during the Bearcats’ upset 30-28 win against the favored Orangemen. The Bearcats will challenge the Omaha Skutt Catholic Skyhawks for the semifinal on home turf this Friday at Bearcat Stadium.
It was the game to decide which team would advance to the semifinal round in the Class B football playoffs – and it was a connection from Scottsbluff quarterback Jackson Hinze to running back Ty Benson that clenched it for the Bearcats.
Scottsbluff was in Beatrice last Friday to play the Orangemen in the quarterfinal game. Their season was on the line late in the game as the Bearcats were at a 28-24 deficit and faced a fourth and 11 with 48 seconds left in the final quarter.
Everyone on the Beatrice side knew Benson would get the ball. They even double-teamed him and effectively covered the play, but Benson again had success with the play the Bearcats had run several times
before during the regular season.
Hinze threw the ball to the end zone as Benson grabbed it and tiptoed along the sideline. Benson later said he didn’t know whether he was in or out as he waited for the referee’s call. In.
The point after was unsuccessful, but the Bearcats came away with a 30-28 victory.
“We probably played our best game of the season,” said Scottsbluff Head Coach Joe Benson. “Our offense, defense and special teams really stepped up. We got contributions from just about everybody.”
Both teams showed strong offense to start the game. In the first five possessions of the opening quarter, four were for touchdowns.
Beatrice got on the board first with a 13-yard carry from running back Jessup Workman, but the point after failed.
Then Scottsbluff got to work. Benson got their first points of the night with a 4-yard run and later Hinze ran it in from the 5. Both kicks were good as Scottsbluff went up 14-6.
The Orangemen got on track again with a 5-yard touchdown run from running back Chase Nelson. Workman ran in the conversion for 2 points, tying the score at 14 at the close of the first quarter.
The only scoring in the second quarter came from Beatrice when Workman ran it in from the 6-yard line on a 16-play drive that covered 90 yards. Heath Hovendick kicked the extra point and the Orangemen were up 21-14 as the teams headed for the locker room.
After a scoreless third quarter, the Bearcats got moving again. Running back Brad Johnson took it in from the 2. With the extra point from Hinze, the score was knotted again at 21.
Scottsbluff got its first lead later in the quarter as Hinze made good on a 40-yard field goal and the Bearcats went up 24-21.
The Orangemen weren’t done. Workman, who contributed the bulk of their scoring, ran in from the 42. With the Hovendick extra point, Beatrice was up 28-24.
Then with 48 seconds left in the game, Benson made his acrobatic catch for Scottsbluff to seal the 30-28 win.
In the rushing category, Scottsbluff was led by Benson with 22 carries for 67 yards, and Hinze with 82 yards on 12 carries. All of the Beatrice offense was on the ground, so Workman was their top rusher, getting 235 yards and three touchdowns out of 27 carries.
“The Beatrice squad was huge and really well-coached,” Coach Benson said. “They have three really good running backs and their offensive line is outstanding.”
With the win, Scottsbluff extends its record to 10-1 with eight wins in a row. Coming up this Friday night, Scottsbluff is at home to face the Skyhawks of Omaha Skutt Catholic in the semifinal game at 5 p.m. in Bearcat Stadium. Temperatures are expected in the low teens with a chance of snow.
Coach Benson said Omaha Skutt has a long winning tradition with all of its sports teams. “Skutt has an outstanding defense and their quarterback is as good an athlete as you’ll see in Class B.”