Bearcats withstand Huskies’ rally to earn 37-29 victory
     2014-10-09      By Terry Gaston    sports@geringcitizen.com
Photos by Sheila Weber/for the Citizen - Scottsbluff junior Eseah Ingram (No. 8) and Grand Island Northwest opponnent Ty Johnson (No. 5) go after a loose ball while GINW’s Milan Bish (No. 52) and Bearcat teammate senior Rob Cantril (No. 9 rush to assist during a Sept. 26 game at Bearcat Stadium. The Bearcats are ranked 8th in Class B across the state. 
The statistics speak for themselves: the Scottsbluff football team has a knack for starting games quickly and having big leads at halftime.

The Bearcats have also come out of the locker room for the second half without as much mojo as they had in the first half, and Scottsbluff faced the same situation Friday night at Aurora.

After leading by 20 points at halftime, the host Huskies struck twice in the third quarter, but they could only get within the final score of 37-29 in the last non-district battle for both teams.

“We ended up not keeping them focused,” said Scottsbluff coach Joe Benson, whose team has scored 155 of its 218 points in the first half but just 63 after intermission.

“They hit the big kick return, and then they hit the deep pass and we kind of went into our shell there for about 10 minutes. It was good that we found ourselves again later in the fourth quarter. But we need to do a better job of keeping our foot on the gas pedal.”

One player does not a team make, but senior quarterback and kicker Jackson Hinze was a statistical and scoring machine for the Bearcats (5-1).

Hinze ran for an 84-yard touchdown and finished with 123 rushing yards on 12 carries, and he completed 5 of 8 passes for 116 yards.
Hinze put the Bearcats up 17-7 in the first quarter thanks to a touchdown pass of 29 yards to senior Tristan Donelson on the Bearcats’ first possession and a 44-yard scoring toss to junior Traceten Halley on Scottsbluff’s next series.

Hinze also was perfect from the placekicking department, nailing all four of his extra-point kicks and booting field goals of 52, 33 and 22 yards. The 52-yarder came between Hinze’s first-quarter TD passes.

“Offensively, we kept doing what we do by running the ball well, and special teams with the three field goals, including the 52-yarder is pretty special,” Benson said.

The Bearcats amassed 313 rushing yards to Aurora’s 132, with senior Ty Benson leading the way with his 155 yards and one TD on 25 carries.

The Huskies (5-1) had 197 passing yards but had two interceptions, coming by Benson and junior Esaeah Ingram.
Junior Brad Johnston led a balanced defensive attack with six solo tackles and made seven overall, while senior Stetson Anderson had nine total tackles with five solo stops and Halley also had five solo tackles. Senior Levi Shope also had a fumble recovery for the Bearcats.

“I think we never had that many kids this year contribute to the victory,” Coach Benson said. “It was a total team effort. Defensively we played a lot better – I actually slept this weekend.”
The Bearcats and the Sidney Red Raiders have been on a collision course all season in their District B-8 opener Friday night in Sidney.

Sidney is one-half a wild-card point ahead of Scottsbluff (43.1667 to 42.6667) and is third overall in Class B while Scottsbluff is sixth. Both teams have their lone loss against McCook: the Bearcats, a 24-14 loser at home to the Bison on Sept. 12, and the Red Raiders, a 20-19 road loss on Sept. 19.

Sidney snapped Scottsbluff’s three-year grasp on the district title last year with a victory in the regular-season finale.
Any different that the district’s marquee game comes in the first week?

“No, it’s no different,” Benson said. “We’ve known that for a year. When you play it makes no difference. You just line up and play your best.”

And Benson said no extra preparations are needed for the district opener.

“You just keep practicing and playing like you do. If we play like we have the past two or three weeks, we’ll be in good shape. Just continue to make improvement, don’t be satisfied with where you’re at and just continue on with the process.”

In other action:

The Bayard Tigers were kept off the scoreboard Friday in a 38-0 home loss to Hershey in District C2-10 action. Hershey (3-3, 1-1).
381 total yards to 145. Senior rusher Gaige Marshall ran for 168 yards and three touchdowns on 20 carries, while senior quarterback Logan Weir completed seven passes for 103 yards and one touchdown.
The Tigers (2-4 overall, — district) got 25 yards on 10 carries by senior Tristan Hunter, while junior Jacob Hoff completed 12 passes for 90 yards. Senior Bryce Hargens made six receptions for 65 yards.

Hargens also led Bayard defensively, counting 22 tackles with four solo stops, while Conrad Kildow had 13 stops (two solo). Sophomore Joe Ferrero also had four solo tackles (eight total) and senior Felipe Palomo had 12 assists.

Senior Phillip Schuller and freshman Risaiah Anderson had an interception and a fumble recovery apiece for the Tigers, and junior Jacob Wamboldt also had a fumble recovery.

Bayard (2-4, 0-2 district) will play at Cambridge (1-5, 0-2 district) on Friday.

Hemingford (5-0, 2-0 district) was a 72-16 winner over Morrill in the District D1-10 matchup at Hemingford. The host Bobcats posted 46 first-quarter points and 26 in the second period to complete all its scoring by halftime.

Morrill’s two touchdowns came in the second half, one in each of the third and fourth quarters.
The Lions will be out to break their winless streak against another winless team Friday when they play host to Creek Valley (0-5, 0-2) at 7 p.m. in another District D1-10 contest.

Mitchell lost to Chadron 57-0 in District C1-8 play at Mitchell.
Tigers fell to 0-6 overall (0-2 district) and play Friday at Ogallala (2-3, 0-1 district).

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