Bison edge ’Cats in top-ten battle
     2015-09-17      By Steve Towery   
Photo by Steve Towery/Special to the Citizen - Scottsbluff Bearcats QB Traceton Halley faces a wall of McCook Bison defenders. The Bearcats dropped their first game in a heartbreaker, 20-14. 
MCCOOK – Bragging rights went to McCook in a battle between two of the state’s top-10s, according to the Nebraska High School Associated Press Rankings. No 5 McCook and No 6 Scottsbluff squared off with the Bison coming out on top, 20-14.
“I loved how we competed, said Scottsbluff Coach Joe Benson, despite the loss. “We came into halftime and made some adjustments.”

Brad Johnston led Scottsbluff (2-1) with 144 yards on 28 carries, and Max Mason added 138 yards, and a rushing TD, before leaving in the third quarter with a season-ending injury to his ankle.

McCook was led by Joe Schlager with 154 yards on the ground and a TD.
To open the first half, Mason broke away for a 75-yard TD, putting the Bearcts on the board first. The Bison matched it with a 75-yard scoring drive of their own, as Bret Baumbach ran the ball from 2 yards out. The Bison held the ‘’Cats forcing them to punt, then scored again on the ensuing drive, a 14-yard QB sneak by Easton Gillen, ending the first quarter with a 14-7 lead.

Midway through the second quarter, the Bison struck again with a 79-yard run by Schlager. The Bison missed the extra point, making the halftime score, 20-7.
The third quarter was a battle of defenses, as both teams failed to put any points up.
In the final two drives of the fourth quarter, the Bearcats moved the ball into McCook territory, using a mix of power running and wildcat offense, which capped a scoring drive with a 2-yard run by Ben Heggem.
The extra point was good, as the Bearcats closed the gap, 20-14. Scottsbluff failed on its next offensive try to get into the end zone, turning the ball over on downs with 56 seconds left in the game.
This week, the Bearcats host Adams-Central at home.

Bayard 14, Southeast 20

The Bayard Tigers narrowly fell to the Southeast Cyclones (Yoder, Wyo.) last Friday at home, 20-14.

The Tigers play the Southern Valley Eagles (Oxford) in a non-conference game tomorrow (Sept. 18.)

Bayard will attempt to get its first win after going 0-3 so far this season. The Eagles head into the contest with a 1-2 record, after being shutout, 36-0, by St. Patrick’s (North Platte).

Minatare 39, Wauneta-Palisade 42

The Minatare Indians let the Wauneta-Palisade Broncos squeak by in a high scoring affair Friday night in a non-conference contest in Wauneta, 42-39.

The Broncos remain undefeated with three wins. They’re next test will come against Banner County tomorrow (Sept. 18). Wauneta-Palisade plays at home, facing the Wildcats (0-1) who lost 25-0 in a non-league game to Maywood-Hayes Center (Maywood).
Meanwhile, the Indians face the McPherson County Longhorns (Tryon) in a non-conference game tomorrow (Sept. 18). Minatare will try for its first win of the season against the Longhorns after suffering two losses. The Longhorns (0-2) will be looking for their first win as well after being pummeled 54-14 in a non-league loss to Sioux County (Harrison).

Editor’s note: The Morrill Lions will take on the Crawford Rams tomorrow at home after coming off a bye week.

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