Wildcats finally taste victory with shutout win
     2011-10-27      By Terry Gaston   
Photo by Sheila Weber Banner County’s Ben Hostetler moves the ball against Hay Springs Oct. 7. 
No one would have blamed the Banner County football team had the Wildcats gone crazy following their 46-0 triumph Friday night over Creek Valley at Chappell.

After all, the Banner County seniors had not tasted victory since they were freshmen, and then 20 losses followed until the Wildcats finally got that elusive win.

However, Banner County knew all too well how its counterparts felt. Both teams entered the District D2-10 game with 0-7 overall records and 0-4 in district play.

The Wildcats felt the Storm's pain -- literally. And Banner County coaches and players walked to the Creek Valley sidelines to shake an injured player's hand after the game. The player had suffered a sprained ankle after the Storm had lost its top player, senior quarterback and linebacker, Jacob Savely, to a season-ending injury three weeks earlier.

"It was kind of weird, more like a burden had been lifted off our shoulders," said second-year Wildcats coach Kenny Stauffer, who got his first win after 15 losses at Banner County.

"I think we were more relieved as excited, where they had finally accomplished something. And it was more humbling to them because Creek Valley was going through the very same thing.

"There's more to football than just winning. You try to make sure there's more with respect and all of life's lessons that we try to preach."

Activities Director Kari Gifford expressed her pride in her Wildcat student-athletes as well.

"Our students have always demonstrated good sportsmanship and I am very proud of how they have handled themselves," Gifford said. "It was nice to finally get a win. Our seniors were freshmen when we had our last win, so it's been awhile."

So the Banner County seniors made their gridiron finale worth the while, outgaining the Storm 264 yards to 90 and Jordan Knaub making two interceptions while scoring three touchdowns.

Knaub connected with sophomore Ben Hostetler for 52 yards on the Wildcats' first of three first-quarter touchdowns, with senior Brady Lind scoring on a 14-yard run and Hostetler following with an 11-yard TD rush.

Hostetler then threw an 18-yard TD pass to Knaub, junior Collin Havengar blocked a punt for a safety and Knaub scored on an 18-yard dive play to give Banner County a 38-0 halftime lead.

Hostetler found Knaub for a 32-yard touchdown pass play to end the scoring in the fourth quarter. Hostetler finished with 88 passing yards and Knaub had 52 passing yards, 52 receiving yards and 46 rushing yards. Lind also had 46 yards on the ground.

"The boys never quit and fought until the end," Stauffer said. "While the team was playing for the same purpose and same reason, it finally got us over the bump. We're hoping it carries over now."

Gordon-Rushville 42, Mitchell 15

After starting the season 2-1, the Mitchell Tigers found life in District C1-10 tough to handle, and their playoff hopes were dashed Friday night with a 42-15 road loss to Gordon-Rushville.

“We came out flat the first half and it was probably the worst half of football we’ve played in a month,” said Mitchell coach Chris Bailey, whose team (3-5 overall, 0-4 district) fell behind 29-0 at halftime against the Mustangs.

“We played better in the second half, took the returning kick off back and outscored G-R 15-13 in the second half. I was proud of how we battled back in the second half and didn’t quit.”

Gordon-Rushville (4-4 overall, 2-2 district) outgained Mitchell 495 yards to 157 on the night, with Tiger senior Alberto Alvizar gaining 129 of his team’s yards on 18 carries with one touchdown. Junior Brendan Swanson connected with sophomore Adam Schlotthauer on a 14-yard pass for Mitchell’s other score.

Share this story on Facebook
LOGIN or REGISTER for exclusive access to premium content

Good Afternoon friend!
Recently Read Sports
897Wildcats finally taste victory with shutout win
653Hitting the target
1241Cougar women get 19th win
916Lexington boys oust Scottsbluff after Bearcats down Bulldogs
1001Andy Pepler 7th annual Memorial Tournament a big success at SBCC
1455Large Scottsbluff team returns strong experience
1226STATE CHAMPIONS: Bearcats spell state title run T-E-A-M
1242Gering track building on strong foundation
1287Bearcats edge Gering teams
1350Mitchell boys and girls place second in home meet
1438Race across Nebr. invites ultra-runners
1277Monument Marathon hits the road in September
1243Banner County football team enters new division
1164Gering breaks two records at Chadron: Track season gets underway at Chadron Indoor Meet
843Gering Platte Valley Companies get second on Crete in tournament
1244Gering relays, Scottsbluff's Maag, Worden tops at Best in the West Classic
1237Bearcats place second to McCook for second time in two weeks
1258Bearcats claim fifth golf title
854A district grand slam for Scottsbluff Bearcats: Bearcats lead top-seeded Bulldogs from start to finish, win 4th straight B-6 title
865Bearcat boys drill McCook, Lexington in Shootout
Most Read Sports 2012
4057Mitchell track off to a strong start
3944Morrill baseball back in business
3351Rivals make good friends, better training partners
3346Gering wrestling builds on experience
3236Bulldogs basketball ready to run Class B gauntlet
3173Mendoza spirit lives on in softball tournament
2985All Points West: Time to get tough Huskers
2963Gering resident lives his dream
2848All Points West: We’ll miss 2016 seniors
2784Raising the bar high
2781Basketball girls hungry for more wins
2758Kizzire and Kautz take first place
2746Gering breaks two records at Chadron: Track season gets underway at Chadron Indoor Meet
2700Cougars clench 18th straight Region IX title
2644Sterkel Colorado bound, inks with Rangers
2636Beam to golf at Midland
2539Doing the heavy lifting
2464Gering girls’ soccer team creating team first attitude
2289Scottsbluff hopes to repeat as state champs
2257Morrill Lions move to eight-man offers opportunity
Most Read Sports 2011
4057Mitchell track off to a strong start
3944Morrill baseball back in business
3351Rivals make good friends, better training partners
3346Gering wrestling builds on experience
3236Bulldogs basketball ready to run Class B gauntlet
3173Mendoza spirit lives on in softball tournament
2985All Points West: Time to get tough Huskers
2963Gering resident lives his dream
2848All Points West: We’ll miss 2016 seniors
2784Raising the bar high
2781Basketball girls hungry for more wins
2758Kizzire and Kautz take first place
2746Gering breaks two records at Chadron: Track season gets underway at Chadron Indoor Meet
2700Cougars clench 18th straight Region IX title
2644Sterkel Colorado bound, inks with Rangers
2636Beam to golf at Midland
2539Doing the heavy lifting
2464Gering girls’ soccer team creating team first attitude
2289Scottsbluff hopes to repeat as state champs
2257Morrill Lions move to eight-man offers opportunity
Platte Valley Companies
Fresh Foods
American Legacy
Spectrum Photo
Kendell Henderson
= = = Platte Valley Companies' = = =
Sports Page

Check out the
Gering Bulldogs on