Wildcats pluck Eagles, 34-20
The Boise City Wildcat defense stiffened early and forced the Goodwell Eagles to turn the ball over early in the first quarter.
The ‘Cat offense took the field and with the first play from scrimmage sprung Nico Collins for a touchdown romp into the endzone.
The defense continued to be tough throughout the game, never letting the Eagles to fly any closer to the ‘Cats than eight points.
With less than three minutes left in the first half, the ‘Cats were ahead by 20-6.
The Wildcat defenses biggest job was to contain QB Jesus Varga, and the explosive running of Derrick Grant.
“We knew we had to contain him [Grant] and their quarterback,” said Head Coach Nathan Halcomb.
“We finally played a game and we were very pleased with how we played. We bent, but we never broke,” Halcomb said.
After the halftime break, the Wildcats opened their lead with a TD, it was 28-6.
But early in the fourth quarter, the Eagles showed their talons. They forced the ‘Cats to turn the ball over deep in Eagle territory before scoring a TD with less than a minute gone in the fourth quarter. It was 28-12.
Then the Eagles scored again, coming within eight at 28-20 with 50 seconds left in the fourth.
But the ‘Cats came back with a roar and with five seconds on the clock, scored the last TD for the 34-20 final score.
Freshmen Quarterback Trey Sparkman completed a season high 171 yards passing.
“Trey by far played his best game Friday night,” Halcomb said. “Our passing game just kind of took off.”
Halcomb said that Sparkman's passing loosened the Eagles interior line, bringing another 147 yards on the ground.
“The first half our running game wasn't there,” Halcomb admits. “We challanged them at the half and it opened up.
“Albert [RB Albert Hernandez] had his typical game,” Halcomb said. “He had a combined yardage, passing and on the ground of 118 yards and three touchdowns.”
Halcomb had praise for his multi-talented Senior Zach Wiggins, LB/ Center/RB/kicker. “I thought Zack played his best game yet. The offensive line blocked downfield better than they had all season.
Defensivly Halcomb tapped Sophomore Brad Otttinger as a standout, with 22 tackles and four sacks.
“I think Colter Wells had his best defensive effort. He had three or four pass deflections.”
Halcomb admits that he might have hurried his team earlier this season. “We have made strides. We are three and five, and we may have tried walking before we crawled,” he said.
Though he hates to use the words young team, Halcomb points out that of a 20 man roster, more than half are freshmen and sophomores. The team graduates four seniors.
He went into the season expecting the freshmen to have an impact...he wasn't disappointed. Three from his last year's junior high team standout, Sparkman, along with Reed Gore and Todd Munsch.
He also gave a nod to transfer Austin Waldron who first suited up for homecoming and has played in three games.
Line Coach Tory Crawford said that Joe Reyes made several key stops defensivly for the Wildcats.
“I think that having Albert back at safety gave our defense their identity back,” Crawford said.
The Wildcats face a formidable opponent this Friday when they travel out of the Panhandle to play district and state number one Shattuck, and their 51 game winning streak.
“We know this is a tall task. We want to go down, have fun and give it all we've got. We hope the kids can learn from this what it takes to play at that level,” Halcomb said.
Boise City News