Bearcats Dominate Bunnies

Miko Maessner runs free against the Bunnies – Photo By Darin Sazzman

After a 3-1 start, the Kearney High Bearcats faced off against the 0-4 Omaha Benson Bunnies on Sept. 21, 2018. After a 46-yard run by junior running back Miko Maessner on the first play of the game, the Bearcats drive stalled as they sent out senior kicker Gabe Heins for a 30-yard field goal, which he missed wide right.

This miss did not phase the Kearney High defense however, as Omaha Benson quarterback Desmond Prusia was sacked on 3rd down by senior Bearcat defensive lineman Grant Kowalski. After the punt, the Kearney offense was able to score on the first play of their drive as senior quarterback Brayden Miller was able to tiptoe down the sideline and into the endzone for the first score of the ballgame.

After another three and out by the Kearney High defense, the offense was able to move the ball downfield and end the drive with a 34-yard Miller pass to senior wide receiver Corbin Foster. This was his first touchdown of the year. Following the kickoff, Benson once again went three and out and gave the Bearcats great field position following the punt on the Benson 31-yard line. Kearney was able to convert this field position into a 44-yard field goal by Heins to put the score at 12-0 Bearcats.

After a forced fumble by Foster, that was recovered by junior defensive lineman Jaxon Worley, the Bearcat offense was able to convert it into a touchdown three plays later as Miller found senior wide receiver Cale Masters for the Bearcats second passing touchdown of the game. After a missed extra point by Heins, the Bearcats led 23-0 at the end of the first quarter.

On the next Bearcat possession, senior running back Sam Engberg was able to run in an 11-yard touchdown to bring the score to 30-0. Following a short offensive drive by Omaha Benson, the Bearcats were able to have a long drive that ended in a one-yard touchdown run by senior fullback Jeremiah Hagemann. After a high snap by Omaha Benson, Foster was able to recover the ball to give the Bearcats great field position at the Benson 17-yard line. On the next drive, junior quarterback Colin Murray bobbled a snap and improvised his way to the endzone for a 12-yard touchdown run.

The Bearcats were set up on the 25-yard line following a third fumble by the Bunnies, which was forced by senior defensive lineman Charlie Polen and recovered by junior linebacker Gabe Gilsdorf. The following drive stalled as the Bearcats were stopped on 4th down with many of their junior varsity players in the game. Later on in the second quarter, Gilsdorf was able to contribute offensively, scoring on a 13-yard touchdown run to bring the score to a dominant 50-0 Bearcat lead at the half.

After a scoreless and uneventful third quarter, the Bearcats were able to make some plays in the fourth. About midway through the quarter, Prusia was intercepted by sophomore safety Preston Pearson. The following play, junior running back Bryce Kovarik found the perfect hole on his way to a 65-yard touchdown. The Bunnies turned the ball over once again on their next drive as running back Malicah Charles fumbled right into sophomore defensive end Will Luthans chest. Kearney was able to turn that turnover into a 12-yard Pearson run for the final score of the game. The Bearcats won by a final of 64-0.

Miller went 3 of 10 for 62 yards and 2 touchdowns and Murray went 2 of 8 for 32 yards. Miller also led the rushing totals with two carries for 75 yards and Kovarik was closely behind with five carries for 69 yards. Foster led the receiving totals with one catch for 34 yards and a touchdown, followed by junior wide receiver Jackson Miller, who had one catch for 25 yards. The defensive effort was led by Hagemann with six tackles and senior linebacker Parker Brush with five tackles. The Bearcats would then host Millard West at home on Sept. 28, 2018.