Bobcats Move To 3-0 With Win Over Gremlins (09/09/19)

(Above photo by John Frazier: Bobcat defense set to take on Karns City offense)

The Clarion Area Bobcats hosted the Karns City Gremlins at Memorial Stadium on Friday (September 6th), in a match-up of undefeated District Nine League Large School Division unbeaten teams, with the Cats coming out on top 42-14.

The game was a close, hard hitting affair in the first half, with neither team getting much of an advantage.

Bobcats entering stadium through US Army “helmet”

Karns City struck first with Luke Garing taking the ball in from two yards out, at 4:28 of the first quarter. Owen Collwell added the PAT and the Gremlins led 7-0.

The Cats answered at 11:01 of the second . With Clarion at the Karns City 40, quarterback Cal German dropped back and laid the ball in perfectly to Ethan Burford, who was just behind the Gremlin defender, down the left side, at about the five. Burford never broke stride as he took the ball in for the touchdown. Beau Verdill added the extra point to tie the score at 7-all.

The score remained the same until Kyle Bottaro followed some great blocking by the line through the middle for a one yard touchdown with just 7.9 seconds left in the half. With Verdill’s kick, the Cats led 14-7.

But Karn City’s Kaden Scherer ensuing kickoff at his own 17, ran through a host of defenders, cut to the right and raced down the right side to the endzone for an eighty-three yard touchdown, with just one second left on the clock. Colwell kicked the extra point and the score was tied at 14-all.

Clarion Area Superintendant, Joseph Carrico, Clarion-Limestone Principal Mel Aaron and North Clarion Superintendant Steve Young are presented footballs by US Army representatives Staff Sergeant Adam Oke n and Captain Jacob Randazzo and an unidentified military member

It was all Bobcats in the second half, as they scored twenty-eight unanswered points, securing the victory.

The first score of the second half was set up when German hit Burford from his own 15 to the Clarion 45. Burford made it to the Karns City 26 before he was brought down. Five plays later, Austin Newcomb used some nifty footwork dancing in from the 3 with 8:33 left in the third, the first of four touchdowns on the night for Newcomb. With Verdill’s kick, Clarion led 21-14.

Number two came on a seventy-six yard run down the right sideline, with Newcomb breaking a tackle at the Clarion 40 and outrunning everyone to the endzone. Verdill, who was successful on all six PAT tries, was on target again and at 2:37 of the quarter, Clarion led 28-14.

Clarion Little League Baseball and Softball All-Stars displaying Championship Banners

The Cats would score once more before the before the end of the quarter, with Newcomb finding a seam on the left side and ran in for a two-yard score, with fifty-three seconds left. Verdill was good again and the lead stretched to 35-14.

Newcomb’s final touchdown came on a fifty-three yard run, where cut to the right sideline just after crossing the line of scrimmage, and at the ten he cut left between two defenders ran into the endzone. Verdill’s sixth PAT set the 42-14 final.

Newcomb finished the night with 17 carries for 210 yards and the four touchdowns and 2 catches for fifteen yards. German was 8-for-16 passing for 191 yards and the touchdown. Burford had 4 receptions for 130 yards and the touchdown. Cutter Boggess had 3 carries for 22 yards and a catch for 35 yards.

The Cats out-gained the Gremlins, 435-206, including 244 yards on the ground.

The evening’s activities featured Members of the US Army being on hand for Scholastic Sports Marketing’s as part of their “National Friday Night Lights Tour.” Military members were involved with the coin toss and presented commemorative balls to each of the three schools involved in the Bobcats football co-op, Clarion, North Clarion and Clarion-Limestone.

The Bobcats ran onto the field through a large inflatable US Army football helmet. And military members shot tee shirts into the crowd.

Thank you to these fine men and women for taking time for this fine event and for their service.

Another highlight was the Clarion Little League being recognized during the pre-game. A proclamation from Clarion Mayor William Miller, recognizing Friday, September 6th as Clarion Little League All-Star Day, was read by Mr. Stahlman, over the Public Address as the various Championship All-Star Baseball and Softball Teams displayed their Championship Banners on the field.

Thank you, Mayor Miller and congratulations Clarion Little League.

(Armed Forces, Crowd, Little League, longtime rivalry, second home game/first home game at Stadium. slow first half, halftime speech, second half, defense, Mike Taylor, players stepping up for injured teammates)


Coach Larry Wiser

I thought our kids, the way the first half ended and the way the second half started, it is one of those things you just want to circle and say, “Hey, this team really grew tonight.

It was a tough game in the first half. Give Karns City credit. They did a good job trying to run the ball on us. We were trying to do some things a little bit differently, some different people in there.

But the way we came out in the second half was good. Someone asked, “What happened? Was it the speech?” Well I give Coach Dave Eggleton the credit. Dave went in there first, before I did; he gave a big kind of fiery speech. Mine was more of “OK, we need to adjust here and there defensively.

I thought the kids responded well. From that standpoint, I think, this was a good stepping stone for us to keep moving and so forth.

Ethan Remmick came in and did a great job on that big tight end. The kid is 6′-4″ and 245. Ethan might go 190 pounds. We felt that was going to be one of our keys and I think Ethan fulfilled everything we needed him to do. I didn’t anticipate playing him there the whole game, but he did such a great job. He’s a kid that really deserves a pat on the back for this week’s performance.

Offensively, we were bang – bang and we’re in.

Coach Wiser with Ethan Burford

Wide Receiver/Defensive Back Ethan Burford

I think this game was honestly a test for us. This week we had to prove the team that we were. I think we did a pretty good job of that.

We started out a little bit slow, but we came out at halftime. We were hungry and we just kept rolling. We got some momentum and we scored a bunch.

(When asked about anyone he’d like to single out for a good job) Honestly, it is an endless group of people. We have a few key players out right now and the younger guys are stepping up and just doing an amazing job.

Austin Newcomb is just doing what he does best. Cal was hooking me up with passes all night. Cutter (Boggess) had a heck of a night tonight too.

Hunter Craddock

Tight End/Defensive End Hunter Craddock

We came out slow and then we went at halftime and got all hyped up. Newcomb had some great runs. Cal had some great throws.

We were just coming out hard. Our defense was putting on the pressure from the outside.

We were making big plays. And we came out with the W.

The Bobcats will travel to Brookville on Friday (September 13th), in another match-up of two undefeated Large School Division teams.

(Thanks to John Frazier for his photo. GREAT GAME CATS!!!! BEAT THE RAIDERS!!!!)