Wildcat Football falls to Bracken County

The Route 22 rivalry rematch didn’t turn out how Pendleton County Wildcat football hoped. Coming off a 9-3 season, Bracken County was ready for the upstart Wildcats to avenge last season’s loss. Last Friday’s game ended in a 12-8 victory for the Polar Bears. The loss dropped the Wildcats to 1-2 on the season.

Against Nicholas County, the Wildcats put more trust in junior quarterback Matt Campbell to throw the ball. The coaching staff increased his throwing volume from the prior week up to 19 attempts. Campbell unfortunately didn’t have as good a week. Against the Polar Bears, Campbell threw for 52 yards on five completions in 12 attempts. For the first time his season, Campbell threw an interception. 

On a positive note, Campbell threw a touchdown. That’s his third passing touchdown of the season. Campbell has now completed a passing touchdown in three straight contests. His touchdown to senior wide receiver Koby Leazur kept the Wildcats in the game.

On the ground, the Wildcats didn’t see much success. Campbell rushed the ball 12 times for 56 yards. Senior tailback Mason Fuller increased his workload from last week. He logged 29 yards on seven carries. The Wildcats weren’t able to score the ball on the ground as the Polar Bear defense played well forcing takeaways.

The Wildcats had a great game defensively. Although the game ended in a loss, the Wildcat defense had multiple red-zone stands to keep the Polar Bears from scoring. Senior Lyle Secrist led the way with seven total tackles. Junior Jacob Bex continued his strong play as of late finishing with six tackles and one for a loss. Junior Colton Beane continued his strong season with the Wildcats first interception of the season. Junior Brian Ferrell was credited with the Wildcats only sack of the game.

Turnovers played a large part in this game. The Polar Bears won the turnover battle four to one. Quarterback Trey Brausch led the offense throwing for 177 yards and one touchdown completing 11 for 21 attempts. Star running back Tad Fisher had a mundane game on the ground gaining a measly 24 yards on 18 carries. The Wildcats were well-prepared for his rushing ability. Although he didn’t gain many yards, his rushing touchdown proved to be crucial. Fisher was able to hurt the Wildcats in other ways. Through the air catching six passes for 105 yards.

This loss is tough to swallow for any Wildcat fans as well as the coaching staff. Execution is key in football. When it comes down to game time, a team must execute in order to secure the win. The coaching staff will sit down with one another this week and break down the film in order to get back on track against Dayton. Early rivalry losses sting. However, a week three bout against a 1A school is not always indicative of how the rest of the season will go. There is still plenty of football left to be played.