Wildcats drop Warriors, advance to quarterfinals
Published: Thursday, October 31st, 2013
For the second consecutive year, the Custer High School football team faced the Bennett County Warriors in the first round of the state Class B playoffs. For the second consecutive year, the Wildcats came away with the win.
The Wildcats piled up 439 yards of total offense, including 233 on the ground, in a 33-8 victory last night at Wildcat Field.
“I like what I saw,” Custer head coach Russ Bailey said of his team’s performance. “After the Hot Springs game we got ourselves playing faster than we normally would play. That’s where we are right now. We’re playing at the speed we want to be at.”
Custer got on the board first late in the first quarter when running back Kenneth Myers burst through a gaping hole created by pulling guard Logan Heuer and fullback Paul Climenti for a 16-yard touchdown run. Bennett County fumbled the ball on its next possession, and Custer capitalized, driving 70 yards and getting six points from another Myers touchdown run, this time from 27 yards out.
Bennett County got back into the game early in the second quarter when quarterback Casey Reder found Gassem Belhage-Shangreaux behind the Custer defense for a 64-yard score. The Warriors’ two-point conversion attempt was good, cutting the Custer lead to 12-8.
Custer answered immediately, however, driving 80 yards on its next possession for another touchdown, this one coming on a 17-yard strike from Chase Glazier to Clayton Wahlstrom, after Glazier had avoided several Warrior defenders and lofted the ball perfectly over the out-stretched hand of a Warrior defender to Wahlstrom, who was waiting in the back of the end zone.
Joel Thomsen recovered another Bennett County fumble on the Warriors’ next possession and the Wildcats were in the end zone again just before halftime when Glazier again found Wahlstrom, this time from 18 yards out. Glazier again found Wahlstrom—who had nine catches for 95 yards in the game—for the two point conversion, and Custer took a 26-8 lead into the half.
Custer came out slinging the ball in the second half and again moved the ball down the field seemingly at will. The ’Cats scored their final touchdown in the third quarter when Wahlstrom carried up the middle from a yard out for his third touchdown of the game.
Glazier had an excellent night throwing the ball, completing 16 of 20 attempts for 206 yards.
“If we’re going to win going into these playoffs, we’re going to have to be able to throw the ball. We have to throw the ball to be able to run the ball,” Bailey said. “As soon as we started throwing the ball, we ran the ball pretty well.”
Myers finished the game with 180 yards rushing on 19 carries and Heuer led the defense with nine total tackles, including two tackles for a loss. Wahlstrom also had nine total tackles, while also forcing a fumble and having one tackle for a loss.
Last Thursday the team waited a little too long to start playing, falling behind 21-0 only 15 minutes into the game before playing a much better final 33 minutes in a 28-14 loss to the visiting Hot Springs Bison in the annual Southern Hills Showdown.
Available only in the print version of the Custer County Chronicle. To subscribe, call 605-673-2217.
Click Here To See More Stories Like This