ALBION – One week after scoring three touchdowns in a span of three offensive snaps, Boone Central/Newman Grove took a step back on Friday.
But only a teeny, tiny one.
The Class C-1 No. 1-rated Cardinals scored three TDs in a span of four offensive snaps to close out the first half en route to a 49-18 rout of Grand Island Central Catholic.
"We were hoping to score on time before half, and we ended up scoring three," BC/NG coach Arnie Johnson said. "But we’ve done that the last couple of years. When they let down a little bit or are just trying to run out the clock, we’re trying to get in there and score.
"And we have a lot, lot of playmakers. We have lots of receivers and we have a quarterback (Wyatt Mazour) who understands our offense enough that two out of three of those (touchdowns) were audibles. I called a play, and he changed the play, and his play worked better than my play."
The Crusaders appeared to have some momentum after recovering a fumbled punt return and turning it into a 42-yard Bryce Sealock field goal to close within 14-3 with 5:11 left in the first half.
But the Cardinals (4-0) dominated from there. Mazour found Kyle Kramer open on a fourth-and-9 play from the GICC 40-yard line for a 12 yard game, then hit Kramer again on the next play for a 28-yard score.
"We were moving the ball pretty well all throughout the game, so we knew we could get down the field fast," said Mazour, who was 10-for-15 for 179 yards in his one half of action. "I didn’t expect it to be that fast scoring those three touchdowns.
"We knew we had to stop them after they got those points on the board. We came out even more aggressive and quicker. It was just a fun time with our guys."
After a short punt into the wind gave Boone Central/Newman Grove the ball inside Crusader territory, Joseph Brugger ran it in from 23 yards out.
And after a GICC fumble, Mazour scrambled to near the right sideline, circled back left and eventually found Zac Glidden wide open for a 30-yard score with 10 seconds left.
Suddenly the hosts led 35-3.
"It was a rollout pass, and I didn’t want to force anything because they covered it pretty well," Mazour said. "I looked on the backside, and they were overrunning it. I just cut back and thankfully my wide receiver was wide open."
The end of the half was too much for the Crusaders (2-2) to overcome.
"They’re obviously a good team," GICC coach Charlie Shoemaker said. "Probably three of those scores were self-inflicted. We gave them short fields, and we can’t do that.
"When we executed and did things right, we moved the ball. Then we got away from that a few times, and they’re going to make you pay for that."
To show how tough a night it was for Central Catholic, the Crusaders converted on two fake punts in their first drive of the second half. But it was Boone Central/Newman Grove who scored on the possession when Keaton Henry returned an interception 46 yards.
"I hope they understand we’ve got to be disciplined for four quarters and we’ve got to come to work every day and get better," Shoemaker said. "If we play like that in our district, we’re going to be in trouble."
But everything didn’t go smoothly for Boone Central/Newman Grove. Running back Matthew Brugger clutched his left knee after being tackled on his only carry of the game. After being helped off the field, he was eventually taken from the sideline on a stretcher.
"We don’t want to lose any of our players," Johnson said. "We have a long season ahead of us, and we lost Matthew and we lost a corner to an inside ankle sprain. We hope for the best, but losing someone like Matt is not good because he’s not only a good player but a good leader."
GICC (2-2) .................................. 0 3 7 8—18
Boone Central/NG (4-0) ................. 7 28 14 0—49
BCNG—Kennedy 9 pass from Mazour (Kramer kick), 8:55.
BCNG—Mazour 4 run (Kramer kick), 8:42.
GICC—Sealock 42 field goal, 5:11.
BCNG—Kramer 28 pass from Mazour (Kramer kick), 3:20.
BCNG—J. Brugger 23 run (Kramer kick), 1:19.
BCNG—Glidden 30 pass from Mazour (Kramer kick), 0:10.
BCNG—Henry 46 interception return (Kramer kick), 8:15.
BCNG—Pelster 41 run (Johnson kick), 2:57.
GICC—Pfeifer 28 pass fromBrokaw, 0:29.
GICC—Anspauch 5 run (Wenzl pass from Anspauch), 0:55.
RUSHING—BCNG, Mazour 9-64, Palster 4-46, J. Brugger 3-34, Glidden 1-12, King 3-11, Ketteler 1-6, M. Brugger 1-5, O’Brien 1-3, Arreguin 4-3, Gottier 1-0, B. Kennedy 3-(minus 6). GICC, Pfeifer 8-39, Rork 12-35, Boon 8-33, Anspauch 4-18, Arends 3-15, Wenzle 1-15, Jarecke 2-13, Brokaw 5-7, Bales 1-5, Ghaifan 1-4, Adenti 2-1.