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As an overall performance, it had some rough edges. But aside from an unusual rash of penalties and several turnovers, Boone Central/Newman Grove’s 42-0 whitewash of host Grand Island Central Catholic Friday was quite impressive indeed.
The Class C1 9th-ranked Cardinals burst to a 20-0 first-quarter lead over a young GICC squad and finished with their first shutout of the 2015 season while improving to 3-1.
“We came out of the gate really well and were ready to play some football,” Coach Mark Hudson told media following the contest. “Give GICC credit, they wouldn’t go away and fought the entire game.
“We made some mistakes, mental errors and penalties to put ourselves in a bind, but we’ve got some good kids and were able to find some things to overcome those miscues.”
Ah yes, the mistakes and penalties. Too many for a coach’s liking. Ten flags against the Cardinals (75 yards) and two lost fumbles will give the staff ammunition to keep their team’s attention in practice.
But those were still outweighed by Friday night’s positives.
Positives like gaining over 200 more yards than GICC, recording more than twice as many first downs as the Crusaders, piling up 257 yards on the ground while averaging 7.6 yards per carry and forcing four turnovers while keeping the hosts off the scoreboard.
And speaking of good kids, you might have started Friday with senior Kyle Kramer. The 6-foot-4 receiver/defensive back typified BC/NG’s all-around domination by intercepting two Crusader passes – returning one 85 yards for a touchdown – catching a 24-yard touchdown pass from Blaine Kennedy, and booting a 30-yard field goal. Oh, he also blocked a punt for good measure.
The Crusaders may have been checking the game program to see if there was more than one #14 on the Cardinal roster.
Kramer was instrumental in the fast BC/NG start. The touchdown pass reception from Kennedy opened scoring and, after a Cardinal fumble recovery and two-yard Keaton Henry TD run, Kramer boosted the BC/NG lead to 23-0 with his long interception return and field goal.
Kennedy, who finished the night 8-of-16 for 103 yards, threw his second touchdown pass – a 22-yarder to Damian Backus – to put the Cardinals ahead 30-0 at intermission.
From there, it was smothering defense and a conservative, ground-based attack for Boone Central/Newman Grove in the second half.
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