A young Boone Central football team pushed and pushed at visiting Ord Friday night before succumbing to a 37-20 loss to the Class C1 5th-rated Chanticleers.
Ord, a 2018 C1 state playoff finalist 12 starters, changed the momentum and substance of the contest with the advantage in a key six-play sequence midway through the second quarter.
Boone Central, trailing 17-7, gained a first-and-goal at the Chanticleer two-yard line, only to lose yardage on four consecutive plays and suffer an offensive pass interference penalty that negated an eight-yard touchdown pass. Following that goal-line stand, Ord quarterback Zach Smith connected with Gage Smith for a 46-yard gain, then handed to Tommy Stevens and watched the junior back ramble 24 yards for a touchdown.
From a potential 17-14 game to the reality of a 24-7 Ord lead in six plays.
The Cardinals continued to bedevil the Ord defense with their quickness and scored two additional touchdowns, but the Chants matched each with powerful drives spurred by an offensive line that sported 300, 290, 285 and 250-pound members paving the way for the 185-pound Stevens.
Despite the loss that dropped his team to 0-2, Cardinal Coach Mark Hudson was encouraged by the Cards’ performance.
“The team took some good steps forward this week and competed well against a very good Ord team,” Hudson commented. “We, as coaches, felt they played significantly harder and with less mistakes than week one. Now we need to build on that confidence and continue to grow and get better as the season progresses.”
Ord finished with a 427-332 advantage in total yardage, outrushing the Cardinals 336-165. Boone Central finished with a 167-91 yard edge through the air. Ord had the game’s only turnover and committed seven penalties (65 yards), while BC was flagged just five times (35 yards). The Chants had 23 first downs, Boone Central 21.
Braden Benes paced BC with 101 yards rushing (12 attempts) and 167 yards passing (7-of-23). Wyatt Nissen added 36 yards (13 att.). Dustin Andreason had six receptions for 70 yards and Ryan Kramer made five catches for 36.
Tackle leaders for Boone Central included Bryce Kennedy (6 solo, 3 assists), Cody Maricle (3, 6), Andreason (4, 3), Blaine Young (4, 2), Nissen (4, 1), Dylan Korth (3, 2), Chase Thieman (3, 2) and Gage Groeteke (3, 2).
Boone Central will travel to Columbus Friday to face Lakeview (2-0), currently ranked 9th in Class C1.
“Lakeview is another top ten team and they also have really good size up front,” Hudson noted. “They have a good quarterback this year and he gives them another threat they haven’t had in a while.
“It will be another challenge, bit a great opportunity to continue to get better.”