Friday, 17 January 2020
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***BREAKING NEWS***    High School Basketball Postponements for Jan. 17    ***
Local Sports News
Nemaha Central's Defense Big Again in Regional Win Over Rossville
By Jonny Kane
Copyright: MSC Sports

In weeks eight and nine of the high school football season the Nemaha Central Thunder used their defense, not their offense to pick up a district title win over Maur Hill-Mount Academy and a round one playoff win over St. Mary’s.

On Friday night the Thunder defense once again came through forcing a potent Rossville offense into four turnovers to earn a 29-21 overtime victory to advance to the sectional round of the Class 2A playoffs.

Nemaha Central started strong forcing Rossville to punt on their opening possession before going on a 10-play, 60-yard drive that resulted in a Gavin Duryea 1-yard touchdown run giving the Thunder an early 7-0 lead.

Rossville quickly responded with a scoring drive of their own going on an 8-play drive that took just two minutes off the clock and ended with a Woodrow Rezac 5-yard run to tie the game up at 7.

The Bulldawg defense would then force three straight punts from Nemaha and took advantage scoring on a 1-yard run by Tyree Sowers to take a 14-7 lead into halftime.

The lead could have been even bigger for Rossville at halftime, but Zac Kramer came up with a key interception in the end zone to stop a deep Bulldawg drive.

Out of halftime the Thunder got a great kick return by Duryea and tried to take a shot on one of the first plays from scrimmage, but Dylan Schultejans was intercepted at the 3-yard line.

Nemaha Central’s defense came up big once again and forced another punt before tying the game at 14-14 on a 38-yard dime from Schultejans to Andrew Leonard.

The two teams traded possessions the rest of the third quarter and into the fourth before the Thunder made the first big play.

Rossville was forced to punt deep in their own territory and on the punt Nemaha Central’s Bryce Uphaus caught a shanked ball near the Thunder sideline and took it 40 yards for a touchdown and the lead, 21-14, with only 5:12 remaining.

The pressure was then fully on the Bulldawgs but they never faltered going on a 10-play, 80-yard drive to tie the game on a Torrey Horak to Tyree Sowers 8-yard touchdown pass.

Both teams had opportunities late but neither found a way to score which forced overtime.

The Thunder started with the ball in overtime and only needed two plays before Gavin Duryea scored from a yard out. Nemaha Central then called a timeout and decided to go for two and got it as Schultejans ran in the 2-point conversion untouched.

The game then ended just like it started with the Thunder defense getting a stop as they held the Bullawgs out of the end zone from the 3-yard line to end the game, 29-21.

Nemaha Central finished with just 199 total yards of offense compared to Rossville’s 383, but the Thunder defense racked up three interceptions and four turnovers for the third consecutive game.

Gavin Duryea finished with 83 yards on the ground and two touchdowns in the win, while Dylan Schultejans threw for 83 yards and one score.

Nemaha Central (8-2) will once again be on their home turf next week in the sectional round as they will host Humboldt (10-0) who defeated Chrokee-Southeast Friday night 60-14.

Rossville ends their season with a record of 7-3 and lose just three senior starters heading into next season.

©2020 MSC Sports
Hiawatha, KS 66434
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