By MARK HIGH
BOISE — The Blackfoot Bronco drive for a second straight state title came to an end on Saturday afternoon, unfortunately for the Broncos and their fans, the mission came up just short with a 41-28 defeat at the hands of the Bishop Kelly Knights.
“Over all it was a great effort and hopefully they learned and be able to keep this as a life long lesson that all the little things affect the outcomes of situations,” Blackfoot head coach Stan Buck said. “It takes a lot to be on top, a lot of focus, a lot of effort and a lot of work in the off season and I think that our young kids have a good idea of how physical we have to be.”
After a fine defensive stand on the games opening possession the Broncos took over for their first offensive set. Blackfoot was moving the ball very effectively until an interception in the flat was taken back 55-yards for the games first score.
“It was just a miscommunication on the play and those things happen on the NFL level too but it was frustrating to be sure,” coach Buck said.
On the ensuing possession Blackfoot went back to work, chewing off big yards on the drive, showing no ill affects from the games first miscue. With 5:41 remaining in the first quarter Garrett Buck got the Broncos on the board with a punishing 5-yard run but the point after attempt was wide right leaving the Knights with a 7-6 advantage.
“We overcame a lot of adversity to start the game and I was really proud of what we were able to do offensively but we just gave up too many big plays defensively.” coach Buck said.
On the next possession questionable refereeing reared it’s ugly head as Beau Hoskins was called for a phantom pass interference call by the side judge on a big third down play. After the penalty was assessed, the Knights struck pay dirt with a 59-yard touchdown strike and a 14-6 lead.
Undaunted the Bronco offense responded on their next drive, once again moving the length of the field in just under four minutes of play with Buck plunging across the end line from 2-yards out. On the two-point attempt the Broncos were denied and heading into the second quarter Bishop Kelly led 14-12.
The Blackfoot defense turned back the Knight offense on the next drive and the Bronco offense went back to work, shrugging off a trio of holding penalties in the process, the Broncos marched the ball down the field on the arm of Trae Pilster who connected with Hoskins seemingly at will and the feet of Alonzo Ramos who had the vaunted Knight defense grasping at air on more than one occasion.
At the end of the drive, Buck tallied his third touchdown of the game, a 3-yard blast into the end zone. Pilster found Colby Pearson for the 2-point conversion and with 4:37 remaining in the half, Blackfoot held their first lead at 20-14.
Bishop Kelly eventually took the lead before heading into the locker room for the half when a wheel rout from the full back went for 49-yards up the Bronco sideline.
“We were disappointed in how we played in the first half by giving up the big play but like I told the kids, Bishop Kelly made those plays. They have some good athletes which is why they are here.” coach Buck said.
Blackfoot regained the lead on the opening possession of the second half when Pilster hit Ramos for a 24-yard touchdown strike and a 28-21 lead.
On the next defensive possession a missed offensive pass interference call changed the whole complexion of the game however when the Bishop Kelly receiver pushed Ramos to the ground, then snatched the ball out of the air and sprinted into the end zone for the tying score.
That play seemed to suck the life out of the Broncos as they were then outscored 13-0 over the last quarter of play lending to a second place finish.
“It was an outstanding year, it was really fun and it was great to be a part of that,” coach Buck said. “I thanked the seniors for their leadership and then told the underclassmen that hopefully they will learn from this what it takes to be a champion and hopefully we’ll be back here next year.”
BISHOP KELLY 41, BLACKFOOT 28
Blackfoot 12 8 8 0 - 28
Bishop Kelly14 7 7 14 - 42
BK – Hunter Griffith 57 interception return (Antonio Urquidi kick)
BF – Garrett Buck 5 run (Luis Oseguera kick wide right)
BK – Nate Lothrop 58 pass from Jesse Rohr (Urquidi kick)
BF – Buck 2 run (Trae Pilster pass fail)
BF – Buck 3 run (Pilster to Colby Pearson pass)
BK – Cody McCarthy 49 pass from Rohr (Urquidi kick)
BF – Alonzo Ramos 24 pass from Pilster (Pilster to Dallas Bitton pass)
BK – Lothrop 60 pass from Rohr (Urquidi kick)
BK – Andy Harrington 35 pass from Rohr (Urquidi kick)
BK – Rohr 31 run (Urquidi kick wide left)
RUSHING – Blackfoot: Trae Pilster 11-19, Alonzo Ramos 13-70, Casey
Coffey 8-17, Garrett Buck 4-14, Ryan Gallegos 1-(-5). Bishop Kelly:
Hunter Griffith 14-75, Cody McCarthy 10-55, Erik Wylie 4-18, Jo Jo
Harrington 5-43, Jesse Rohr 7-31.
PASSING – Blackfoot: Pilster 23-32-2 235; Ramos 0-1-0 0. Bishop Kelly:
Rohr 8-17-0 256.
RECEIVING – Blackfoot: Beau Hoskins 12-118, Ramos 5-30, Coffey 1-16,
Colton Dance 2-29, Colby Pearson 3-42. Bishop Kelly: Nate Lothrop
4-152, McCarthy 1-49, Griffith 1-15, Andy Harrington 2-40.