BLACKFOOT — It was senior night at Blackfoot High School as the Blackfoot Broncos tangled with cross county rival Shelley for a High Country Conference tilt on the grid iron.
Playing in a steady drizzle for the entirety of the game, the two teams slugged it out with Blackfoot pulling away in the second half for a 28-0 victory.
"We did a lot better job in the second half defensively," Blackfoot head coach Stan Buck said. "The kids really stepped it up and played well, especially in the second half."
Shelley had an opportunity to take the lead in the first quarter of play when they turned to their ground game for a drive that moved the ball down to the Blackfoot 4 yard line. A fourth down play came up inches short however as the Blackfoot defense stiffened when they had to thwart the scoring opportunity.
"We should have gotten a touchdown there," Shelley head coach Dwight Richins said. "That hurt us. You just can't go against a good team like Blackfoot and miss out on an opportunity like that and hope to win. If we get that there, we could have at the very least gone into the half tied at seven."
Meanwhile, the Shelley defense was also turning in big plays as they held the high scoring Broncos without a score for most of the first half but a Trae Pilster 1-yard touchdown plunge with 2:58 remaining in the half gave the Broncos the 7-0 lead heading into the locker room. The big play on the scoring drive was a 33-yard pass from Pilster to Colby Pearson on third down which put the ball on the 4-yard line for the Broncos.
"I thought that we threw the ball pretty well but Shelley made some nice plays in the secondary against us," Coach Buck said. "I thought that Trae threw the ball pretty well with the conditions. There were a few opportunities that we missed with dropped balls."
"We were aware of Pilster and Pearson especially because that combination can be deadly," Coach Richins said. "I thought that McKay [Cannon] did a pretty good job on Pearson. He had that one big play where he just made a great play on the ball."
Blackfoot extended their lead to 14-0 courtesy of a 1-yard Ryan Gallegos touchdown run and a Luis Oseguera point after kick with 3:01 remaining. Gallegos finished the night with 53 yards rushing on 15 carries.
"We would like to get some of our players back that are injured but I think that Ryan and Colton Dance are doing a good job and we will have to start working some other kids in and we have some kids that I think can make a difference," Coach Buck said.
Blackfoot salted the game away in the fourth quarter as Pilster collected a pair of rushing touchdowns in the frame. The first came from 9 yards out with 11:17 remaining and the second from 23-yards out as Pilster shredded the Shelley defense with a darting run up the middle for the 28-0 bulge. Pilster finished the evening with 99-yards on the ground and three touchdowns and 128-yards passing on 5 of 19 throwing.
"Pilster started running the ball on us there in the second half," Coach Richins said. "He's shifty. He's a crafty kid that can hurt you running as well as hurt you throwing."
Turnovers were the biggest key in the game as Blackfoot forced a trio of Shelley turnovers which turned momentum to the Blackfoot sideline.
Both teams will be back in action next Friday with Shelley (3-3, 1-2) hosting Hillcrest and Blackfoot (6-0, 3-0) traveling to Bonneville. Both games are scheduled for a 7 o'clock kick off.
SHS 0 0 0 0 - 0
BHS 0 7 7 14 - 28
Shelley: passing - Kaden Schmidt 7-20 INT; rushing - Kaden Schmidt 6-27, Tate Foster 13-33, Will Huntsman 3-7, McKay Cannon 5-12, Dalton Robison 2-15, Tate Brown 3-12, Chase Call 2-13; receiving - Tate Foster 1-10, McKay Cannon 3-21, Garret Nelson 1-10, Chase Call 1-8
Blackfoot: passing - Trae Pilster 5-19 128; rushing - Trae Pilster 12-99 3TD, Ryan Gallegos 15-53 TD, Colton Dance 1-6, Ryan Murdoch 1-1; receiving - Colby Pearson 2-82, Colton Dance 3-46