Cardinals prevail after losing their QB and outlast Rebels

Published 2:02 pm Saturday, September 3, 2022

ADAMS — The Cardinals started the defense of their nine man state football title with a stroke of bad luck, but they rebounded to slip past Southland 14-12 in Adams Saturday, after the second half had been delayed 14 hours due to thunderstorms.

L-O lost senior quarterback Layne Bird to a serious injury in the first quarter Friday night, but it bounced back on Saturday as the Cards drew an off-sides call to convert a fourth and five on their first drive of the second half and Peyton Roe eventually gave his team a 14-12 lead when he burst in for a two-yard TD to make it 14-12 with 5:13 left in the third quarter.

Roe, a senior running back, can relate to Bird’s setback as Roe was injured in L-O’s opening game last year and he had to watch the Cards’ first ever state title from the sidelines while recovering.

“It felt great to be out there. I really love putting on the pads and running the ball. I put my head down and keep going,” Roe said. “This game was won for Layne, because he broke his leg. It was all for him.”

The Rebels (0-1 overall) looked like they were going to take the lead right back when Noah Bauer hit Jack Bruggeman for a 16-yard gain and then found Riley Jax for a 21-yard gain to get to the one-yard line late in the game. But Bauer was stopped for a four-yard loss on first down, the Rebels lost five more yards on an errant snap on second down and L-O’s Camden Hungerholt picked off a pass in the end zone on third down.

“I saw the man running a drag, I read it and I saw the quarterback staring him down,” Hungerholt said. “I ran it down, caught it and I started running.”

Hungerholt’s interception came off of Southland’s back-up quarterback Maverick Hanna as Bauer was injured on the second down run. L-O head coach Trevor Carrier said he brought a blitz on the third down play to force the issue.

Carrier was pleased with how his team prevailed in the face of some big time adversity on the road.

“Layne Bird was out and they were double teaming Tristan (Lewison). Ryder Stern was out too and we were really down,” Carrier said. “I told the coaching staff that we had to get our guys in position to play. I’m very proud of the staff and I’m very proud of the kids for playing hard. We talk about a championship pedigree. We lost talent (from last year) and we’ve got new guys on top of the guys who were supposed to be replacing them. I’m proud of our depth and how we kept playing hard. That’s all we can ask for.”

After Hungerholt’s interception, the Cardinals were able to run out the final four minutes of the game. Hungerholt found Carter Sweeney for a 39-yard pass on third and 10 and Hungerholt was face-masked to convert a first down on fourth and nine with 1:48 left in the contest.

The first half of the game was played Friday night under humid conditions before the thunderstorms halted action.

Bauer was stopped for a loss on four of his first six carries and had just three yards passing on his first four attempts, but things slowed down for him. Bauer hit Tyson Stevens for a 23-yard completion before finding Riley Jax for a 15-yard TD to pull the Rebels within 7-6 in the first quarter and Bauer hit Jack Bruggeman on a 13-yard TD strike on fourth and goal to give the Rebels a 12-7 lead right before the half.

Unfortunately for the Rebels, Bauer, who threw for 143 yards and two scores, was out on the team’s final offensive play of the game.

“Noah Bauer did an excellent job at quarterback once he kind of relaxed a little bit,” Southland head coach JJ Galle said. “Riley Jax was big on defense and offense. He played a really well rounded game. All of our guys have really gelled and we’ve focused on being a team only. We don’t have individuals. Mav felt really bad about that interception, but I told him that’s a tough spot to be put in.”

SOUTHLAND STATS

Rushing: Riley Jax, 1-for-44; Jack Bruggeman, 2-for-30; Isaac Felten, 5-for-26; Noah Bauer, 13-for-11

Passing: Bauer, 9-for-16, 143, 2 TDs; Maverick Hanna, 0-for-1, INT

Receiving: Bruggeman, 3-for-68, TD; Riley Jax, 2-for-36, TD; Tyson Stevens, 1-for-23; Isaac Felten, 1-for-19

Defense: Riley Jax, 1 interception

Penalties: 9-for-55

LO STATS

Rushing: Camden Hungerholt, 24-for-70; Peyton Roe, 14-for-53, TD; Layne Bird, 2-for-12; Tristan Lewison, 2-for-(-13)

Passing: Hungerholt, 4-for-6, 159, TD, INT; Bird, 0-for-1

Receiving: Sweeney, 3-for-124, TD; Lewison, 2-for-35

Defense: Malyk Schaeffer, 2 sacks; Christopher Knode, 2 sacks; Camden Hungerholt 1 interception

Penalties: 7-for-50

SCORING SUMMARY

LO 7  0 7 0  –  14

Southland 6  6 0 0  –  12

First quarter

(LO) Carter Sweeney 85 pass from Camden Hungerholt (3 plays, 85 yards) (Malyk Schaeffer kick) 4:40

(S) Riley Jax 15 pass from Noah Bauer (kick failed) (7 plays, 80 yards) :29

Second quarter

(S) Jack Bruggeman 13 pass from Bauer (run failed) (8 plays, 94 yards) 1:49

Third quarter

(LO) Peyton Roe 2 run (Schaeffer kick) (12 plays, 55 yards) 5:13

Fourth quarter

No scoring