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Sunday, May 1, 2016

Bobcats snap three game skid

Thursday, September 27, 2012

Gaining and maintaining outstanding field position and capitalizing on Houston turnovers, the Thayer Bobcats dominated the Houston Tigers, 50 - 7, at Houston on Sept. 21, 2012

After a three down first series for the Bobcats, Levi Hargrove booted the football deep into Tiger territory. Thayer got great downfield pursuit on the punt, to hold the Tiger return to only three yards. Houston's first play from scrimmage resulted in a fumble, with the Bobcat's recovering the ball at the ten.

Thayer's junior quarterback Mitch Webber rolled out to his left and floated a pass over the Tiger defense to wide out Jacob Foley, who crossed the end stripe for the first six points of the game.

The Bobcat offensive line held off the Houston defense just long enough for Webber to slide to his right and hit Thayer's 6'3" sophomore, tight end Payton Risner, for a successful two point Bobcat conversion. 8-0 Bobcats.

With 3:52 remaining in the first quarter, Thayer's big boys up front, held the Tiger defense at bay, allowing QB Webber to find Levi Hargrove open on the right side line. Hargrove's catch and sprint to the end zone for a Bobcat TD was called back on a Bobcat flag (not enough men on the line of scrimmage), and a five yard penalty. The Bobcat's lined up for a first and fifteen, at their own forty seven. The Bobcat "O" line gave Webber a chance to drop back and find Shelby Barton in the flat. Shedding one would be tackler, Barton powered down the right sideline headed for the end zone and a Bobcat score. Landon Tyler's point after kick sailed through the uprights to put the Bobcats on top, fifteen zip.

With just over one minute left to play in the first quarter, Houston was faced with a forth down and one yard to go, on their own thirty yard line. Thayer's defense stopped the Tiger advance, short of the first down marker, to take possession of the ball and end the first quarter in the lead fifteen -- zero.

Power running up the middle by Barton and Alford moved the sticks and got the Bobcats closer to the end zone in the second quarter. From the four yard line, Mitch Webber rolled to his right and strong armed a pass to the end zone. While Thayer's Jacob Alford slipped on the grass and was laying flat on his back in the end zone, he somehow hauled in the pass for six more Bobcat points. Lining up in the swing gate formation, for the point after attempt, Houston's defense did not react well, leaving the line uncovered. Thayer's center flipped the ball to Ridge Burke, who darted over the left side into the end zone for the two point conversion. 23 to nothing Bobcats.

Houston's powerful fullback Kaden Miller was able to advance for a couple of first downs before a Tiger pass attempt, up the right side, deflected off of a Houston receiver's hands, and Bobcat defender Hunter Ary picked off the ball. Ary's thirty yard return run was called back on a Bobcat infraction, with Thayer retaining ball possession, first and ten on the thirty nine.

The Bobcats struck fast, with a Webber to Hargrove pass and long run for six more Thayer points. Quarterback Webber is also the extra point attempt holder. After he bobbled the snap from center, he picked the ball up, scrambled to his right and lofted a pass to the back of the end zone. Thayer's Payton Risner extended every bit of his 6'3" frame to pull in the two point conversion.

The Tigers had possession of the ball and attempted to pick up a first down on a fourth and one, near mid-field. Thayer's defense stood up and the Tiger offense pushed the pile in what looked like a rugby "Scrum." As Houston inched the pile of players forward and Thayer pushed back, the officials never blew a whistle to call the play dead. Bobcat Shelby Barton came out of the pile of players with the ball. Barton looked at the officials, took a few steps, then looked at the side line. Coaches Billy Webber, Matt and Marc Pitts, along with the entire Bobcat bench were pointing and yelling "Go! -- Go -- Go." Barton took off and sprinted in for another Thayer TD. The extra point kick went low, but the Bobcats were on top by thirty seven.

Good downfield coverage from Thayer's special teams, forced the Houston kick returner to zigzag, when a strong tackle forced a fumble. The Bobcat's recovered for a first and ten on the twenty three. Keeping the ball on the ground, Thayer's Jacob Alford found a lane and the goal line, around the left side of the offensive line of the Bobcats. Tyler's PAT kick sailed wide right as time ran out in the first half.

Houston attempted to go to the air, mid way in the third quarter but Bobcat defensive pressure forced a quick throw, which resulted in another Thayer interception, with Alford returning inside the red zone. Webber then punched across the goal line and six more for Thayer points. Tyler's PAT kick was true for a 50-0 Bobcat advantage.

Thayer defense held tough until the forth quarter, when Houston mustered a successful drive on the ground, which resulted in a TD and good PAT for a 50-7 final score -- and a much needed morale and confidence booster for the young Thayer Bobcats.

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