Orrick Coach Pat Richard will not be misled by Braymer’s 5-3 record. The Bearcats and Bobcats will renew their old-school CRC battle at 7 p.m. Friday night at Simmons Field in the second game of Class 1 District 12 competition.
The three Braymer losses have been to teams with a combined record of 21-2. Two of those teams are state ranked and undefeated – Hamilton, No. 2 in Class 1 defeated Braymer 37-7, and Higginsville, ranked No. 8 in Class 2 beat the Bobcats 33-8 on opening week. Braymer’s other loss was a 28-27 overtime loss at Rock Port.
The Bobcats, despite drawing 10 penalties for 105 yards, had chances to win the game, but had a missed field goal near the end of regulation and a missed extra point in overtime.
Since dropping three of its first four games, the Bobcats have responded by reeling off four straight victories with three of those coming by shutouts.
“The people they played early were pretty good,” Richard said. “The people they’ve beaten lately are also pretty good, so they’re getting some momentum at the right time for them.”
Braymer’s 28-6 victory last week at St. Mary’s followed the Bobcat formula of having its huge line wear out the Trojans on both sides of the ball. The Bobcats piled up 311 yards on the ground on 42 plays, while limiting St. Mary’s to 67 rushing yards on 29 attempts.
“They’ve got two backs who are grinders and if you miss tackles on them they will make a big play,” Richard said. “They’ve got a quarterback who they have started to run more and more through the year, and he’s a threat running and passing now. They’re making you defend the inside power running, which they have always done, and now you have to defend their quarterback.”
Trent Utt had three of Braymer’s touchdowns last week on runs of 8, 11 and 45 yards, and Trevor Corbin added a 17-yard scoring run.
Orrick had its own tackle-breaking runner last week in the Bearcats’ 53-0 win over Wentworth. Logan Eubank carried just five times for 151 yards and a pair of touchdowns as Orrick ran for 281 yards.
The Bearcats were efficient on offense with their first three plays resulting in touchdowns.
The Bearcat defense continued to throw up a stonewall against opponents. Since its scare with Concordia, Orrick held St. Paul’s to zero rushing yards, and last week held Wentworth to just 42 on the ground.
Last year’s district contest with the Bobcats was a physical battle with the Bearcats taking a 28-6 decision. Richard sees the same type of matchup shaping up Friday night.
“The line is the whole key with them,” Richard said. “They just do a great job of dominating in the middle and up front and that’s how they have some success and it has really gone well for them the past three of four ballgames.”