HUMPHREY — Things got real for the Hartington-Newcastle football team last week as the Wildcats saw their record evened up a 1-1 after a tough road game at Humphrey/Lindsey-Holy Family Friday night.
The Wildcats, coming off a 68-0 win over Randolph in week one, fell behind 36-8 by halftime and would fall 64-26.
The Wildcats rushed 46 times for 124 yards and passed for 233 yards.
Jake Peitz had a school-record eight catches for another record, 202 receiving yards, and two touchdowns,
Riley Sudbeck was on target most of the night, connecting on 12-for-16 passing for 229 yards, three touchdowns and one pick while making nine tackles on defense. Lane Heimes added 47 yards rushing and a touchdown.
Carson Sudbeck added eight tackles.
Even though the Wildcat rushing attack was able to churn out over 100 yards, the Bulldog defense didn’t allow the Cats to complete several scoring drives.
“Humphrey/Lindsay Holy Family used their athleticism to really disrupt our running game,” HNS head coach Cory Uldrich said. “They also kept us off balance on defense by effectively mixing in the pass with a good misdirection run game.”
Despite the loss, there were a couple of bright spots for the Wildcats.
“Jake had a huge game in the receiving department. Once we got him going a little bit, it allowed us to run the ball more effectively as H/LHF had to take some guys out of the box and focus their attention on him. Riley threw the ball very well tonight when he had the time to do so, and it shows up in a 75 percent completion rate.”
Peitz believes that the biggest difference in the game came down to play in the trenches.
“We didn’t get off the ball that fast,” Peitz said. “We didn’t play that physical until we picked it up in the second half. They just came out of the gates more physical than us and our defensive responsibilities were not trusting what they were supposed to do. We didn’t make the correct reads when they ran the ball against us.”
Peitz said the Wildcat defense made some mistakes, but that shouldn’t take anything away from the Bulldogs’ effort.
“They are pretty good too. We couldn’t stop the cut back on the road – they’d sweep to one side then cut back and no one was there,” he said.
The Wildcats are now preparing for a visit from West Holt. The contest will begin at 7 p.m. Friday at Russ Hochstein Field.
“West Holt is a team that just took Top 10 Lutheran High Northeast to the wire (in a 30-26 loss),” Uldrich said. “They have a good mix of size and athleticism, so we will have to really be on top of our game to compete with them. They have a couple of really good weapons at running back and receiver, so this is another team that will mix run and pass quite a bit.”
The Husky defense is another thing to be concerned about, Uldrich said.
“They play aggressively defensively and want to disrupt you with their pressure and constant attacking,” he said. “We’ll have to sharpen our offensive execution this week to give them some wrinkles and new looks that may slow them down a bit.”
Peitz said that the loss doesn’t negate the positives from week one.
“I feel we have a lot to work with,” Peitz said. “We have some depth in places which is good. It’s just one loss and our guys aren’t going to give up and fold. We still feel confident in our season. We still have a whole season to play.”
Hartington-Newcastle 0 8 12 6 — 26
Humphrey LHF 8 28 16 12 — 64
Passing 13-17-233 ---
Rushing 13-283 22- -4
Total 27-439 29-23
First Downs 20 2
Penalty yds 3-25 2-10
Passing - HNS - Riley Sudbeck, 12-16-229; Lane Heimes, 1-1-4.
Rushing: HNS - Lane Heimes, 9-47; Carson Sudbeck, 12-39; Riley Sudbeck, 11-26; Kale Korth, 3-7; Cole Heimes, 1-5.
Receiving - HNS - Jake Peitz, 8-202; Lane Heimes, 1-12; Carson Sudbeck, 2-11; Carson Jones, 1-4; Shay Dickes, 1-4.
Tackles HNS - Riley Sudbeck, 9; Carson Sudbeck, 8; Lane Heimes, 6; Seth Pinkelman, 5; Jake Peitz, 4; Dayton Sudbeck, 4; Cole Heimes, 4; Turner Dendinger, 3; Reece Morten, 3; Shay Dickes, 2; Kale Korth, 1; Aiden Rosener, 1; Parker Hopping, 1; Mason Buschkamp, 1; Daniel Steffen, 1.