CASSVILLE - While the prep football season may have gotten started not all that long ago, it’s never too early to be thinking about the playoffs during a relatively short nine-game season.
For the Cassville Comets, the playoffs won’t be in their future this season unless they win four of their final five games in the Six Rivers conference.
With last Friday night’s 12-7 loss to visiting Belmont, coach Doug Fure’s Comets dropped to 0-3 in league play heading into this Friday night’s road game against Benton-Scales Mound (1-2, 1-2).
Last Friday night’s contest came down to the final seconds, where the Braves were trying to protect a 12-0 lead late in the fourth quarter.
Belmont had gotten a 76-yard TD run from running back Brandon Wedig in the first quarter, followed by a one-yard TD plunge by the junior in the third quarter.
In the first three quarters, Cassville had three possessions end inside Belmont territory, one on downs, one on a punt and another on an interception.
The closest the Comets had gotten to scoring at that point was on a first-and 10 from the 27-yard line. A five-yard loss on a running play by Dallas Bernhardt was then followed by an interception of quarterback Garrett Schauff by Belmont lineman Jesse Richardson.
On their first two possessions of the fourth quarter, Cassville turned the ball over on downs at the Belmont 48 and 34-yard line.
With 3:14 to play in the game and trailing 12-0, the Comets were unable to convert on a fourth-and-three from Belmont’s 34-yard line.
Looking to run out the clock and go home with a win, the Braves turned the ball over on their own 35-yard line when Garrett Schauff recovered a fumble with 2:47 showing on the game clock.
Cassville took 1:06 off the clock on eight plays to score their first and only TD in the game, as Dallas Bernhardt found the end zone from three yards out. Schauff added the extra-point kick for the 12-7 score.
The Braves weren’t out of the woods yet though, as they had to recover an onside kick and collect a crucial first down to secure the victory.
Coach Fure’s Comets concluded the night with 150 yard of total offense, rushing for 98 yards and passing for 52.
Garrett Schauff led the Comet rushing attack with 26 yards on five attempts, while completing 6-of-20 passing attempts for 52 yards and one interception.
Dallas Bernhardt was the team’s top receiver with three receptions for 19 yards.
“We had our chances, but we were unable to get the job done,” said coach Fure. “Our problem right now is that we aren’t finishing drives. If we start doing that and putting points on the board early we can beat just about anyone. As a team, we need to stop beating ourselves with little mistakes and penalties.”
Defensively for the Comets, Dallas Bernhardt had a total of 15 tackles, while Schauff was in on 14 stops, including one fumble recovery.
Belmont 12, Cassville 7
(from Friday, Sept. 2)
Belmont 6 0 6 0 - 12
Cassville 0 0 0 7 - 7
B - B. Wedig, 76-yard run (kick failed)
B - B. Wedig, 1-yard run (run failed)
C - Dallas Bernhardt, 3-yard run (Garrett Schauff kick)
First downs - B 14, C 11. Rushing - B 50-269, C 31-105. Passing yards - B 10, C 43. Passes - B 1-4-1, C 5-21-1. Fumbles lost - B 1, C 0. Penalties-yards - B 8-65, C 6-50.
Rushing - B: Brandon Wedig 24-157; C: Garrett Schauff 5-26. Passing - B: Abery Willborn 1-4-1, 10; C: Garrett Schauff 5-21-1, 43. Receiving - B: Haag 1-10; C: Dallas Bernhardt 3-19.