A Big South victory
Blue Earth Area recorded their first football victory in the newly formed Big South Conference with a 26-8 victory over the Redwood Valley Cardinals. The game was played in Redwood Falls on Sept. 5.
The Buccaneers won the battle in the trenches accumulating 282 yards of total offense while the Buc defense limited the Cardinals to a total of 109 yards.
The Bucs failed to score on their first two possessions. However, their third possession resulted in a touchdown and the lead, which they would not relinquish.
Starting on the Cardinals 48 yard line, the Bucs moved the ball on the ground with quarterback Luke Schavey and running back Brandon Olson advancing the ball to the 35-yard line. Following an incomplete pass, a delay to Conor Barnett resulted in a 13-yard gain to the 22-yard line. A pair of 11-yard runs by Schavey and Barnett respectively gave the Bucs their first touchdown. Sam Hahn’s kick was good and with 3:29 left in the first quarter the Bucs led 7-0.
Redwood Valley found some success on their next possession advancing the ball 41 yards to the Buccaneer 24 yard line. Faced with needing less than one yard for a first down the Cardinals came up short when Schavey tackled the Cardinals’ runner for a six-yard loss.
Blue Earth Area then engineered an eight play, 70-yard drive that ended with a 28-yard touchdown pass to Derek Johnson. Johnson caught the ball on the 21-yard line, spun out of a couple of tackles, picked up some blocks as he raced across the field, and then sprinted down the sideline into the end zone with 9:25 remaining in the first half. Hahn’s extra point was good to make it 14-0 in favor of the Bucs.
There was 5:21 left in the first half when the Bucs once again started a drive on their own 30-yard line. Once again it would take them eight plays to cross the goal line.
The drive started with a one-yard loss before Schavey found some daylight and ran for 28 yards to move the football into Redwood Valley territory at the 43-yard line. Schavey connected with Johnson again for a 13-yard gain that moved the ball to the 30-yard line. A six-yard run by Schavey and two seven-yard runs by Jacob Johnson brought the Bucs to the 10-yard line. Schavey then picked up two more yards before Barnett crossed the goal line with his second touchdown of the evening. The extra point kick by Hahn was good to give the Bucs a 21-0 lead with 1:13 left in the half.
A blocked punt by the Bucs’ Kellen Jacobs gave the Bucs one more scoring opportunity in the first half but Bucs were unable to capitalize on the turnover so the score remained 21-0 at the half.
The defense would record the next points for the Bucs. Redwood Valley had the ball on their three-yard line facing third down and needing 11 yards for a first down. Kolt Gorg burst through the line and dragged the quarterback down in the end zone to score a safety. Two more points for the Bucs gave them a 23-0 lead with 5:31 left in the third quarter.
Hahn would account for the final Buccaneer points of the night early in the fourth quarter. The Bucs had a 10-play drive that stalled at the Cardinal 23 yard line 13 yards short of a first down. The field goal team took the field and Schavey took the snap and placed the ball down at the 29-yard line. Hahn’s kick sailed through the uprights for a 39-yard field goal and a 26-0 Buccaneer lead.
The Cardinals would avoid a shut out with a touchdown with 2:19 showing on the scoreboard in the fourth quarter. A successful two point conversion made the final score 26-8 in favor of the Bucs.
Leading the Bucs in rushing was Schavey with 116 yards on 16 attempts. Conor Barnett rushed 12 times for 49 yards and two touchdowns.
Schavey attempted 18 passes completing seven for 67 yards and one touchdown. Derek Johnson caught three passes for 46 yards and one touchdown.
The defense held Redwood Valley to seven first downs. Jacob Johnson, Barnett, and Schavey all recorded six tackles. Schavey added two sacks and Johnson recorded one. Kolt Gorg had four tackles including one sack for a safety. Kellen Jacobs blocked a punt, Jared Armon had an interception and Derek Johnson had a fumble recovery to add to the defensive effort.
The victory gives the Buccaneers a 1-1 record in the Big South Conference. Their next game is a non-conference clash against cross-county rival United South Central in Blue Earth. Results of that contest will appear in next week’s edition of the Faribault County Register.