Cyclones punch latest championship ticket

HCHS overcomes early miscues, uses big third quarter to surge past talented Humboldt squad 45-19; Next up: 3A state title game showdown with unbeaten Boyden-Hull/Rock Valley Friday at the Dome

 CEDAR FALLS (Nov. 13) -- In the end, Harlan Community’s big-game, big-play ability compensated for a shaky night of self-inflicted errors.
 For the second straight year and the 22nd time in school history, the top-ranked (3A) Cyclones will be playing for a state football championship.
 HCHS trailed 6-0 just two plays into Saturday’s Class 3A semifinal vs. Humboldt and led only 14-12 when an errant punt snap resulted in a Wildcat touchdown early in the third quarter.
 The Cyclones regrouped quickly, however, and scored the next 21 points in emphatic fashion, beating the fourth-ranked Wildcats 45-19 in a UNI-Dome clash of unbeatens.
 HCHS (12-0) will now face No. 2 Boyden-Hull/Rock Valley (12-0) in the 3A state title game Friday at 1:00 p.m. back in Cedar Falls. The Nighthawks thumped third-rated Solon 42-0 in the other 3A semi, playing the entire second half with a running clock.
 “It feels good, but we’ve still got a lot of work to do,” said Cyclone junior Aidan Hall, who followed up a 61-yard pick-six touchdown with a 72-yard screen pass TD reception during the third quarter.
 “The first half we struggled a little bit. We’ve got to fix the mistakes that good teams can’t make. We’ve got a full week of practice coming up and we’ll just use that to get better for Boyden-Hull.”
 HCHS head coach Todd Bladt is happy for his players to have another shot at the program’s 13th state title. The Cyclones accepted their ninth runner-up trophy last season after falling to North Scott 30-6 in the championship game.
 “These guys got all the way there last year and then some things went sour on us and we had some sour grapes,” Bladt said, “so they’ve been wanting to finish some unfinished business and now they have the opportunity. It’s in front of them and it’s going to take a week of good, focused practice. We’re going to prepare as well as we can for what Boyden-Hull can throw at us, and I know that’s going to be aplenty.”
 Humboldt, which reached the semifinal round of the playoffs for the first time since winning it all in 2006, finished 11-1 overall. The Wildcats tallied 302 yards and 19 points against a Cyclone defense that had four straight shutouts, but they failed to capitalize on a pair of short-field scoring opportunities in the first half.
 “I told the guys, ‘This is easily the best football year of my life.’ It’s not even close. What these kids have done and where we’ve taken our program in four years is something pretty special,” said Humboldt head coach Derrick Elman.
 “I felt like our kids battled all night long. It was going to be an uphill battle no matter what. That’s the game of football and when you’re at this point you know you’re going to play really, really, good teams. If you want to be one of the best you’ve got to beat the best, and unfortunately we just couldn’t do that tonight. Harlan is a great team. My hats off to them. They had a great game plan, they were prepared and they did a phenomenal job.”
 HCHS junior quarterback Teagon Kasperbauer surpassed 3,000 passing yards on the season, completing 18-of-30 attempts for 338 yards and four touchdowns Saturday night. Hall (147 yards) and Connor Frame (102) led the team in receiving, both grabbing one TD. Jacob Birch, meanwhile, had seven catches for 81 yards and two touchdowns - all in the first half when the Cyclones really needed a spark.

Full story in Nov. 16 Harlan Tribune

Harlan Community 45, Humboldt 19
Humboldt: Caden Matson 83-yd. run (kick blocked) - 1st qt., 10:59.
HCHS: Jacob Birch 9-yd. pass from Teagon Kasperbauer (Stephen Leinen kick) - 1st qt., 7:01.
HCHS: Birch 24-yd. pass from Kasperbauer (Leinen kick) - 2nd qt., 7:41.
Humboldt: Joe Weydert fumble recovery in end zone (pass failed) - 3rd qt., 10:26.
HCHS: Connor Frame 48-yd. pass from Kasperbauer (Leinen kick) - 3rd qt., 9:27.
HCHS: Aidan Hall 61-yd. INT return (Leinen kick) - 3rd qt., 6:48.
HCHS: Hall 72-yd. pass from Kasperbauer (Leinen kick) - 3rd qt., 3:03.
Humboldt: Jacob Heier 30-yd. pass from Matson (Trevor Beach kick) - 4th qt., 11:50.
HCHS: Leinen 31-yd. FG - 4th qt., 6:29.
HCHS: William Kenkel 1-yd. run (Leinen kick) - 4th qt., 0:36.

HCHS                                        Humboldt
17          First Downs                  11
30-66    Rush att.-Yards             30-133
338        Passing Yards              169
404       Total Yards                     302
18-30-0  Comp.-Att.-Int.             10-25-2
3-3        Fumbles-lost                  1-0
0-0        Punts-avg.                      2-38.5
4-33      Penalties-yards              5-45
8-58.2   Kickoffs-avg.                  4-49.0
25:29    Possession time           22:31
8-of-14  Third-down conv.         4-of-12
1-of-3    Fourth-down conv.       1-of-5
3-of-5    Red zone scoring         0-of-2
3-17      Sacks by-yards            0-0
14         Points off turnovers      6

Harlan Community Individual Stat Leaders
    Rushing -- Aidan Hall 14-55, William Kenkel 12-34, Luke Musich 2-6. Passing -- Kasperbauer 18-30-0, 338. Receiving -- Hall 5-147, Connor Frame 4-102, Jacob Birch 7-81, Joey Moser 2-8.
    Kickoff returns -- Moser 3-71.
 Kickoffs -- Stephen Leinen 8-466 (58.2), 2 touchbacks. Field goals -- Leinen 1-for-2 (35 - wide left; 31 - good).
    Tackles -- Lucas Stanley 6.0 (2s/8a), Matthew Sorfonden 5.5 (1s/9a), Zane Bendorf 4.5 (2s/5a), Frame 4.0 (4s/0a), Alex Monson 4.0 (2s/4a), Jameson Bieker 3.5 (2s/3a), Garrett Assmann 3.0 (1s/4a), Brad Curren 2.5 (2s/1a), Wil Neuharth 2.5 (1s/3a), Bret Van Baale 2.0 (4a), Will McLaughlin 2.0 (4a).
 Tackles for loss -- Bendorf 2.0, Stanley 2.0, Bieker 1.5, Assmann 1.0, Neuharth 0.5, Monson 0.5, Sorfonden 0.5. QB Sacks -- Bendorf 1.5, Bieker 0.5, Sorfonden 0.5, Neuharth 0.5.
 Interceptions-return yds. -- Curren 1-10, Hall 1-61 (TD). Pass break-ups -- Assmann 2, Neuharth 2, Bieker 1, Curren 1, Lyon 1. Blocked PAT -- McLaughlin.
Humboldt Individual Stat Leaders
    Rushing -- Caden Matson 16-89, Lance Coon 11-30. Passing -- Matson 10-25-2, 169. Receiving -- Jacob Heier 4-93, Will Orness 2-48, Trevor Beach 2-22.
 Tackles -- Tanner McKimmey 9.5 (6s/7a), Corey Dettmann 7.0 (6s/2a), Matson 6.5 (5s/3a), Christian Alacala 5.5 (2s/7a). Fumble recoveries -- Dettmann, Matson, Joe Weydert (TD).

Read this story and the entire paper for only $1 online

Search back issues, email stories, flip through pages and skim headlines just as you would with a newspaper in your hands.
Create an account and buy a paper anytime you want for only $1 per issue Or buy a year subscription for $39.95



Comment Here