Football wins annual Cat Clash

“I really thought we had our best week of the year practice wise. We had a really good week--even through the heat we were practicing and I thought the kids did an outstanding job,” -Head Coach Kelly Donohoe

October 4, 2018

By Alexandria Arndt

Images by Koda Maskill

On Friday, September 21st, the annual Cat Clash football game ended  in a 35 – 17 victory for the BSHS Wildcats. For varsity starters seniors quarterback Koby Mansfield and outside linebacker Collin Deshazo, this game took on a different meaning.

“Other than just being South, we played with these kids in little league and everything, it’s just a tight bond,” Mansfield said. “We practiced extremely hard just because we don’t want to lose this game and it’s just a lot of pressure and focus,” he added.

For Deshazo, the event took on a bigger meaning than the game itself.

“Yeah it’s a big South rivalry game, but we got to know all of them really well. I knew a few of them but once we went down to Jamaica on the missions trip together I got to get even closer to them and it’s formed an even bigger bond than we had before,” Deshazo said.

Wins or losses aside, Deshazo described the team aspect as being the most important thing.

“It’s (Wildcat football) just a great tradition. It’s a great team to be a part of. I wouldn’t want to be a part of anything else,” he said.

Mansfield spoke highly of the football program as well.

“It’s a great thing to be a part of. I’ve been here four years and I would never want to be anywhere else,” Mansfield said.

These band of brothers felt their preparation warranted the win

“On defense we just try to prepare as much as possible; if it’s a big game we will typically be in the film room way longer just trying to get everything settled in,” Deshazo said.

While Deshazo spoke from a defenders view, Mansfield gave insight to the offense’s preparations.

“On the quarterback’s side, Coach D and I just talk about everything a thousand times over and over again, so it’s always going through my mind and I know what I’m doing to help keep me calm,” Mansfield explained. “I can never get too focused, I always have to be playing around. I hate going into the game super focus or stressed out so I have to be messing around with my teammates to keep calm,” He added.

And for the practices themselves, Coach Kelly Donohoe believed those leading up to the South game were some of their best.

“I really thought we had our best week of the year practice wise. We had a really good week–even through the heat we were practicing and I thought the kids did an outstanding job,” Donohoe said.

In fact, Donohoe praised both effort and skill as strengths for the Cats.

“Our kids are all good players: defensively we’re a good football team, and offensively we’re a good football team, so we just felt going into that game that if we just played well, didn’t turn the football over, we would have a good chance to be successful because we have a lot of confidence in our kids right now,” Donohoe said.

The game did present opportunities for improvement for the Cats. Deshazo cited a few technique fixes that would help the team get better with each week, while Mansfield wishes he hadn’t thrown his first interception of the year. However, both players and Coach Donohoe gave credit to senior running back Nick Wood, who was injured during the beginning of the year and had to miss the first couple of games, for making the most unforgettable play that night with a 90 yard touchdown.

Watching the seconds tick by to the victory on their last game over South gave senior Wildcats a feeling of intense excitement.

“It was a great feeling. I love just turning around looking at the crowd; everybody was jumping and hyped up. It was a great feeling and as our last one that’s how I wanted it to end,” Deshazo said.

Mansfield agreed that there couldn’t have been a better ending to the night.

“There’s a good chance we won’t see these guys again, so the way we ended this game was a perfect ending for me and my teammates,” Mansfield agreed.

Currently the Cats are 5 – 2 and are positive about their post season chances.

“I know we’ve had a couple of losses and we even had one where we scored zero points. We had a blowout, but I mean that’s what happened last year; we started off one and two and then we came back and went to the state title, so I’m not going to put anything out of my head so I believe we can get there,” Mansfield said.

Donohoe noted that improving in little areas is the key to playing their best at the end of the season. Typically, a Kansas City powerhouse steps up as an obvious team to beat in the postseason, but Donohoe hasn’t seen that team emerge just yet.

“I don’t know if we’re in that equation yet, I don’t know if people are talking about us like we’ll be there at the end; we think we will but when you lose a couple games early people tend to think there’s a lot of kink in your armor. We just have to keep working every week and then I think if that happens come week 10 when the playoffs start we’re going to be really excited about where we could get to with this team,” Donohoe said.

The Cats hope to secure another win tomorrow night at home against Liberty North.

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