Mitchell’s offense quiet in home-opening gameBig plays hurt the Mitchell High School football team as the Kernels fell 28-0 in front of an estimated 1,200 fans in their home opener to Brookings in an Eastern South Dakota Conference high school football game Friday at Joe Quintal Field.
By: Kevin Pottebaum, The Daily Republic
Big plays hurt the Mitchell High School football team as the Kernels fell 28-0 in front of an estimated 1,200 fans in their home opener to Brookings in an Eastern South Dakota Conference high school football game Friday at Joe Quintal Field.
Brookings running back Michael Daniel got the Bobcats on the board on the team’s first drive with a 24-yard rushing touchdown on fourth down. That score, which resulted from an interception he recorded, was the shortest scoring play of the game.
The Bobcats scored one touchdown in each quarter and kept Mitchell’s offense at bay all game long.
“We came out and just reacted to what Brookings did instead of going out and trying to set the tone,” Kernels coach Kent VanOverschelde said. “Our reaction was one of somewhat surprise. We saw some things that we hadn’t seen the week before and we were affected by it instead of going out and making things happen.”
Daniel dominated the Kernels’ defense, finishing with 225 yards rushing on 15 attempts and had three of Brookings’ four touchdowns. He had scores of 98 and 51 yards in the game.
“The guys up front are the ones that did the job,” Daniel said. “A lot of my long yards, I was untouched.”
Brookings added a 51-yard touchdown pass from backup Seth Fraser to Seth Moret with 1:09 remaining.
Brookings outgained Mitchell 439-164 in yardage in the game and rushed for 291 yards, compared to Mitchell’s 70.
“The defense played well … and got the shutout,” Brookings coach Lee Schmidt said.
Mitchell’s offense seemed to be clicking at times early in drives in the opening quarter, but the team was unable to continue those drives.
The Kernels had the ball to begin the game and quarterback Matt Larson rushed for nine yards on the first play. Two plays later, Mitch Johnson carried the ball for 11 yards and a first down, the first of the game.
After Daniel intercepted Larson and scored on his 24-yard carry, the Kernels got a 7-yard carry to start their second drive, but it ended with a three-and-out.
Mitchell began its next drive with a 12-yard reception from Landon Neugebauer, but couldn’t get another first down on the drive.
“We just didn’t seem to get on track,” VanOverschelde said. “We never regained our confidence on the line after not moving forward.”
Trailing throughout the game, Mitchell’s offense took to the air more than it its opening game against Watertown.
In the Kernels 22-14 loss to the Arrows last week, Mitchell threw the ball 12 times. Friday against Brookings, Larson was 12-of-23 passing for 62 yards. Kanin Nelson was 2-of-5 for 32 yards after coming in at the end of the game.
“We stood in the pocket well and completed some passes,” VanOverschelde said.
VanOverschelde also gave his defense credit as it prevented the Bobcats’ passing attack from having success. Brookings’ Kaleb Vig was 7-of-20 passing for 97 yards. Fraser was 1-of-1 for 51 yards and a touchdown on the team’s final drive.
The one performance from Mitchell that seemed to have people talking was punter Nathan Wahlen. Wahlen punted the ball eight times for 350 yards, averaging 43.8 yards per punt. His long kick of the night went for a 63-yard punt and the junior forced the Bobcats to start inside their own 20 twice.
“The most remarkable and most noticed performance was Nathan Wahlen,” VanOverschelde said. “He’s a hard worker and he’s stayed extra time to try to make some improvements and proved that if we can put everything together it’s going to be an effective weapon for field position.”
The win improved Brookings to 2-0 overall, both ESD wins, while Mitchell dropped to 0-2 overall and in the conference.
Mitchell looks to bounce back against Aberdeen Central Friday at Joe Quintal Field in Mitchell. Brookings returns to action against Brandon Valley Friday in Brookings.
NOTES: Mitchell attempted a hook-and-lateral play late in the second quarter. Larson completed the pass to Wahlen, who went to pitch the ball to Neugebauer by design, but the ball ended up falling to the ground and Brookings recovered to gain possession. The Bobcats drove down the field and completed a fourth-down pass within the 5-yard line with less than five seconds remaining and attempted to call timeout, but it was not granted and the half ended. … Mitchell had 11 first downs in the game, but only managed to move the chains multiple times during a drive twice. Brookings had 16 first downs in the game.
BROOKINGS 28, MITCHELL 0
Brookings … 7 7 7 7 — 28
Mitchell …… 0 0 0 0 — 0
B — Michael Daniel 24 run (Chris Schneider kick) 5:43
B — Daniel 98 run (Schneider kick) 6:41
B — Daniel 51 run (Schneider kick) 7:45
B — Seth Moret pass from Seth Fraser 51 (Schneider kick) 1:09
Rushing — Mitchell, Mitch Johnson 10-33, Matt Larson 10-27, Landon Neugebauer 10-22, Kanin Nelson 1-minus 5, Evan Mastel 1-minus 7. Brookings, Michael Daniel 15-225-3, Cody Shepardson 6-23, Dayton Bender 3-20, Kaleb Vig 4-18, Hunter Irvine 1-4, Devon Crandall 1-2, Wyatt Resmen 1-minus 1.
Passing — Mitchell, Larson 12-23-62-1, Nelson 2-5-32. Brookings, Vig 7-20, Seth Fraser 1-1-51-1.
Receiving — Mitchell, Neugebauer 5-39, Mastel 4-32, Ethan Jones 2-10, Johnson 1-13, Beau Brown 1-4, Nathan Wahlen 1-minus 4. Brookings, Zach Page 2-46, Daniel 2-21, Bender 2-16, Seth Moret 1-51-1, Jon Lehman 1-14.
Defensive Leaders — Mitchell, Kirby Fuerst (nine tackles), Mitch Morgan (nine tackles). Brookings, Daniel (interception).