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Published: Saturday, 9/17/2005

Halfback s TD toss catapults Wildcats

BY MARK MONROE
BLADE SPORTS WRITER

NAPOLEON Napoleon coach John Snoad called it a sigh of relief and Bryan coach Brian Arnold said it took the wind out of his team s sails.

Both coaches were referring to the second play of the second half when the Wildcats scored on a halfback pass to open up a tight contest. Napoleon went up 14-0 on the trick play, seized the momentum and went on to defeat Bryan 28-8 last night.

Both teams struggled in the first half as Bryan managed only 54 yards of total offense and punted six times. The Wildcats did not fare much better, gaining 99 yards except for quarterback Brandon Cramer s 64-yard TD scamper for the only points of the half.

Bryan fumbled the ball on the first play of the second half and the Wildcats capitalized immediately. On the very next play, Cramer pitched to Jordan Van Ausdale, who threw a halfback pass to Elliot Vocke. Vocke hauled it in for a 34-yard score to give Napoleon a 14-0 lead just 13 seconds into the third quarter.

That was a sigh of relief, Snoad said. It was a real chess match up until then.

Napoleon, which was playing without its best player, running back Brad Weaver who was out with an undisclosed injury, then scored two more unanswered touchdowns to remain undefeated at 4-0.

You could feel the air come out of our sails, said Arnold, whose team suffered its first setback of the year. We lost our emotion and that s what we feed on.

The Wildcats then held the Golden Bears to minus-8 yards on their next possession and drove 43 yards in 1:50 to go up by three scores. Lucas Oberhaus had a 28-yard gain on the drive and capped it off with a six-yard touchdown run.

Oberhaus finished with 97 yards on 17 carries and scored twice. Oberhaus filled in for Weaver, a senior captain, who led the team in rushing last year and had a team-high 496 this season.

[Oberhaus] is fast and he hits the hole with good speed, Snoad said. We don t dwell on who we don t have. We don t talk about it.

Cramer was 6-of-14 for 81 yards with one TD toss. But his biggest contribution was on the ground as he rushed for 75 yards, including the 64-yarder.

Cramer faked a handoff up the middle, kept the ball on a sweep to the left and went 64 yards untouched down the sidelines and into the end zone for his TD. The play took just 11 seconds and made it 7-0 with 5:33 left in the first half.

No one was there. All I saw was sideline, Cramer said.

He said that Snoad yelled at the team after it punted four times and turned the ball over once on downs and once on an interception in the first half.

The coaches got on us at halftime and everything snapped into place, Cramer said.

The Wildcat defense held Bryan quarterback Jamie Lorentz to 76 yards passing and minus-2 yards rushing. Lorentz came into the game with 586 yards of total offense and four touchdowns.

We knew we had to contain that kid, Snoad said.

The Golden Bears rushed for just 99 yards and did not score until less than three minutes remained, when backup quarterback Sammy Ebersole connected with Broc Combs on an eight-yard touchdown pass.

Contact Mark Monroe at: mmonroe@theblade.com or 419-724-6110.



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