Photos in article by Staci Otts
Friday night – FTW Western Hills vs Kennedale Wildcats at Kennedale Wildcat Stadium, 7:30 pm.
In a 6/4A clash of unbeaten teams last Friday night at Kennedale Wildcat Stadium, the Kennedale Wildcats (5-0-1, 4-0) scratched out a win over the Benbrook Bobcats (3-4, 3-1) in overtime to take sole possession of 1st place.
Billed as the district championship as both teams went undefeated in their zones, it didn’t disappoint. The visiting Bobcats, who are in their 5th year playing football, was were not intimated on this night by the Kennedale Wildcats who have defeated the Bobcats the past two years. 49-21 and 52-14.
Kennedale, who came into the game averaging just shy of 43 points an outing, did all they could to manage 16 points off of one touchdown and three field goals. The Wildcats were stymied by the aggressive play by Benbrook who never tackled just one on one but in a group – two, three or more at a time. The aggressive defensive play also knocked the Wildcats off-step on offense, causing mental mistakes that often resulted in penalties, 12 for 101 yards for the game.
Defense saves the day …
It was the defense of Kennedale that kept the game in reach by getting two interceptions, scoring the Cats’ sole touchdown, recovering one fumble, and nearly annihilating the Benbrook running game. The Bobcats came into the game averaging 196.5 yards on the ground but managed just 23 on this night. With the ground game shut off, the Bobcats turned to the air for 183 yards.
Team stats …
For the game, Kennedale put together 259 yards (230 by rush and 29 by air) earning 11 first downs in the process. RB Ife Current (SR) got his first 100 yard game for the Wildcats with 113 on 22 carries. RB Marlete Joyner (SR) came close with 97 yards on 20 carries. QB Jeremiah Myers (SO) was 3-7 passing for 29 yards.
Benbrook had 206 total yards (183 by air and 23 by ground) with 10 first downs. QB William Green (SR) was 12-32 passing with one TD and 2 interceptions. He connected with Demetrio Brown (SR) for 58 yards and a TD. Dontre Sinegal (JR) recorded 7 receptions for 86 yards. Dondreone Kennedy (SO) collected 40 yards and 1 TD rushing for Benbrook on 18 attempts and was the team’s top rusher for the night.
Game Summary …
- The game started well for Kennedale as Benbrook fumbled to Kennedale on the BR18. Kennedale unable to overcome a penalty and an 8-yard loss elected to kick a 46-yard field goal by Aidan Birr (JR). Score 3-0
- Following the Kennedale field goal, Benbrook again gave the Wildcats a gift when DB Jaylen Webb intercepted a Bobcat pass, returning it 11 yards. However, the Kennedale Wildcats gave the ball back two plays later on a fumble. Neither team was able to establish a successful offensive drive over the following possessions.
- The Wildcat defense broke the stalemate with an interception at the Benbrook 10 by DB Kameron Salis (SO) and returned it for a TD. The extra point was good and Kennedale finished the first quarter up 10-0.
- Early in the quarter, Benbrook got on the scoreboard on a 70-yard drive which began in the Q1 and was capped by a one-yard run by D Kennedy. The extra-point kick failed. SCORE 10-6.
- Kennedale responded with a 10-play drive that resulted in another Birr field goal, this one for 36 yards. The successful kick was the last score of the first half for either team. SCORE 13-6 Kennedale.
Unofficial halftime stats …
- Kennedale 73 total yards; 72 rushing, 1 yard passing; 1 turnover.
- Benbrook 99 total yards; 26 rushing; 73 passing; 3 turnovers.
- The Wildcats’ opening drive ended 10 play drive later on an unsuccessful 4&1 attempt at the KN 46. Kennedale defense holds as four plays later Benbrook with favorable field position failed to convert on a 4&7 at the KN43.
- Kennedale drove to the Bobcat 10 but on a 4&2, Birr’s field goal attempt went wide. The score remained 13-6 with just over 2 minutes left in Q3.
- The Bobcats responded with a 6 play scoring drive highlighted by a 58 yard TD pass from W. Green to D. Brown. With 19 seconds in Q3 and a successful extra-point kick, the score was knotted at 13.
- It was 4 and out for the Wildcats on their first possession of the last quarter, while the Bobcats managed to reach the KN29 in eight plays, they were unable to convert on a 4&4 after two consecutive incomplete pass attempts.
- It was the Wildcats turn to drive the field, assisted by a 35 yard run by Ife Current, reaching the BR32. On a 4&6, a Wildcat field goal attempt failed as Benbrook defense mash through the line. The score remained tied at 13.
- Benbrook’s next possession went backward after collected a 1st down on the BR46. The Bobcats punted on a 4&24 at the BR32. Kennedale drives the field as the clock ticks in the final few minutes of the game. With a 4&4 at the BR22 and 58 seconds in the game, Kennedale’s third field goal attempt of the second half failed to connect. Benbrook defense had a hand in that one.
- Time ran out for both teams. Kennedale did stop Benbrook in the closing seconds on a 4&5 at the BR38, blocking the Bobcat punt at the BR28. Three plays later with 2 seconds left on the clock and on the BR12, Kennedale elected to go for the field goal and once again Benbrook defenders blocked the kick. SCORE 13-13
- In overtime, each team gets one chance to score 25 yards out from the goal line. Kennedale elected to play defense on the first and Benbrook opened overtime on offense.
- Benbrook was stymied once again by the Wildcat defense and was forced to attempt a 40-yard field goal on a 4&8 at the KN18. It was no good. The score remains tied.
- Kennedale from the BR25 picked up 3 on a run by Ife Current. Marlete Joyner added another 4 yards up the middle. On third down, Current added one more yard and Head Coach Richard Barrett faced a 4&2 at the BR17, He once again turned to Aidan Birr for a 5th try at a field goal, this time from 34 yards out. Kennedale’s line held out the Bobcat defenders long enough for Birr’s kick to sail through the goal post for three.
- Wildcats earned a walk-off win in overtime at Wildcat Stadium on homecoming night 16-13.
Coming up this week is FTW Western Hills @ Kennedale Stadium with kick-off set for 7:30 pm.