Western Nebraska Observer - Observations all along the line - Kimball & the Southern Panhandle First

Horns Fall to Southern Valley


Vicki Stull

Colton Stull prepares to throw a pass as AJ Spicer rushes to defense

The Kimball High Longhorn Football Team suffered their first loss of the season Friday night at Keith Staehr Field losing to Southern Valley 20-17 just when it looked like they had a win locked up.

The visiting Eagles struck first driving 80 yards in 6 plays following a Kimball punt with Jeremiah Perkins throwing to Hunter Quinn for a 19 yard touchdown with 5:59 remaining in the 1st quarter. After Enrique Cajero pinned the Eagles back at their own 3 yard line with a booming 41 yard punt, the Eagles got out of trouble with a run for a first down and then Christian Lewis broke loose for a 87 yard sprint down the east sideline for another touchdown and when Quinn threw complete to Perkins for the 2 point conversion, the Eagles led 14-0 with 1:34 yet to play in the opening period.

Things may have been looking bleak at this point for the Horns but they carne back strong. After an Eagle punt the Horns started at their own 35 with Jon Withrow promptly busting for a 25 yard run. Colton Stull had some key passes on the drive hitting Michael Ferguson for an 8 yard gain, and Jon Withrow for 21 yards.

A penalty call had set the Horns back canceling a big run by Angel Flores, but Stull found Jaden Withrow open in the end zone for a 23 yard touchdown pass with 5:12 left in the half and Cajero kicked the PAT to close to 14-7.

Kimball mounted another drive in the second period that resulted in the tying TD taking over at their own 21 following a punt.

The Horns got good runs from Withrow and Stull was going to the. air for key yards hitting Tyler Magninie for 12 yards, Ferguson for 10 more, Jaden Withrow for 7. With a 4th and 1 situation Stull kept on a quarterback sneak for a first down at the Eagle 15. With time running out Stull spiked the ball to stop the clock, threw incomplete, and then hit Jon Withrow for a 15 yard scoring strike with 10.7 seconds left in the opening half. Cajero's kick tied the game at 14 as both teams went to the locker room, although Southern Valley chose to stay on the field in a light rain fall.

Kimball took the lead in the 3rd period using the talented toe of Enrique Cajero to secure a 30 yard field goal with 5:19 showing on the clock. A holding penalty had cancelled out an 11 yard touchdown pass from Stull to Angel Flores a few plays earlier. Kimball held the 17-14 lead going into the fourth quarter and they were dominating for the most part.

With the wind at their back for the final period Kimball kept the visitors pinned deep in their own territory and penalties were hurting both teams. Trent Rutledge and AJ Spicer broke through to throw the Eagles for an 8 yard loss and the Eagles punted from their own end zone into that wind with Kimball taking over at the Southern Valley 31. Withrow had runs of 5 and 6 for a first down, but following another 6 yard run the talented back lost a fumble at the Southern Valley 11 but 3 plays later he redeemed by recovering an Eagle fumble at the Southern Valley 10 yard line.

The Horns were right back in business but a big Kimball penalty moved them back to the 25 yard line and then it happened again with yet another Kimball fumble and the Eagles took over at their own 24 with 4:15 left in the ball game.

Hunter Quinn broke for a 40 yard run to the Kimball 37 yard line. A Kimball face mask call gave them a 1st down at the 25. The Eagles fumbled but made the recovery as Kimball fans held their breath. On a 3rd and 17 the visitors completed a pass to Quinn for a first down at the 13. Spicer broke through for a 2 yard loss tackle, but Perkins found Quinn in the end zone for a 15 yard touchdown with 1:31 left in the ball game and despite missing on the PAT, the scoring for the night was over and Southern Valley came back for the 20-17 victory after things looked so promising for the home team.

Coach Nick Kuxhausen said "It was disappointing lose this one but I am proud of the way we played. We followed our game plan and it was working but we just didn't take care of the football. It was a very physical game but we need to do a better job of taking care of the football and cutting down on our turnovers and penalties. We out yarded them (Southern Valley) and had the ball in our possession quite a bit more, but give Southern Valley credit, they made some big plays down the stretch to get the win".

A good night for Colton Stull and the passing game as he hit on 12 of 23 attempts for 168 yards with 1 interception and 2 touchdowns. Jon Withrow completed his only pass for 10 yards. Jon Withrow had 4 catches for 58 yards and a touchdown. Michael Ferguson 3 for 26 yards, Jaden Withrow 2 for 31 yards and a touchdown, Trent Rutledge 2 for 55 yards, and Tyler Magninie 1 for 8 yards.

The Horns rushed 43 times for 187 yards with Jon Withrow carrying 30 times for 122 yards, AJ Spicer 9 for 45, and Stull 4 for 20. Kimball ran 67 plays compared to 35 for the Eagles and had 362 total yards compared to 276 total for the winners. It was a night of whistles as Southern Valley was called for 12 penalties and 109 yards and Kimball 8 for 75. Kimball led in most all categories but still came up short on the score board. The 2 lost fumbles hurt!

In the defensive stats department, Damien Rutledge led the tackle chart with 10 including 2 solo stops, AJ Spicer had 6 with 2 solo stops, 2 for loss and l 1/2 sacks, Angel Flores was in on 6 tackles, Jaden Withrow, Ethan Land, and Jon Withrow in on 5 tackles each, Colton Stull and Ben Sauter 4 each, Tyler Magninie, Michael Ferguson, Trent Rutledge, Justin Mohr, and Enrique Cajero all 3 each.

Vicki Stull

Trent Rutledge and Colton Stull play their best in attempt to turn things around with Southern Valley

No serious injuries to report for Kimball despite the hard hitting contest that saw multiple Southern Valley players helped for the field. Michael Ferguson took a hard blow at the end of the game while trying to secure a pass over the middle but is thought to be OK for this week. The Horns travel to Mitchell this Friday for a conference contest with the Tigers who suffered a 56-18 loss to Gothenburg this past Friday. Coach Kuxhausen said Mitchell will be a much better team than they were a year ago and the Horns will have to have a great effort to secure a win. Game time is 7 p.m.

Kimball Southern Valley

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