Slow start cost Baldwin in district game against De Soto
The ball bounced the wrong way too often for Baldwin in a 29-16 loss Friday to De Soto.
A Baldwin fumble led to a Wildcat second-quarter touchdown, but the Bulldogs were also unable to take advantage when on a couple of occasions the Wildcats put the ball on the ground. On both occasions, De Soto was able to get on the ball and deny the Bulldogs a chance for the short field.
Baldwin’s two first half turnovers put the Bulldogs in a 21-0 hole early in the second quarter. De Soto picked off a Baldwin pass for an 80-yard touchdown, and took advantage of the Baldwin fumble on its own 20-yard line to score less than 2 minutes later.
Baldwin got back in the game with a 59-yard, 13-play drive late in the second quarter behind the joint battering rams of twin senior running backs Jake and Joel Katzer. Jake Katzer finished the drive with a 1-yard run. A two-point conversion pass from Garrett Burkhart to Jake Katzer brought the Bulldogs to within 21-8 at halftime.
“I told the kids I’m proud of them,” BHS coach Mike Berg said. “They could have given up when the score was 21-0, but they came back and played hard.”
After both teams came up empty in their first two possessions of the second quarter, the Bulldogs put together another of their time-consuming drives. After taking possession on its own 38-yard line, the Bulldogs drove to the Wildcats’ 1-yard line before losing a yard on a mishandled snap on third down. De Soto was able to stop the Bulldogs a yard out on the next play.
The Wildcats then drove 99 yard to go up 29-8, taking all put 1:40 off the game clock.
The stubborn Bulldogs weren’t done and drove for a touchdown, which could be big in district calculations. The touchdown and much of the drive’s yardage came through the air, an encouraging sign for the team. Sophomore Hunter Ramirez, who has been getting snaps in passing downs in recent weeks, completed four passes in the 79-yard drive, including a 9-yard touchdown strike to Joel Katzer with 3.2 seconds to play. He then hooked up with sophomore Garrett Borth on a two-point conversion,
“We’ve improved is some areas from last week,” Berg said. “We’re throwing the ball better, blocking better and tackling better. That was a good team.”
The loss dropped Baldwin to 2-5 overall, and 0-4 in Frontier League play. It also gave the Bulldogs a 0-1 record in district play. The Bulldogs will play at Friday at Ottawa, which also lost in district play Friday to Eudora. Berg said a win was a must if the Bulldogs hope to advance to post-season play.
De Soto 29, Baldwin 16
De Soto (5-2) 14 7 0 8 - 29
Baldwin (2-5) 0 8 0 8 - 16