KILLEEN, TX — The Fall 2022 High School Football Season kicked off tonight, Aug. 26, as the San Angelo Central Bobcats traveled down to Killeen and battled the Killeen Shoemaker Greywolves at Leo Buckley Stadium at 7 pm. Senior QB Tyler Hill looked to lead the ‘Cats to a victory in the season opener.
The 1st quarter kicked off with the Bobcats on offense for the first time this season. KR Cedric Fuentes fielded the opening kick, followed some excellent blocks, and started the ‘Cats with great field position near midfield at the 42-yard line. Three straight runs did not get the job done, and a bad snap on 4th down led to a negative play that gave Killeen Shoemaker their first offensive possession at the San Angelo 36-yard line. The Bobcat defense held Shoemaker to a 4th and inches but then gave up a 28-yard touchdown run on 4th down. A missed extra point kept the score at six, but the Greywolves struck first, 6-0.
Following the touchdown, Fuentes again set the Bobcats in good field position at the San Angelo 40-yard line. The second offensive drive of the night became the Tyler Hill show as he scrambled and passed his way down the field. A 30-yard bomb from Hill to WR Jacob English put the first points of the season on the board for the Bobcats. With 5:39 remaining in the 1st quarter, the ‘Cats took the lead 7-6.
A strong showing from the Bobcats’ front 7 ended the Greywolves’ hopes of an answering score. Three straight plays that went nowhere led to the punt and the ‘Cats' first 3-and-out. The offense took over on their own 40-yard line. The ‘Cats’ offense flowed smoothly with a healthy mix of bruising runs from RB Tyree Brawlee and short but accurate passes from Hill. Faced with a 3rd and 10 at the Shoemaker 28-yard line, the Bobcats failed to convert the first down. K Chase Miller got his first opportunity of the season to shine and converted a 37-yard field goal to increase the ‘Cats’ lead, 10-6.
The 2nd quarter began with the Bobcats on defense with Killeen at their own 30-yard line. Another strong showing from the d-line forced a 3rd and 10. An athletic scramble by QB Malachi Jerome led to a 16-yard gain. A 15-yard face mask penalty to the run set the Greywolves up in Bobcat territory at the San Angelo 37-yard line. QB Jerome broke containment three plays later and scampered 26-yards into the endzone. A penalty negated the touchdown, but the play resulted in a first down at the Central 12-yard line. Three plays later, RB Jerrod Hicks scored from 10-yards out. After a failed 2-point attempt, the Greywolves wrestled back the lead, 12-10.
Tyler Hill took a shot on the first play on the ensuing drive, but the defender stepped in front of the receiver to pick it off. Hill threw his first interception of the year, and the Greywolves took over on the Bobcats’ 38-yard line. Penalties continued to hurt the ‘Cats on defense as unsportsmanlike conduct placed the ball on the Bobcats’ 10-yard line. Two plays later, the Greywolves scored again and led, 18-10.
The Bobcats never figured out how to duplicate the same success that they had in the 1st quarter, going three-and-out on their final two possessions of the half. Killeen Shoemaker added one more score right before the half, a 40-yard bomb to a receiver who beat the secondary but failed the extra point. The ‘Cats headed into the locker room with some serious ground to cover, down 24-10.
Killeen Shoemaker began the 2nd half with the ball on their own 31-yard line. The ‘Cats’ defense struggled to stop the Greywolves’ run game. Missed tackles and over pursuit led to several first downs. The defensive front finally came up with a huge play when DL Caden Pizzola punched out and dove on a fumble. The ‘Cats took over at midfield. Hill and the rest of the offense came out of the locker room strong and drove from midfield to the red zone in just five plays. RB Tyree Brawley then sprinted 22 yards, breaking several tackles to his first touchdown of the season. The Bobcats pulled within one score, 24-17.
The Bobcats’ defense delivered another gift to their offense on the ensuing possession. After forcing a 3rd and long at the midfield stripe, QB Malachi Jerome threw up a prayer to his receiver. DB Luke Gould stepped in front of the receiver and picked the ball off at the San Angelo Central 29-yard line. The Bobcats failed to capitalize on the interception and went three-and-out. Then, a punt off the side of Hill’s foot gave the Greywolves excellent field position at the San Angelo 40-yard line.
A defensive battle defined the end of the 3rd quarter and half of the 4th quarter. The Bobcats had to punt on two straight possessions, while the Greywolves failed to convert to 4th down attempts in San Angelo Central territory. With 6:43 remaining in the 4th quarter, the ‘Cats finally broke the stalemate. Hill completed two straight passes, one for 11 yards to WR Ben Imler and the next, a 42-yard heave to WR Jacob English, to set the Bobcats up in scoring position at the Shoemaker 27-yard line. Then, RB Aiden Barron took a carry straight up the gut 27 yards to the house. With 6:04 remaining in the contest, the Bobcats evened the score, 24-24.
Killeen Shoemaker answered right back on the next drive. The Greywolves methodically drove down the field on a 9-play 70-yard drive. A mixture of long runs, capped off with a 30-yard touchdown pass, put the Greywolves back up by seven, 31-24.
With two minutes to go in the game, crunch time had arrived. Starting at the San Angelo 34-yard line, Hill completed two quick passes to get the ball to midfield. He then called his own number and ran the ball to the Shoemaker 34-yard line. However, a sack put the Bobcats in a do-or-die situation facing a 3rd and 20 yards to go. Hill heaved the ball deep into the endzone for another connection with Jacob English, but the ball fell just out of his reach. Now staring down a 4th and forever, the Bobcats had one final chance to stay alive. Hill scrambled for more than half of the distance but, in the end, came up short. The Bobcats turned the ball over on downs with one minute to go.
Killeen Shoemaker kneeled out the final minute, and the Bobcats fell, 31-24.
The San Angelo Central Bobcats (0-1) host their first home game of the season when they take on the El Paso Montwood Rams next week, Sept. 2, at San Angelo Stadium, at 7 pm.
COVER1 Halftime Show
COVER1 After Games Show August 26, 2022