SCHERTZ, TX — Opening the season with a rough outing against the Killeen Shoemaker Wolves last week, the San Angelo Central Bobcats looked to course-correct this week up against the Clemens Buffaloes on Oct. 2, 2020 at 7 p.m. in Schertz. This game did not go the way the Bobcats wanted, however, as penalties, turnovers, and a lack of offensive production sank their chances at the season’s first win. The Bobcats were shut out by a dominating Schertz Clemens squad, 35-0.
The Buffaloes kicked off the 1st quarter with a statement, driving the ball 64 yards for the opening touchdown. Behind an effective rushing attack from QB #2 Max Didomenico, the Buffaloes had little trouble marching their way down the field and into the end zone. Tempers flared near the goal line, and personal foul penalties for both teams foreshadowed much of the night’s sloppy play by San Angelo Central. Schertz Clemens scored first, 7-0.
Starting at their own 16-yard line, San Angelo Central had work to do trying to answer the opening score with one of their own. Behind the arm and legs of QB #8 Malachi Brown, the Bobcats drove the ball deep into Clemens territory. Facing a 3rd and 5, Brown completed a pass to a Bobcat receiver, but the Bobcat had the ball stripped away by a Buffaloes defender. Schertz Clemens recovered, killing the Bobcats’ first drive.
The Bobcat defense struggled to find an answer for Buffalo QB Max Didomenico following the turnover. Although the ‘Cats put the Buffaloes in multiple 3rd and long situations, Didomenico gashed the defense time and time again, driving Clemens down the field and into the endzone to put the Buffaloes up 14-0.
San Angelo Central still had no answer as the second quarter began. Another turnover ended a promising drive when Malachi Brown’s pass went in and out of the hands of a Bobcat receiver and into the hands of a Clemens defender at midfield. The Buffaloes took advantage of a short field to widen the gap over San Angelo Central when QB Didomenico launched a 47-yard bomb for a touchdown. Buffaloes extended their lead 21-0.
The Bobcats’ quarterback change midway through the second quarter saw Tyler Hill come into the game for the struggling offense. Hill, a sophomore, could not produce better results than Malachi Brown so the Bobcats offense remained stagnant. Three straight plays for little to no yardage led to the first Bobcat punt of the night.
Following the punt, Schertz Clemens executed another efficient drive for 48-yards capped off by 12-yard touchdown pass from QB Didomenico. Buffaloes started running away with it, 28-0
Down by four scores with three minutes left in the half, the Bobcats faced a 90-yard field, desperate to find something before the half. With QB Tyler Hill at the helm, the Bobcats had several positive plays on the ground but ended up going nowhere. Two different penalties against San Angelo Central negated any attempt to move the ball. Another punt had the Bobcats headed back into the locker room trailing 28-0 at the half.
Hoping for better results than in the first half, QB Malachi Brown returned to the game as the Bobcats quarterback. With the introduction of Tyler Hill during the 1st half, Head coach Brent Davis seemed to be using some of these non-district games to experiment with his personnel on offense. But for the second half, Brown was back under center. San Angelo Central’s first drive out of the locker room looked like several of the ineffective drives of the first half. After a three and out, the Bobcats punted again.
The San Angelo Central defense finally managed to get their first stop of the night following the punt. Aided by a penalty that backed up the Buffaloes, Central’s defensive line stepped up and stuffed the dynamic Buffaloes’ offense. However, on the next play after the punt, another Bobcats’ fumble erased the defense’s effort, and the Buffaloes took over again.
After another stop by the defense, Central finally put together a successful offensive drive. Following a big 28-yard run by RB #32 Darius Floyd and a 4th down reception by WR #4 Cayden Box, the Bobcats drove the ball down to the Buffaloes 15-yard line. Despite the success, however, penalties and dropped passes ultimately killed this drive. The Bobcats ended up turning the ball over on downs after a failed 4th down conversion.
Starting their next possession deep in their own territory, Clemens continued to pour it on. Set up by an explosive 69-yard run by RB Williams, #4 Andrew Edwards punched it in from a yard out, putting Clemens up 35-0. After the score and with a considerable lead, the Clemens’ backups came into the game. With two minutes to go in the 4th quarter, the Bobcats had one more opportunity to put points on the board, but muffed a punt, ending their scoring chances.
The game ended in a head-scratcher for the Bobcats, losing 35-0.
Schertz Clemens dominated every facet of this game tonight. After the first turnover by the Bobcats in the first quarter, the game grew further and further out of reach. When faced with an offense as talented as Schertz Clemens’, San Angelo Central could not afford to make so many mistakes. A lack of offensive production, simple mechanical errors, and a failure to capitalize on defensive takeaways sealed this game early. Central had over 100 yards in penalties this game.
No team can expect to be successful when they keep giving yardage away to the opposing team. The multiple turnovers by the offense throughout this game were also inexcusable. On more than one occasion, the wide receiving core completed the catch only to cough it up right after.
Luckily for the Bobcats, these mistakes will be easily fixed by this experienced coaching staff. Head Coach Brent Davis has been in these situations before. With some practice, the offense will be humming again just in time to start district games.
The Bobcat defense proved to be the only positive story of the night, only allowing seven points in the second half. Although the Buffaloes were already up big, the Bobcats never gave up. San Angelo Central put a lid on most of the big plays they allowed in the first half. This defensive unit is talented and will continue to improve as the season progresses.
While the passing game struggled tonight, the rushing attack by the Bobcats looked promising. Hard running by both quarterbacks and the running back core produced when they had the opportunity. A lopsided score forced Central to abandon the running game for most of the second half, but this rushing attack can be a formidable challenge in future games for opposing defenses, even if the games remain close.
The San Angelo Central Bobcats (0-2) look to improve on tonight’s performance next Friday, 10/09/2020, at 7 p.m., against A&M Consolidated, in College Station.