The Harrison County Thorobreds won their first game of the season Friday night and by doing so qualified for the Class 4A playoffs in District 7.
The Thorobreds traveled north to Pendleton County Friday and ran over the Pendleton County Wildcats 28-0 in an impressive second-half performance.
Both teams opened up slowly on offense as the Wildcats took the opening kick off and were three plays and out and the Breds returned the favor on their first possession.
The next possession for the home-standing Cats was more of the same as they picked up a total of three yards before punting again.
The Breds picked up three first downs on their next try and took the ball to the Pendleton County 18-yard line, but the drive stalled there.
Daniel Klapheke’s field goal attempt was blocked and the game remained scoreless.
Zach Royce intercepted his first of two interceptions on the night the first Wildcat play of the next series putting the Breds offense right back on the field.
The Harrison County offense continued to sputter though and Klapheke punted the ball back to the Wildcats on the opening play of the second period.
The second period started out like the first with the two teams struggling offensively.
Pendleton County finally picked up their first first down with seven minutes to play in the half but they then lost four yards in the next four plays and gave the ball up on downs on the Breds’ 32-yard line.
The Breds picked up two first downs on two runs by Robbie Stroub and an obvious pass interference on the Wildcats to put the ball on the Wildcats’42.
Stroub then dashed 32 yards to put the ball on the Wildcat 11 and Zack Mastin ran it in on the next play for the touchdown.
Klapheke’s point-after made the score 7-0 with almost four minutes to play in the half.
The Wildcats were again impotent on offense but did punt the ball all the way to the Harrison County 19 where the Breds took over.
Stroub took the first snap and faked to Mastin and then carried to the Pendleton County 10 on a 71-yard run.
A false-start penalty put the ball back on the 15 and after an incomplete pass, Pendleton County intercepted a Stroub pass intended for Jovon Williams in the end zone to end the threat.
The Wildcats picked up three first downs, but the Harrison County defense stiffened and the half ended with the 7-0 score.
The half time motivational speech by Coach Jim Carr ended with the first-year coach instructing the offense to take the kick off and “drive the ball down the field like they did against Covington Catholic on the first possession of that game.”
“Drive the ball” the Breds did as they went on a 10-play, 80-yard drive that ended with Mastin running the ball in from three yards out for his second touchdown of the night.
Klapheke’s kick made it 14-0 and the Breds were in business.
The drive took more than six minutes off the clock to open the second half.
Harrison County wasn’t finished with the long drives.
After Pendleton County ran the kick off back to their 47, the Wildcats looked like they may have had some “inspiration” of their own at the half. But after one incomplete pass and a short gain on another throw, the Wildcat quarterback threw the ball to Stroub and the sophomore ran it back to the Pendleton County 48-yard line.
The Breds then marched the ball down the field on a nine-play drive which took another four and one half minutes off the clock.
This drive ended with Stroub running the ball into the end zone from 10 yards out making the score 21-0 after the Klapheke kick.
Pendleton County was assessed a 15-yard unsportsmanlike penalty on the extra point try and the kick off placed them deep in their own territory.
To the Wildcats credit, they picked up a tough first down before the quarter ended with them kicking the ball back to Harrison County.
Royce’s second interception came on the next Pendleton County drive giving Harrison County the ball on the Wildcats’ own 5-yard line. Brandon Morris rushed past the Wildcats on the next play for the score and the Klapheke kick was good again for the final 28-0 verdict.
The Breds gained 354 yards on the night, only 45 through the air, and held the Wildcats to 75 total yards.
Stroub was the leading rusher with 152 yards in 17 carries, followed closely by Mastin who had 141 yards on 20 carries.
Harrison County threw the ball only 10 times completing three with Williams catching two and Alex Kinsey the other.
Quarterback Austin Pyles was the leading ground gainer for Pendleton County with 34 yards in 16 carries.
The loss left the Wildcats at 1-8 with a home game remaining with Bracken County while the Breds are also 1-8 with a Senior Night battle with Woodford County (3-6) this Friday at the Athletic Complex.