Final Run

Louise sophomore running back Tayveon Kimble bounces off a Bruni tackler Friday night in Taft. For more photos from the game. 

The Louise Hornets will have to wait another year to try their luck at making it past the first round, falling to the Bruni Badgers 32-16 Friday night in Taft.

The Hornets (6-5) played Bruni tight for three quarters, trailing by three points heading into the fourth. Two late touchdowns by the Badgers put the score out of reach and gave them the bi-district win.

“(I am so proud of the kids. I just wish we would have taken care of it. We were there. We had a great opportunity, just a few breakdowns,” Louise head coach Joe Bill said.

The Badgers run game and their speed gave the Hornets problems. Louise had several big plays for a loss, but the Badgers would come back and break a long run.

Coming out of the locker room trailing four points, the Hornets went down the field to score and take their only lead of the game. Facing a fourth and one, four plays into the drive, senior running back Blayke Yeager broke through for a 30-yard run up the middle. A horse collar penalty on Bruni gave Louise the ball first and goal on the  10-yard line. Sophomore running back Tayveon Kimble scored on the first play, beating the Badgers to the far sideline.

Bruni wasted no time retaking the lead on their next possession. After two quick first downs, Louise held Bruni to no yards on their next two plays. 

On third and 10, Louise held them to a five-yard run. However, rather than punt and give the ball back to Louise, they went for it.

The Badgers quarterback beat the defense to the outside, went upfield for a 40-yard touchdown run putting them ahead 19-16.

The Hornets’ offense stalled, punting on their next two possessions. 

Louise’s defense forced a Bruni turnover on downs in between the drives, but late in the fourth, they ran out of gas and the Badgers tagged them for two touchdowns in the final seven minutes.

Late in the game, Louise lost sophomore wide receiver/defensive back Holden Watson to an injury, forcing them to rely on junior varsity players.

“We just had some missed communication and we didn’t execute like we are capable of,” Bill said. “Their big guys were tough inside and were able to handle us a little bit. We hurt ourselves a little bit with penalties in crucial times.”

Seniors for the Hornets were Yeager, Chris Vasquez, Daniel Gaona III, D’adrian Espitia and Josh Gomez.

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