Archive for Wednesday, October 25, 2006

Basehor-Linwood, Schaake battered by Bishop Ward

October 25, 2006

The only good thing about last Friday's football game for Basehor-Linwood High School was probably that sophomore Chandler Schaake emerged with his body and sense of humor intact.

Schaake played nearly every down in Bishop Ward's 55-6 thrashing of the Bobcats. With fellow running backs Bruce Tyner and Tyler Miles injured, he carried the ball a career-high 28 times. He also played nearly every defensive snap, often chasing around Ward's standout receiver, Chris Wing. And he had a busy day as a member of the BLHS kick return unit, with Ward kicking off nine times.

After the game, Schaake, his hair slicked with sweat and jersey stained with dirt and grass, admitted that he felt tired and beat up, but said he hoped his increased role would continue.

"Maybe I'll stop drinking so much pop," he added. "I've heard water is good for you."

With his increased carries Schaake did get results Friday. He became the first BLHS back to rush for 100 yards this season, getting 104 the hard way. His longest run was a 14-yard sprint around left end in the fourth quarter. He had six runs that went for only one yard, and absorbed a crushing hit on all six of them. But only one of his 28 carries was stopped for negative yardage.

His effort didn't go unnoticed by the BLHS faithful. As they made their way through the tunnel, many of them gave him a pat on the back when they passed.

"We were yelling for you," one woman said.

"Good things, I hope," Schaake deadpanned.

Indeed, there wasn't a lot of good things to yell about for the Bobcats' fans against Ward, but Schaake's rushing performance was one of them. He also scored his first touchdown of the season on a 4-yard plunge between the left guard and left tackle early in the fourth quarter. The play came after the Cyclones botched a punt, their only major mistake of the game.

"That was nice," Schaake said of the touchdown. "Coach usually calls a QB sneak (near the goal line)."

Early in the season BLHS coach Steve Hopkins said he didn't want his young players like Schaake to have to play both ways much. But his hand was forced Friday when Miles hurt his elbow in the first half and Tyner was already on the bench with a stitched-up hand.

"Our plan was not to have Chandler take every snap," Hopkins said. "But I thought he ran as hard in the fourth quarter as he did in the first. I do think it hurt his defense, though."

Schaake was part of a defensive unit that was uncharacteristically porous last Friday. After holding the Bobcats in some games singlehandedly this year, the defense let things get away early against Ward.

The Cyclones scored touchdowns on all four of their first half possessions, prompting Hopkins and his staff to stay out on the field at halftime and try and find some answers while the players were in the locker room.

"We were trying to evaluate personnel moves, trying to find anybody who could play better defense than we had in the first half," Hopkins said.

Hopkins said the staff found one difference-maker in junior linebacker Dan Franke, who had a strong second half. But it wasn't enough, as Ward scored touchdowns on their first three second-half possessions, as well.

After every Cyclones' touchdown the announcer played a clip of the Scorpions' hit song, "Rock You Like a Hurricane." By the end of Friday's game, even the most ardent fan of '80s rock would have been sick of it.

Hopkins certainly was, and the only saving grace for the Bobcats is that they can still advance to the playoffs by beating Piper this Thursday.

"To be honest I will use this tape to look at individual efforts and exchange tapes with Piper," Hopkins said. "Then I'll throw this tape in the trash."

For more on the game, season stats, and a look ahead to Piper, see page 9B.

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