Hiss, BLHS pound Piper in 39-13 victory
Kansas City, Kan. Jesse Hiss was exhausted following Friday’s football season-opener at Piper.
Playing both ways in 90-degree heat will do that to you.
Sweat and black pieces of field turf dotted his eyes. He was worn out after Basehor-Linwood’s 39-13 victory — but it was a good form of fatigue.
He’d play both ways most of the game for the Bobcats, carrying the ball an unofficial 13 times and scoring a touchdown. He also came up with a big catch where he pulled the ball out of a defensive back’s hands to preserve a possession and gain yardage.
On defense, Hiss made numerous tackles as a linebacker.
“It was a lot of fun, but tiring,” Hiss said after the game. “Your adrenaline kind of takes over after a while.”
Both teams were amped up for the first game of the season, which had been voted as the Channel 9 High School Game of the Week. Sure, there were areas where the Bobcats might have been crisper, but there’s plenty of time to improve. The Bobcats simply were happy to get the win.
“There was a lot of excitement coming into this game, but we made some simple mistakes that cannot happen,” Hiss said.
If the first game is a culmination of the summer and a way to gauge where your team stands is the first game, the Bobcats passed the season’s first test with few wrong answers in a game that never was close.
The Bobcats dominated the first half and led 30-7 at intermission.
On the second drive of the game, Basehor-Linwood started with the ball on its 4-yard line.
Quarterback Colin Murphy took the ball and ran for a 41-yard gain. After a short run play, Murphy passed to tight end Ben Johnson for a 56-yard touchdown on a nice catch-and-run where Johnson broke a tackle on his way to the endzone.
Piper turned the ball over on its next possession when Caleb Hiss intercepted a pass from quarterback Tanner Eikenbary.
Basehor-Linwood put together an eight-play drive that ended with a 1-yard touchdown run by Hiss.
Piper’s next drive stalled with back-to-back sacks by Drew Potter and Riley Trowbridge. The linebackers were part of a defense that stifled Piper running backs throughout the night.
On the next drive, Murphy connected with three passes to his brother Ryan Murphy for 58 yards. Colin Murphy later rushed in for a touchdown and gave BLHS a 23-0 lead early in the second quarter.
Piper put together back-to-back strong drives in the second quarter. The first ended with a Basehor-Linwood defensive stand inside the red zone.
Piper took possession of the ball later in the quarter on a Ryan Murphy fumble. Piper scored on a 31-yard pass from Eikenbary to Jared Vogel. With the converted extra point, the score was 23-7.
The Bobcats took over at the 20-yard line and went to work on offense. A key play in drive occurred when Hiss went up for the ball with Piper defender and came down with the catch.
“Jesse did a good job of taking the ball away,” Hopkins said. “I am proud of that effort. We were able to score two plays later.”
The Bobcats went on to score on a 16-yard pass from Colin Murphy to Johnson.
Basehor-Linwood dominated early in the third quarter. The Bobcats ran a 10-play drive that culminated in a 19-yard pass from Colin Murphy to Potter. The extra point attempt was no good.
Piper turned the ball over on its next possession when Zac Smith intercepted the pass.
Garret Kahle capped the possession with a field goal.
With the score 39-7, Piper scored its last touchdown of the game when Colton Beebe rushed in for a 4-yard touchdown. Beebe, a freshman, was impressive running the ball. At 6-foot-2, and 215 pounds, he provided the Pirates with a change of pace back to compliment Paul Jones and Julian Cole, two slashing backs for the Pirates who gave BLHS coach Steve Hopkins fits in preparing for the game.
After the game, Hopkins told his players he was proud of them.
“I know you have been through a heck of a battle,” Hopkins told the team after the game. “You need a break.”
With that, he cancelled the team’s Saturday practice. “Enjoy it,” he said. “This could be the last one you have off for a while. I don’t want to give you another break until December.”
Depth favors the Bobcats
On a night when kickoff temperature was in the 90s, Basehor-Linwood had 25 more sophomores, juniors and seniors on its roster than Piper did. It made a difference in the amount of players in the game and the amount of depth the team had.
“It was huge in this kind of heat,” Hopkins said.
More of the team’s players were able to sub out with viable replacements.
Basehor-Linwood opens the home portion of the schedule next week against Bishop Ward. Last year’s game was postponed due to lightning on Friday night and had to be played on Saturday.