High School Football

Bishop Kelly football crushes Century, returns to state championship game

Bishop Kelly’s Ben Hruby stiff arms Century’s Adam Ping on his way to a big gain late in the second quarter Thursday in the 4A semifinals at Pocatello’s Holt Arena.
Bishop Kelly’s Ben Hruby stiff arms Century’s Adam Ping on his way to a big gain late in the second quarter Thursday in the 4A semifinals at Pocatello’s Holt Arena. Idaho State Journal

Bishop Kelly found little resistance in the 4A semifinals, throttling Century 56-20 on Thursday at Holt Arena to return to the state championship.

“I don’t know if there’s ever a perfect game,” Bishop Kelly coach Tim Brennan said. “But we played very well offensively, defensively and capitalized on mistakes they made.”

Bishop Kelly ran for 369 yards, recovered two pooched kickoffs and returned a punt for a touchdown on its way to a rout. The Knights (9-2) will play either Rigby or Sandpoint next week with a chance to win their third consecutive 4A state championship.

The championship will be in the Treasure Valley if Rigby wins. It’ll be at the Kibbie Dome in Moscow if Sandpoint wins. A time and date have not been set.

They’re everything we thought they’d be, and then some. This game, unfortunately, was over the minute they loaded their bus and the air brakes turned off.

Century coach Travis Hobson

The first quarter started about as perfectly as could be for Bishop Kelly. It couldn’t have been more miserable for the D-backs.

The Knights marched 80 yards on their first possession, scoring less than three minutes into the game on Luke Burley’s 23-yard run. Bishop Kelly recovered the ensuing pooch kick, and five plays later, Burley scored on a 9-yard scamper.

When Century (8-4) finally got the ball for the first time near the seven-minute mark, they went three-and-out and punted, only to have Travis Allumbaugh return it 70 yards to the house.

Bishop Kelly led 21-0 before Century picked up a first down.

“The stat of the night,” Hobson said. “In the first 16 minutes, we ran seven offensive plays. Down 21-0, you don’t come out of those holes against teams like this.”

The next 16 minutes weren’t much better.

Ivan Torrez capped a 15-play, 75-yard drive with a 9-yard TD run early in the second quarter. Century then fumbled a trick play, setting up Bryce Mers’ 38-yard TD run. And Bishop Kelly recovered another pooch kick before Ben Hruby broke free for a 32-yard TD run.

Bishop Kelly entered the half up 49-0.

“That’s the way it goes sometimes,” Hobson said. “We were outclassed top to bottom.”

Burley led BK with 90 rushing yards — all in the first half — on 12 carries.

Century entered the game averaging over 13 yards per kick return with two special teams touchdowns. Brennan simply wanted to avoid long returns with his pooch kicks, but two of them resulted in touchdowns.

“We knew we didn’t want to kick it deep to those guys because of their kickoff return,” Brennan said. “Our kids hustled like heck and got down there and made a couple plays.”

The D-backs gained 213 of their 346 offensive yards in the fourth quarter. Tristan Kayembe ran in touchdowns from 6 and 5 yards out, and Chris Hansen hit Dallin Blaser for a 37-yard score as time expired.

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