SEDGWICK — The Sedgwick Cardinal football team couldn’t match the offensive output of the Beloit Trojans, falling 54-24 Friday in the Class 3A state playoff quarterfinals in Sedgwick. “We knew coming in, they would be one of the best teams in the state,” Sedgwick coach Jeff Werner said. “They showed it tonight. We gave them a fight early. We played four quarters against them. We talked about that in the locker room tonight, and we did it.” Beloit, 12-0, was led by Bowe Behymer with 276 yards rushing and two touchdowns. Tanner Niemczyk had 114 yards rushing and three touchdowns. Payton Vetter passed for 105 yards and a touchdown. Vetter also added a rushing touchdown. Sedgwick was led by Logan Thompson with 259 yards passing and two touchdowns. Thompson also rushed for two touchdowns. Dalton Brandt rushed for 137 yards. “They make you run a lot of plays,” Werner said. “They put a lot of pressure on you. We made some plays, but we weren’t able to string enough of those plays together to stay in the ballgame longer.” The Cardinals failed to convert on four two-point conversion attempts. “Playing these guys in a two-yard game is pretty hard,” Werner said. “They are big and strong guys. We’re in the spread, We’re not always able to convert on teams that powerful.” The Sedgwick defense held on Beloit’s first possession, aided by an offensive pass interference play in the redzone. Beloit converted on fourth down twice. Beloit finally scored on a five-yard Niemczyk run, but missed the two-point conversion. Sedgwick came back with 65-yard drive of its own, scoring on a 22-yard Thompson run. Sedgwick also missed the two-point conversion. The Trojans scored a pair of touchdowns early in the second quarter, along with a pair of two-point conversions. Sedgwick came back with a score on a pass from Thompson to Drake Standefer for a 47-yard touchdown play. Thompson hit Dalyn Anderson for a pair of long passes in the drive. Sedgwick missed the two-point conversion run. A long Beloit kickoff return set up a 25-yard run for Niemczyk with 10.3 seconds left in the half. Niemczyk ran in the two-point conversion. Sedgwick made a long drive to start the third quarter that ended on downs at the Beloit 15. Two plays later, Behymer ran the ball in from 80 yards. Sedgwick came right back with a drive that ended on a 20-yard pass from Thompson to Brandt. Beloit answered with a long scoring drive. “We talked at halftime that if we move the ball, go down and score, we’re back in the game.” Werner said. “We just weren’t able to punch it in. On fourth down, we just didn’t run a play correctly the way we wanted it, and we lost yards on it. That was a big turning point.” Sedgwick scored its final touchdown on a four-yard Thompson run. Beloit’s final scored came on an 14-yard Behymer run with 4:33 in regulation. The Cardinals made one last run into Beloit territory, but the drive ended on an interception. The Trojans ran off the remaining time. Sedgwick loses 13 seniors. “We took another step in the program,” Werner said. “That’s all you can ask. We asked the seniors to take the team to another level, and they did that this year. We had a sophomore quarterback go down early with a knee injury. We’re excited to have him back. We have a very good junior class. We’re not done making noise in 3A football. We’ll get back in the weight room and try to make another run at it next year.”
Beloit 6 24 8 16 —54 Sedgwick 6 6 6 6 —24 Scoring 1q. B Niemczyk 5-yd. run (pass failed) 2:46 1q. S Thompson 22-yd. run (pass failed) 33.6 2q. B Niemczyk 30-yd. run (Niemczyk run) 11:51 2q. B Vetter 30-yd. run (Niemczyk run) 7:20 2q. S Standefer 47-yd. pass from Thompson (run failed) 47.3 2q. B Niemczyk 25-yd. run (Niemczyk run) 10.3 3q. B Behymer 80-yd. run (pass failed) 6:46 3q. S Brandt 24-yd. pass from Thompson (run failed) 4:54 4q. B Krone 11-yd. pass from Vetter (Jackson pass from Vetter) 10:42 4q. S Thomson 3-yd. run (pass failed) 7:25 4q. B Behymer 14-yd. run (Niemczyk run) 4:33 Individual stats RUSHING — Beloit: Behymer 27-276, Niemczyk 13-114, Vetter 5-47, Krone 6-27. Sedgwick: Brandt 15-137, Thompson 12-61. PASSING — Beloit: Vetter 7-11-0, 105 yards. Sedgwick: Thompson 15-30-1, 259 yards. RECEIVING — Beloit: Budke 1-47, Niemczyk 2-38, Krone 2-17. Sedgwick: Standefer 3-63, Anderson 2-62, Foster 2-25, Brandt 3-22, Chandler 2-22, Liby 1-5. Missed field goals — none.