Century wears down South in quarterfinal win
BISMARCK — It might take a while for a half ton of beef to start moving. When it finally does, it becomes very hard to stop.
Bismarck Century’s offensive line wore down a Fargo South defense that was every bit as strong as Century’s in the first half and went on to beat the Bruins 23-7 Friday in the North Dakota Class 3A state football quarterfinals at MDU Resources Community Bowl.
Cade Garcia ran for 92 yards – 84 yards in the second half – and scored two touchdowns for the Patriots. Century has won five straight quarterfinal games since a 62-46 loss to Fargo South in 2014. South, on the other hand, hasn’t won a playoff game since that night.
The unbeaten Patriots (10-0) are set for a semifinal showdown against Mandan. The Bruins’ season ends at 6-4.
Grcia scored on runs of 13 yards and one yard in the second half.
“I thought the second half we made some nice adjustments so our running backs attacked their weak side a little more,” Century coach Ron Wingenbach said
The Bruins tried to stack the box and shoot gaps to offset a size disadvantage up front. It worked for most of two halves as they held Century to just 51 yards on the ground.
“We gave them all we could tonight, but they ran the ball and made some key plays,” South coach Tyler Kossel said. “We knew coming in they would be big and we would have to sell out against the run. We wanted to stop the run and we did that for the most part.”
In the first half, the Bruins threw pressure at the middle of the Patriots’ offense, forcing Feeney to scramble to the outside but with little effect. They held the Patriots to just 51 yards on 20 carries in the first half.
But the Patriots’ defense was equally effective, limiting Fargo South to only 17 yards on nine carries and 50 yards passing in the first two quarters.
The big difference was the wind, which Century used to its advantage to score 10 points in the first quarter. Both scoring drives were set up by poor punts into the wind.
The Patriots’ defense forced a three-and-out on South’s first possession, then marched 58 yards in just six plays to go up 7-0. Cade Feeney found Skyler Reidinger wide open over the middle for 28 yards and a score. Wade James kicked the PAT with 8:03 left in the quarter.
Another Patriots stopped followed by a 23-yard punt set Century up on the Bruins’ 41. That drive ended in a James’ 19-yard James field goal and a 10-0 lead with 1 second left in the quarter.
Century had a late drive down to the Bruins’ 16 in the closing seconds of the first half. But James’ 31-yard field goal attempt was pushed wide left by the wind.
Century upped its lead to 17-0 on Cade Garcia’s 13-yard run on its first possession of the second half, only this time the Bruins came right back. Peyton Kessel and Sibomana Enock drove the Bruins 72 yards into the wind for the score. Enock carried it in straight ahead from the 2-yard line with 4:49 left in the third quarter.
The Patriots scored for the first time against the wind with 11:58 left in the game on Garcia’s 1-yard run. The first 10 plays covering 66 yards were into the wind.
Fargo South 0 0 7 0— 7
Century 10 0 7 6— 23
BC: Reidinger 28 pass from Feeney (James kick)
BC: James 19 FG
BC: Garcia 13 run (James kick)
FS: Enock 2 run (Simpson kick
BC: Garcia 1 run (kick failed)