WAHOO – The seventh-ranked Bishop Neumann Cavaliers lost a heartbreaker 34-33 on Friday night at Wayne Reeves Field at the hands of rival Columbus Scotus.
The game wasn’t decided until the final seconds, but early in the second quarter the game was close to turning into a rout.
Senior quarterback Tyler Palmer and the Shamrock offense appeared unstoppable early. The Shamrocks led 13-0 and had the ball first-and-goal at the Cavalier 1-yard line early in the second quarter.
The Cavalier defense made a stand and got a fumble recovery from 270-pound senior Dalton Bartek along the Cavalier sideline, leading to the first Cavalier score.
Senior running back David Lilly closed the gap to 13-7 when he broke free for a 13-yard scoring run.
Another Cavalier running back gave the Cavaliers their first lead of the game with 2:14 left in the first half.
Junior Spencer Weise made four defenders miss and scored on an electrifying 72-yard scoring run. Junior Boston Pentico added the extra point and Neumann led 14-13.
Palmer and the Shamrocks executed the two-minute offense expertly and the visitors were able to go into the locker room with a 20-14 lead after Palmer connected with senior receiver Dalton Borchers on a 17-yard scoring pass with 21 seconds left before halftime. It was Palmer’s third touchdown of the first half (two rushing, one passing).
Scotus got the ball first in the third quarter and it took the Shamrocks just over three minutes to extend the lead. Palmer found Levi Robertson on a 27-yard scoring pass with 8:57 remaining in the third quarter. Neumann found themselves down 27-14.
The Cavaliers turned to Lilly as they have done all season and he didn’t disappoint.
He scored on a 2-yard touchdown run with 2:03 left in the third quarter and then with backup quarterback Kolten Cada in the game for a cramping Taylen Pospisil, Lilly caught a short pass in the flat and broke four tackles on his way to scoring an 11-yard touchdown. The PAT was blocked and the game remained tied at 27 with 9:04 remaining in the game.
The Shamrocks got a 15-yard touchdown run from senior Eric Mustard with 5:21 left in the game. The PAT was good and Neumann was down again, this time by sev
Neumann rallied again, this time behind Pospisil. The senior quarterback had a long run and then evened the score when he found senior receiver Jarrett Kmiecik on an 18-yard scoring pass with 3:32 left in the game. The Cavaliers lined up to kick, but instead attempted to take the lead on a rollout pass, but Cada’s pass fell incomplete in the endzone. The Rocks led 34-33.
Scotus bled the clock and forced Neumann to use all of their timeouts on defense before going out on downs at the Cavalier 44-yard line with 42 seconds remaining.
Neumann advanced the ball inside the Rock 30-yard line, but the clock ran out on the comeback attempt.
Neumann rushed for 306 yards on 39 carries and Pospisil and Cada combined to finish 6-of-12 for 76 yards and two scores.
Lilly rushed for 108 yards on 18 carries and scored twice giving him 731 yards rushing and 17 TD’s in six games.
Wiese added 88 yards and score before leaving the game with cramps in the third quarter.
Senior Trey Miller caught three balls for 31 yards.
Lilly finished with a team-best 13 tackles. Kmiecik added 12 more.
Junior Dawson Sabatka intercepted his third pass of the season in the third quarter.