Bowling Green cruises past Wildcats

MCHS loses to Bobcats for second straight year

By Theo Tate
Posted 9/16/21

From the opening play, the Bowling Green Bobcats were too much to handle for the Montgomery County Wildcats.

The Bobcats handed the Wildcats their first loss of the season after winning 51-7 in …

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Bowling Green cruises past Wildcats

MCHS loses to Bobcats for second straight year

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From the opening play, the Bowling Green Bobcats were too much to handle for the Montgomery County Wildcats.


The Bobcats handed the Wildcats their first loss of the season after winning 51-7 in the battle of undefeated teams on Sept. 10 at Jim Blacklock Field. MCHS dropped to 2-1 overall and 1-1 in Eastern Missouri Conference play and lost to Bowling Green for the second consecutive meeting.


“This was a tough loss,” MCHS coach John Klekamp said. “A lot of the guys are taking it tough. I feel like a lot of the work they put in was for nothing. It’s tough to have those conversations with kids. I had a conversation with my own son (Thomas). My own son works hard in the weight room. He’s like, ‘Dad, it’s all for nothing.’ It’s not all for nothing in one game. It’s tough for them right now.”


The Wildcats will look to bounce back on Sept. 17, when they travel to South Callaway to take on the Bulldogs. Last year, MCHS defeated South Callaway 41-20 in a home game. The Wildcats haven’t won at South Callaway since 2006.


“They have a good coaching staff there in place,” Klekamp said. “Their kids will work hard. They’re going to be coming at us just as hard as anybody. The question is will we bounce back?”


The Wildcats defeated Hermann 31-16 and Louisiana 41-13 in their first two games before losing to the Bobcats, who are the defending EMO champions.


“Even though playing against Bowling Green was not a great exclamation point to this first third of the season, it does put us in a position where we know a little bit more about ourselves in what we struggle with,” Klekamp said. “We’re going to have to get better at being a physical football team. We were really physical in the first two games. We tried to come out and be physical against Bowling Green, but we lost a little of our execution in doing that.”


Senior Keenan James provided the only points for the Wildcats against Bowling Green, scoring a 41-yard touchdown catch with 4:28 left in the fourth quarter for his second touchdown of the season.


“Sometimes when you get into those situations, we have to find some kind of success on either side of the ball in a game like that,” Klekamp said. “I’m sure people were like, ‘Why are you scoring there at the end?’ My opinion is you’re always trying to work and get better. We didn’t execute tonight, so we need to try and execute something before we leave the field tonight. We got one fourth down stop and we scored once. That’s not very positive, but we got something accomplished and that’s what we wanted to leave the field with tonight.”


Klekamp said he was pleased with the performance from junior Travis Hill in the losing cause. He played running back and safety and was a kick returner on special teams.


“He’s one of those kids who really stepped up into a role and tried to do the best for us,” Klekamp said. “He doesn’t quit. He has to play both ways with some of the injuries that we had.”


Charlie Bowen and Marcus Sparks scored two touchdowns apiece and Brandon Gamm, Gunner Bryant and Cooper Kiel each had a touchdown for Bowling Green, which improved to 3-0.


On the first play of the game, Gamm scored an 80-yard touchdown catch with just 20 seconds into the game to give the Bobcats a 7-0 lead. Bowling Green led 44-0 at halftime.


“We played a really good football team tonight,” Klekamp said. “We made them even better because we didn’t do a very good job executing on what we were supposed to do. On defense, we struggled on what we’re trying to accomplish defensively.”

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