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Badgers Battle Past Muddy Conditions, Distractions to Top Mohave in Homecoming Game
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01 October 2016  

From gridiron to crowning, the Badgers bring a Homecoming win. 

PRESCOTT- Everything has been going wonderfully for the Prescott High School football team lately as the Badgers have now won three straight games after a well played win in-front of a packed homecoming crowd defeating the Mohave Thunderbirds 43-14 on Friday night. 

Even with the win, there were plenty of conditions before the game started where this contest could have ended in disappointment. 

First, the Prescott area received a heavy amount of rain throughout Friday before the game started. While the skies cleared for an enjoyable night, the field was left muddy and wet turning the team’s uniforms from their proud colors to a grey musky scheme. 

Additionally, it was homecoming week at the school which included a parade, bon-fire, dance and various former students coming to watch their alma matter play on the gridiron of old. 

Finally, the red-hot Badger squad was taking on a Mohave team who have yet to come out victorious in a contest this year. 

All of these conditions could have knocked the Badgers off their game on this Friday night-but it didn’t. The Badgers won the game in front of a packed crowd after a tiring week of festivities and a muddy field which left cleats soaking wet throughout the night. 

After the game, Prescott High School football head coach Michael Gilpin praised the team’s character and ability to move past these distractions and emerge from the game victorious. 

“There was a lot of reason for our boys to lay an egg tonight,” said Gilpin after the game. “But the character that these guys have, they weren’t going to let that happen.” 

While the Badgers were able to power through the soggy conditions on the field, the team still primarily used the run game highlighted by, homecoming king winner, David Pearce who continued his excellent campaign. 

“Not the most desirable, but it’s always fun in these conditions,” said Pearce after another good performance in the win. “Holding the ball was very hard, fumbling was very avid tonight, but we held together well for not practicing all week with it.” 

The conditions also tweaked the game plan as Gilpin realized the state of the field and subsequently the ball would not be ideal for passing.

“We’re a pretty diversified offense, you know we can throw the ball around and we got some good receivers,” said Gilpin. “But these muddy conditions, they really limited what we could do, but we’re a pretty good running team too so we just had to fall back on that and just kind of grind it out.”

Things couldn’t have started better for the Badgers on Friday as Pearce opened the game with a 75 plus yard rushing touchdown on the first play. Later in the quarter, the Badgers made it to the goal line but the ball would be fumbled and recovered by Mohave. However, the Badgers would jump back on the next play with a safety and proceed to run down the field for another score in the following drive. 

One of the biggest moments in this contest came with mere minutes left before halftime. Badgers quarterback Ryan Greene threw a ball which was picked off by the Thunderbirds’ Nikki Holloway who then fumbled the ball which was picked up by the Badgers. Essentially, the interception was beneficial for the Badgers as they gained considerable yards on the mistake which lead to another score a few plays later. The Badgers entered the locker room with a 23-0 advantage.

After the halftime festivities concluded, the Thunderbirds showed they weren’t going to lay down easily.  Mohave jumped back for a touchdown early in the half and was helped by Badger penalties, on a Thunderbird fourth-down punt, to gain another score cutting into the Prescott High School lead which stood at 23-14.

“We jumped off to a nice lead,” said Gilpin. “Hats off to Mohave because they came out in the second half, and we kind of thought the game was over, and Mohave kind of punched us in the mouth and said no we’re still here.”

Prescott High School would wake up again in the fourth quarter as the Badgers tacked on three touchdowns to ice the game and pick up a 43-14 victory sending members of the community, former and current students home happy.

“The whole team did well tonight, executed well,” said Pearce. “I enjoyed the game and it was a fun night for homecoming.” 

The Badgers riding a three game winning streak (4-2 overall and 2-0 in section), now face a tough road challenge against Mingus, the team that ended their playoff dreams last season.

“It’s not going to be hard to get us motivated next week,” said Gilpin. “We’re going to battle all week and go over there and expect a war and at the end of it, let’s hope we’re the ones standing.”

Kickoff for Prescott High School’s game against the Mingus Marauders (3-3 overall and 2-1 in section) is set for 7pm on Friday in Cottonwood. 

Photo Gallery: 

All Photos by Matt Hinshaw @ Hinshaw Photography.

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