Catholic High hangs on to advance past Rummel and onto semifinal

The No. 4 Catholic High Bears advanced to the semifinals after a 42-35 win against No. 5 Rummel on Friday. Rummel running back Logan Diggs posted 228 yards and three touchdowns on 31 carries while catching a pair of passes for 30 yards and adding another touchdown. The Bears were anchored by the rushing duo of George Hart and Corey Singleton, who combined for 301 yards on 21 carries and three touchdowns.

Catholic quarterback Daniel Beadle completed 5-of-6 passes for 57 yards and a crucial touchdown to Daniel Harden to give the Bears their first lead of the game late in the fourth quarter. Raiders quarterback Kyle Wickersham completed 7-of-16 passes for 64 yards and a touchdown.

How it was won

Rummel didn’t hide its strategy early by any means, feeding Diggs on 13 of the Raiders’ 14 first half carries. After stuffing the Bears’ multifaceted running game on the opening drive, the Raiders marched 81 yards on their opening salvo, capped off by a 7-yard sweep to the left corner of the endzone by Diggs.

Not to be outdone, Bears running back George Hart took command of the offense as the wildcat quarterback and ignited Catholic’s offense with a 46-yard run into Rummel’s redzone before punching in the Bears’ first touchdown from three yards out.

While Diggs dominated the Raiders’ touches, Hart was the hottest hand in the Bears’ hit-or-miss rushing attack. Five other Catholic players registered a carry in the first half, but no one came close to matching Hart’s six carries for 88 yards and score.

Player of the game

George Hart, running back, Catholic High

The honor could have easily gone to Diggs, or even Hart’s backfield battery mate Singleton (10 carries, 126 yards and a touchdown), but the Bears advanced to the semifinals Friday night, thanks in no small to part Hart’s work as the wildcat and option quarterback. It was Hart’s handoffs on the end-around that allowed wide receiver Tre’ Benson to find paydirt on two of his three carries, and it was Hart that almost single-handedly revitalized the Bears offense after a slow start in the first .

Hart’s 11-175-2 TD line may not have led the statsheet, but his multifaceted contributions on offense were key in a close in a close contest.

Notable

Diggs had 169 of his 228 rushing yards in the first half. The Notre Dame-commit left the game midway through the third quarter with an apparent leg injury. He returned for the following drive, but was noticeably sluggish after the injury.

Neither defense recorded a sack in the game until Rummel’s last drive in the fourth quarter, when Wickersham stepped up in a collapsing pocket only to be brought down from behind by Bears defensive end Blake Mathis.

Friday’s game was the seventh matchup between the two teams, and was by far the highest scoring affair in the game’s history: The two teams combined for 59 points in their 2015 Division I championship bout, a 31-28 win for Catholic. The teams combined for 77 Friday.

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