Braves fall to Spring Hill, 35-21, on senior night
The Bonner Springs football team went into its final game of the season searching for meaning in a meaningless game.
Against Spring Hill on Thursday, a team who also had nothing to play for having already clinched the district, the Braves (3-6) ended their season with a 35-21 home loss. But they cared and played like it.
“Like I told them all week, you’re playing for your pride, you’re playing for yourself,” coach Lucas Aslin said. “That’s all you can play for. Some of those guys played their last football game.”
It was senior night at Bonner Springs and one took center stage on both sides of the ball. On defense, Logan Terrell returned an interception 60 yards for a touchdown as the first score of the game.
Despite the momentum shift, the Broncos (5-4) drove down and scored three unanswered touchdowns, quelling the early storm.
“That’s a tough team to get behind on because they just grind on you and they run the football,” Aslin said. “Every possession takes four or five minutes off the clock.”
With the Braves trailing, 21-7, junior quarterback Jordan Jackson found Terrell for a 76-yard catch-and-run touchdown right before halftime. Terrell had two catches for 83 yards on the night and the offensive and defensive touchdown.
But, like Aslin said, the Broncos consumed the clock in the second half. The Braves had the ball three times that ended in fumble, fumble, touchdown. For the game, they had 34 rushing yards compared to the Broncos’ 271.
It’s frustrating to end a season like this, losing six games in a row and making fundamental mistakes. There were bad snaps, errant passes, no running lanes and of course the fumbles. Aslin used this opportunity to give experience to players for the future.
Freshman quarterback Connor Byers made his debut in the second quarter and it didn’t go so well. In the first of his two plays, he took a walloping sack then had a two-yard run. But this is all part of the process.
After last week’s excruciating overtime loss to St. James Academy, it’s impossible to ignore all of the one-score losses Bonner Springs has had this season: the 10-point loss at De Soto, the six-point loss at Piper and the one-point loss to St. James. Those are season changers.
After the Braves’ 3-0 start, it doesn’t look as impressive now that the end of the season is here and those early opponents reveled themselves to not be very good. But Aslin thinks the mistakes this year are capable of setting the future right.
It’s going to take an offseason to gauge what types of players he’ll have, but at least most of them have now had varsity experience. They just need to figure out how it all fits together.
“We lost a lot of close games this year,” Aslin said. “If you have a little bit of team chemistry or a little bit of continuity, you make a little more plays here and there. You win three or four more games and turn the whole thing around.”