Report by Blake Smith
The Melbourne Bearkatz faced their toughest competition of the year Friday night, as they hosted the defending state champion Harding Academy Wildcats.
The Bearkatz got the ball first, and took over half the first quarter, systematically driving the ball down the field.
However, their luck ran out as the offense failed to convert on fourth down and turned the ball over.
The opportunities presented themselves over and over in the first half, but the Katz could not take advantage of any of them, while the Wildcats took advantage of good field position and a costly Bearkatz turnover to take a 14-0 lead into halftime.
The Wildcats got the ball to begin the second half and showed their offensive prowess, needing only 1:02 of game time to add to their lead.
That lead would increase to 28-0 before the Katz got on the board, but it was too little too late as Melbourne fell short by a final of 35-12.