Monday, December 18th, 2017

Broncos win Area Title

By Sandy Anderberg

Six turnovers plagued the Broncos in their Area match up with Bovina last Friday in Canyon at Kimbrough Memorial Stadium, but they were able to put them behind them and outlast the Mustangs to get the 26-20 win.

The victory put the Broncos one step closer to the state game as they will take on Hamlin Friday night, December 1, at Wolfforth Frenship beginning at 7:00 pm.

The Broncos take the field before last week’s Area Championship game in Canyon against Bovina. Clarendon plays Hamlin this Friday, December 1, at Frenship for the regional title. Enterprise Photo / Roger Estlack

The first half of play proved to be somewhat disastrous for the Broncos as they had three turnovers and could not find the end zone. Bovina was able to put 20 points on the board while holding the Broncos scoreless until Daquawne Oliver found the end zone from one yard out with thirty seconds left in the half.

“I thought our kids played their tails off Friday afternoon,” first year head coach Clint Conkin said. “We got behind early at 20-0 on some turnovers on our part, but these guys never quit fighting. We finally settled in right before half cutting into the lead 20-6.”

The second half was night and day for the Broncos as they flipped the switch to turn on their offense to put points on the board and played solid defense to hold the Mustangs scoreless. Early in the third quarter, quarterback Noab Elam hit Andy Davis from 13 yards out to give the Broncos their second touchdown in the game. Oliver scrambled for the two-point bonus. Elam was able to find Dalton Benson for an 11-yard pass and score early in the fourth quarter for the Broncos’ third TD.

“We came out in the second half and played like I knew we could,” Conkin said. “Our defense has played great all season, and they played awesome Friday afternoon. We had guys flying around making tackles.”

According to Conkin, Colt Wood and Preston Elam both had big interceptions in the game on the defensive side, and Wood had a fumble recovery.

“Our defense played solid all afternoon,” Conkin said. “I am very proud of these guys.”
The Bronco defense never gave up in the final quarter of play. After Ryan McCleskey scored the last Bronco touchdown on a 30-yard run, the Mustangs got the ball back about the five-minute mark.

They had some success driving the ball, but when it mattered most, the Bronco defense got busy. A penalty put Bovina on our five-yard line, but they were penalized and Davis got a big quarterback sack. That put them back on the 24-yard line where the Broncos held and got the ball back with enough time to earn a first down before the buzzer.

The Broncos rushed for 250 yards to only three for Bovina. The Broncos passed for 105 yards to give them 355 total yards to 222 for the Mustangs. Clarendon posted 17 first downs to 12 for Bovina but committed six turnovers to only three for their opponent.

Offensively, Oliver had 26 carries for 134 total yards and one score and one conversion. McCleskey had 14 carries for 82 yards and on TD. Benson had two carries for 14 yards, and Damarjae Cortez had five carries for three yards. Preston Elam had three carries for five yards, and Noab Elam carried twice for 12 yards. N. Elam was 10 of 18 passing for 105 yards and two touchdowns. P. Elam caught two passes for 31 yards, and Nathan

Shadle caught one for nine yards. Benson had two catches for 22 yards and one TD, and Wood had two catches for 25 yards.

“I am very proud of these guys,” Conkin said. “They are a fun team to coach.”

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