Football: Skyline falls to Bedford 27-6; next game with Tecumseh in doubt

After opening with an exciting win over rival Pioneer, the Skyline football team fell in their second outing of the season 27-6 against Bedford on Friday in an SEC Red showdown at Skyline.

The Kicking Mules were led by quarterback/defensive back Brady Henderson, who finished the game with three interceptions on defense and two touchdowns. Skyline falls to 1-1 after the victory over Pioneer last Friday.

“Any time we felt like we got something going, we had a penalty or made a mistake here or there,” said Skyline head coach Andrew Sorgatz. “We need to stay on schedule and keep the ball moving.

“The good news is the defense played really well. They played winning football. The offense didn’t get it done and that’s on us.”

Skyline is heading into a road matchup with Tecumseh next Friday. That game could be either postponed or cancelled after school officials in Tecumseh announced late this week that the high school will close and switch to fully remote learning with over 100 anticipated to quarantine after a positive case of COVID-19 was reported. Tecumseh’s football game with Dexter was cancelled on Friday night and an announcement regarding future athletic events is expected soon.

Both Bedford and Skyline started slow offensively but Henderson got the Mules on the scoreboard with a pick-six on Skyline senior quarterback Addison Taylor-Coquillard mid-way through the first quarter. The 46-yard return put Bedford up 7-0, which they would take into the second quarter.

The Eagles offense began showing signs of life when Taylor-Coquillard found Jordan Wilson for an 11-yard gain with 11:28 left until halftime, but they weren’t able to build on it. Bedford forced a punt and proceeded to go on a 5-minute drive, which ended with a Luke Carver six-yard TD run. Carver also had a 37-yard QB keeper earlier in the drive.

Skyline’s offense responded, though, as Taylor-Coquillard hit running back Marvin Cleveland for an eight-yard screen pass. A play later, Wilson caught a 45-yard pass to set up first and goal. Cleveland took a left inside handoff and sprinted up the middle into the endzone, cutting Bedford’s lead to 14-6. Skyline’s two-point attempt failed.

The Eagles got the ball back after Wilson picked off Carver with 2:30 remaining in the second quarter. Taylor-Coquillard hit Wilson on the ensuing fourth down for a 45-yard slant, getting Skyline down to the one-yard line. With 13 seconds left in the half, Henderson intercepted Taylor-Coquillard as he threw across his body, ending a potential game-tying drive.

Sorgatz explained what he saw from the sideline: “We had the receiver out wide, singled up, and inside leverage on the play. We just wanted to get the ball out and give our guy a chance. We didn’t prepare him enough for that situation, to get the ball out like we wanted. That was an absolute killer right before the half.”

Bedford led 14-6 at halftime as they were converting 40 percent of their third-down attempts and had four “big plays” (20+ yard gain). The Eagles converted 28.5 percent of their third downs in the first half.

Bedford’s momentum carried into the third quarter as an 11-yard run from Logan Hullibarger set up a 14-yard touchdown by Henderson to put Bedford up 21-6.

The Kicking Mules defense was suffocating in the second half and Henderson picked up his third and final interception in the third quarter. The only other score of the game came on a one-yard TD rush from Hullibarger with 2:17 left in the fourth quarter. Brendan Hammer added another interception for Bedford as time expired in a 27-6 win.