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September 25, 2022

South Fremont sputters in second half, stymied by Snake River

After three straight wins, South Fremont fell 28-14 to 4-1 Snake River in St. Anthony.

The Cougars led for the entire first half and didn’t trail until the fourth quarter.

“It was a pretty good game through three quarters then they just kind of took it away from us,” said South Fremont head coach Chad Hill.

Jace Neville hit Bridger Poulsen for 23-yard gain then Easton Kerbs for a 17-yard gain to set up a 17-yard wide receiver sweep by Dallin Orme that he took in for a touchdown.

Snake River scored in the second quarter on a 31-yard Cole Gilbert pass to Connor Ranstrom but South blocked the PAT to maintain their lead.

In the first half, we came out and looked really good.

After a couple stalled drives, South Fremont head coach Chad Hill put Kaimen Peebles in at quarterback after he played well in relief of the injured Neville last week.

“Last week he came in down at Firth and kind of had the game-winning drive,” Hill said. “ We just felt that maybe there was something there that we were missing on offense because our offense has struggled the last couple weeks. We decided this week to kind of use a two-quarterback system. We were going to give Jace two drives and then Kaimen two drives and kind play them both out. They both kind of did some really good things tonight. We’ll kind of re-evaluate where we’re at and how we’re going to approach it next week. I think they both played pretty well.”

Hill said his team will continue to deploy a two-quarterback approach on some level moving forward.

“It’s something we’ll continue to use,” Hill said. “I don’t know if we’ll use them both equally or how we’ll do that. It’s just something we’re going to keep playing with and see what we can get out of it.”

Peebles produced right away with a 31-yard scramble up the middle and out to the edge followed by a 37-yard touchdown pass to Bridger Poulsen to retake the lead.

The Cougars shutout Snake River for most of the first half.

“I thought our defense was playing really well,” Hill said.

In the second half, South struggled to get anything going offensively and struggled to stop Snake River’s run.

“We just couldn’t stop their run game,” Hill said. “It was real similar to what happened to us against Fruitland. An almost identical scenario. I thought we looked good in the first half then second half we kept shooting ourselves in the foot with some dropped passes and some penalties. We just couldn’t get anything going offensively in the second half. Then their offense just started pounding on us and we couldn’t slow the run down.”

Snake River scored three touchdowns in the second half.

“They started getting to the edge of our defense,” Hill said. “We’d done a pretty good job of stuffing them up the middle. They try to run a lot of traps. We took that away then they started hitting us kind of off tackle to the outside and we just weren’t able to get enough guys in that running lane to slow them down in the second half. We tried to make a few adjustments but we just couldn’t get enough guys there.”

Snake River ran 263 yards compared to South Fremont’s 70 rushing yards.

“Their running back was really good,” Hill said. “I thought he looked pretty fresh and I think our guys got a little tired and a little runed down. We struggled rallying to the ball like we were in the first half.”

Neville went 11/28 for 135 yards passing and Peebles went 2/8 for 46 yards. Bridger Poulsen caught two passes for 60 yards and Dallin Orme caught 5 passes for 49 yards. 

Despite the final score, Hill was proud of the effort his team put in.

“(I’m proud of) just how relentless our kids play,” Hill said. “They just keep going. We were a little short-handed tonight. We had a couple of guys sick. Sawyer Hobbs was out with a sprained ankle. I thought our guys just play hard and have great effort and you can never fault them on how hard they play.”

South Fremont will play Marsh Valley next week in St. Anthony.

“I haven’t seen a lot on them but they’re usually a real run-heavy team and they like to run the ball and be pretty physical up front,” Hill said. “So, we’re going to have to get better stopping the run, which we struggled with tonight. We’re going to have to make some adjustments and be ready to stop the run next week.”

This article was originally published on Rexburg Standart Journal.

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