by A.C. Hall
Starting the season off on the right note can go a long way towards a beautiful year, but that didn’t happen for the Brewer Bears. Going up against Arlington Heights last week on the season opener, Brewer struggled to get much going on either side of the ball as the game slowly but surely spiraled out of control.
After opening up a 7 – 0 lead early on with a 35 yard pass play, Brewer than found their offense stuck in neutral and their defense struggling to slow down the running onslaught of Arlington Heights. The Yellowjackets dual rushing threat of quarterback Deion Hair-Griffin and running back Kevin Bowie took over the game. They put together three straight touchdowns to take a 21 – 7 lead.
Two of Brewer’s rushers helped the offense answer with a score of their own. Tre Johnson and Jameson Carson each had impressive runs in a scoring drive that made it Arlington Heights 21, Brewer 14 at halftime.
Unfortunately for the Bears, the entire second half was one long highlight reel for Hair-Griffin and Bowie. The Heights rushers continually found holes and got deep gains as the Brewer defense never found an answer. Meanwhile, nothing seemed to work for the Bears as they tried several different running backs and even attempted several pass plays as they tried to jump start their stalled offense.
The final score in the contest was Arlington Heights 48, Brewer 14. Six different Bears ran the ball in the game, with Johnson and Jarrett Morse the only two who ran for over fifty yards. Quarterback Brian Kueck completed 7 of 14 pass attempts for 73 yards, 1 touchdown, and 1 interception.
The lack of success on offense is worrisome, as Brewer usually finds great success running the ball against pre-district opponents. Even more troublesome is the 460 yards rushing the Brewer defense gave up as they simply had no answer for the excellent runners they were up against. It’s only one game, but if the Bears are hoping to have a playoff season they’ll need to find a way to be better on both sides of the ball moving forward.
This friday night is the first home game of the season as Brewer welcomes Western Hills to the friendly confines of Brewer Stadium. Kickoff is at 7:00 pm.