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Harvey: Defense key for KCHS to shut down Adams Central, remain undefeated
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Harvey: Defense key for KCHS to shut down Adams Central, remain undefeated

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KEARNEY — What kept the last unbeaten Kearney Catholic football team from competing in the state final? You might want to ask the boys in red, white and blue.

Whenever KCHS and Adams Central meet, it’s bound to include fireworks.

They went unbeaten that year until they ran into Adams Central in the state quarterfinals.

This Friday will not be any different as the Stars once again put their undefeated streak on the line against Adams Central.

Last season, the Stars were successful against the Patriots during the regular season. However, the Stars came up short in the Class C semifinals. KCHS coach Rashawn Harvey reflected on the Stars’ battles with Adams Central, in which he believed they didn’t play too well on the defensive side of the ball.

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“We know we have to be prepared defensively well and be disciplined defensively,” Harvey said. “We played a lot of those games undisciplined last year in that state final game. Offensively, we have to establish the run game and take advantage of opportunities. If there are turnovers, we must be able to ... put the ball in the end zone. Last year we didn’t put the ball in the end zone.”

The Stars are coming off a physical 9-6 victory over Broken Bow last Thursday, where their offense had its worst day but depended on their defense and special teams to pick up the victory. Those kind of marquee wins could benefit the Stars in the long haul whenever they are playing against physical running teams.

“It’s great to see that if we’re having an off night offensively, that our defense is going to step up,” Harvey said. “That our special team is going to step up. It’s just an extra level of knowing that we can play with any smash-mouth team defensively. Also, we can get ourselves in a position with special teams to win a game.”

Adams Central is 4-2 on the season, coming off a 59-20 victory over Central City last week and 2-0 in district play. The Patriots are a spread-team offense like KCHS.

However, after the departure of their quarterback Cameron Foster, the Patriots focused more on their run attack. The Patriots have a total of 1,458 rushing yards and 20 touchdowns.

A chunk full of those yards came from their 1-2 punch, Hyatt Collins (732 yards, nine touchdowns) and Nick Conant (448 yards, nine touchdowns) in the backfield.

“They are a team just like us, but we want to establish the run game, and they are probably going to be aggressive in certain aspects,” Harvey said. “They are going to look at game film from both games last year, and obviously, they had a great game plan going to game two of our battles.”

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