In a pre-playoff game with Clearfield High, the Bear River football team showed a glimpse of its playoff mindset in a 14-6 victory on Wednesday, Oct. 16, at BRHS. The Bears played in a fall-break, special Wednesday game to allow athletes a chance to enjoy their time off.
The Clearfield Falcons are a reeling 6A team, trying to figure out their identity, heading into the state playoffs. With the new RPI system, games are weighted on strength of schedule, opponent, and victories and losses.
With last week’s win, the Bears will now host a first-round playoff game on Friday, Oct. 25, against the Ben Lomond Scots. Kickoff is set for 7 p.m. A Bear River victory would send the Bears to St. George for a match up with the Pine View Panthers. Pine View received a first round playoff bye and will have an off week to get ready for the game.
Against Clearfield, the Bear River Bears used a sprinkling of offense and a lot of defense to dial up a winning recipe. The Bears were resting and healing many varsity starters and were able to use a fresh mix of players to get the victory.
In the first quarter, senior Bear River quarterback Ren Fonnesbeck hooked up with speedster Klayson Roberts on a go-route. Roberts had two steps on his defender and raced into the end zone untouched. The touchdown covered 53-yards and Porter Tackett’s PAT gave the Bears a 7-0 lead.
The opportunistic defense used a “next man up” mentality to press the Falcons and create havoc. The Bears’ trifecta of Braxton “Weasel” Christensen, Justice “Shak” Dworshak and Logan Frazer made life difficult for the Clearfield quarterback. The Falcons had some decent drives, but had to settle for a field goal in the second quarter.
The Bears put together a second quarter scoring drive that ended in a touchdown. A scrambling Fonnesbeck, connected with sophomore wideout Alec Callister, for a 23-yard touchdown. The catch was the first varsity catch of Callister’s season, and gave the Bears a 14-3 lead at halftime.
In the second half the Bears stuck to the same recipe, letting their defense dictate the game. The plan worked to perfection, as Bear River head Coach Chris Wise was conservative enough to keep it tight, but opened up the offense at times. The defense stayed locked-in, forcing the Falcon offense into punting situations and stopping them on consecutive fourth down series.
In the fourth quarter, Clearfield drove into the Bears’ red zone, but settled for a 27-yard field goal to conclude the scoring for both teams. When the game ended, the Bears were 14-6 victors.