PLAINVIEW, Texas – The Bacone Warriors managed to survive in their conference opener as they narrowly escaped Wayland Baptist 16-9 Saturday afternoon, Oct. 12.
Bacone’s Alex Wilson came up with game’s first turnover when he intercepted Pioneer quarterback Joshua Houghtaling at the Wayland Baptist 43-yard line.
The Warriors managed to drive it down to the Wayland Baptist 11-yard line when Kyle Kuban was intercepted on a second-down pass attempt by Nathaniel Sisler.
Neither squad threatened until Kuban hit Larry Stokes for a 61-yard touchdown; the ensuing extra point was blocked as the Warriors led 6-0 at the 1:23 mark in the first quarter.
After trading punts Bacone’s Karl Birkenfield led the Warriors on a 14-play, 68-yard drive that culminated in him scoring on a one-yard quarterback sneak to put Bacone ahead 13-0 at halftime.
The Pioneers answered the touchdown with a score of their own in the third quarter when Kendall Roberson rumbled his way for a 12-yard touchdown to have Wayland Baptist trail only 13-7 with 9:53 remaining in third quarter.
Neither offense was able to put their foot on gas over the next four possessions and it ended up favoring the Pioneers as the Warriors gave up a safety on a failed punt attempt to trim Bacone’s lead to only 13-9 with 13:26 remaining.
Birkenfield led the Warriors on a late scoring drive that ended with Nick Cannon nailing a 37-yard field goal to put Bacone in front 16-9 with 1:28 to go.
The Pioneers reached the Bacone 47-yard line, facing a third-and-one but they were unable to convert on an incomplete pass; facing a fourth down attempt, Houghtaling was sacked at the 50-yard line by Andre Clark and Deantre Harlan to seal the win for Bacone.
Birkenfield finished the game 11-for-18 for 121 yards; Kuban went six-for-13 with 108 yards, one touchdown and an interception.
Aron McCoy anchored the running game with 78 yards on 21 carries; Reinaldo Reyes led all receivers with nine catches for 129 yards.
Bacone (4-2, 1-0) hosts Panhandle State next Saturday, Oct. 19 at 2 p.m. at the Indian Bowl.