PERU — Bobby Morrow and the St. Bede Bruins made sure their Homecoming guests went away disappointed Saturday at the Academy.
Morrow scored three touchdowns as the Bruins rolled to a 35-18 win over the visiting Fulton Steamers. His 24-yard run with 1:59 remaining put on the finishing touches, leading to a loud roar from the SBA student section of “Yes, I believe we will win!”
“It’s Homecoming, so we definitely didn’t want to lose, and we wanted to get a push going in to the playoffs. We’re going to be 3A this year, so it’s going to be pretty tough. (We) want to get a good seed,” said Morrow, whose three touchdowns matched a career high.
The Homecoming win was extra special for St. Bede quarterback Taggert Venegas, who was celebrating his 17th birthday on the gridiron.
“I’m pretty excited to get the W,” he said. “With the alumni coming back, we wanted to go out there and play hard for them. They came to school, so you really want to show them what we’re all about.”
SBA coach John Bellino joked you always want to win Homecoming because “you’ll catch a lot of heat all year if you don’t.”
The Steamers (2-4) made things a little interesting with scoring drives late in the third quarter and another late in the fourth quarter. Bellino said it’s become an all too recurring theme the Bruins need to stop to make another playoff run.
“We’ve been talking to them about that all year. We either give up the big play and let a team right back in. We’re just not going to be able to afford to do that,” he said, adding his team showed a lot of character to stay in there and play hard.
The Green Machine was rolling in the first half. Morrow cashed in from two yards out less than four minutes into the game, and Austin Schwab added a three-yard score at the 4:49 mark.
Sam Halm had the scoring honors on a one-yard plunge with 8:22 to go in the second quarter, giving the Bruins a 21-0 halftime lead with Santiago Galatis’ third PAT.
“Didn’t matter which running back we had, we were all getting yards, inside and outside. Austin had a lot of carries, lot of tough running,” Morrow said.
“We were able to run the ball against them the whole game, and the line did excellent. They got out on their blocks and able to sustain them for quite some time, and Bobby and Shaw and Schwabie had some big runs,” Venegas said.
The Bruins racked up 317 yards on the ground on 50 carries, paced by Morrow (14-119) and Schwab (19-108). Bellino said the key was the offensive line as well as the blocking backs when they weren’t carrying the ball.
• Bruins briefs: St. Bede recognized the Class of 2002 for its 10th-year reunion, saluting their fallen classmate, Thomas Heitmann, who was tragically killed while co-piloting a U.S. Marine helicopter in training exercises in California a year ago. Bellino said it was a great tribute. “Tom played for us. He was a great kid. You hate to ever see that happen. They’re doing a lot for him. A lot of contributions coming in, and I understand they’re going to do some other things. I’m really happy to see that happening. … The Academy also honored former teacher John Comerouski, who passed away Sept. 22. He left his legacy at the Academy on Dec. 18, 1963, when he wrote the school’s loyalty song that is played after every Bruin touchdown ... Bob Schultz, who’s worked on the chain gang for Academy football years for 46 years, was one of seven people inducted into the SBA Hall of Fame Saturday morning.
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