AURORA – Kearney Catholic fell behind in the first quarter against Aurora and could not recover.
The Class C-1 No. 4-rated Huskies used a strong rushing game and a stingy defense to top the Stars 45-10.
"I think in the second quarter last week (against Adams Central) we started to find an identity and we found some things that we could be good at," Aurora coach Kyle Peterson said. "We played with energy. We played with physicality. We flew to the football defensively. We forced turnovers."
KCHS (1-1) cruised past Broken Bow in its opener, but this time the Stars found themselves staring at a 22-0 deficit before the end of the first quarter.
Aurora (1-1) used a pair of turnovers and a special teams miscue by KCHS to start three straight possessions in Stars’ territory. All three ended with touchdown runs within a span of 3:57.
On the opening possession, Kearney Catholic quarterback Heinrich Haarberg’s arm was hit as he released a pass, which led to the ball fluttering into the middle of the field with Aurora’s Kolby Wessels there to make an easy interception.
The Huskies converted a fourth down and two third downs to go 45 yards with Kaleb Moural going in from a yard out to make it 7-0 with 6:26 left in the quarter.
The Stars couldn’t get a punt off on its second possession after a bobbled snap, and one play later Moural broke out of a pack for a 24-yard touchdown. KCHS lost a fumble two plays later at its 26-yard line, and this time Aurora quarterback Trevor Dvorak scored on a 3-yard run. With the 2-point conversion, the Huskies led 22-0 with 2:29 to go in the first period.
The Stars got on the scoreboard on a 29-yard field goal by Spencer Hogeland 52 seconds into the second quarter, but Aurora quickly answered.
Aurora’s defense held the Stars in check all game to the tune of six first downs and 123 yards of total offense. Haarberg was 8-for-18 for 81 yards with a 29-yard touchdown to Austin Christner in the third quarter.
Aurora 45, KCHS 10
KCHS (1-1) 0 3 7 0—10
Aurora (1-1) 22 16 7 0—45
A—Kaleb Moural 1 run (Jameson Herzberg kick), 6:26.
A—Moural 24 run (Herzberg kick), 4:41.
A—Trevor Dvorak 3 run (Herzberg pass from Dvorak), 2:29.
KC—Spencer Hogeland 29 field goal, 11:08.
A—Moural 4 run (Nate Boerkircher pass from Dvorak), 8:08.
A—Herzberg 30 pass from Dvorak (kick failed), 4:58.
A—Dvorak 39 run (Herzberg kick), 9:09.
KC—Austin Christner 29 pass from Heinrich Haarberg (Hogeland kick), 6:33.
RUSHING—KC: Miner 12-72, Greiser 2-5, Mahony 1-4, Colling 1-2, Bosshamer 1-(minus 12), Haarberg 7-(minus 29). A: Moural 18-106, Dvorak 7-52, Shaw 4-28, Owens 6-15, Collingham 4-9.
PASSING—KC: Haarberg 8-18-1 81. A: Dvorak 9-12-0 166, Shaw 0-1-0 0.
RECEIVING—KC: Christner 2-42, Greiser 2-5, Mahony 1-13, Miner 1-9, Florell 1-8, O’Brien 1-4. A: Wessels 3-51, Moural 3-39, Boerkircher 2-46, Herzberg 1-30.