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Kearney High defense anxious to bounce back in title game

Kearney High defensive back Josh Ray intercepts a pass during the Bearcats 45-0 victory over Norfolk. (KHGI){ }

Kearney High's defense has consistently been one of the top units in the state and for good reason. The Bearcats entered the quarterfinals of the playoffs, giving up on average, just 7 points. As Kearney has continued through the Class A gauntlet, opposing teams are starting to put more points on the scoreboard.

The Bearcats season high for points allowed before the quarterfinals was 16 points. However, the last two weeks Omaha Westside and Creighton Prep have eclipsed that total. The Junior Jays scored 20 2nd half points last week against KHS. Head Coach Brandon Cool knows his defense will have to play better against a high scoring Omaha North team.

"We're going to have to make sure we do a great job open field tackling," said Cool. "You're going to have to get guys into position to be successful. You have to get them stopped before they get started. And then you can't give up the big play in the passing game. We know they're (Omaha North) going to run whether it's 4th and 5 or 3rd and 8 they're going to run the football. We have to give their offensive line and their offense a lot of different looks up front. We might have to blitz a little bit more from the perimeter or up front. We'll put a game plan together that will hopefully be successful against their run game."

The Bearcats and Vikings will meet for the Class A state championship at 7:15 on Tuesday at Memorial Stadium.

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