KENEDY – Despite the Kenedy Lions drawing first blood in the 101st Battle of Highway 181, the Karnes City Badgers scored four consecutive touchdowns to take the game, 24-8.

Kenedy’s lone score was at the 9:08 mark of the first quarter. This was on a long touchdown pass by Jaydin Chapa to Kameron Miller for 35 yards. Miller ran in the subsequent conversion to put the Lions up 8-0.

“Our defense had some struggles early, but they recovered and read their keys,” said Badgers head coach Jim Wood.

Karnes City rallied after that with a touchdown of their own with 3:06 to go in the first quarter, as Brayden Bowen punched it in from the one-yard line. The conversion failed, and the Lions retained their 8-6 after the first frame.

Karnes City’s lone score of the second quarter happened with 10:46 left in the half. Bowen completed a long, 66-yard pass to Jaden Jaramillo. They led 12-8 at the break.

KC added two more scores in the third quarter to widen the gap. The first was with 9:34 on the clock, as Bowen threw a 30-yard touchdown pass to Christian Jimenez. Those two hooked up again with just 10 seconds left in the third quarter, this time from 35 yards out.

Wood said that, despite the Badgers’ defense holding Kenedy scoreless for three quarters, the special teams unit still has things to work on. 

Statistically for Karnes City, Bowen was 11 of 16 passing for 218 yards, three touchdowns, and an interception. He also led KC’s rushers with 89 yards on seven carries and a touchdown.

Kolby Culpepper and Aaron Smith each had eight total tackles, with seven solo tackles apiece. Warrick Thompson had an interception on defense, and Sebastian Segura forced a fumble. 

Stats for the Lions, and commentary from head coach Shawn Alvarez, were not made readily available.

“Our fans really showed up in numbers,” Wood said. “I want to thank them for doing that, and I hope they keep coming.”

For their second game, the Badgers faced the Stockdale Brahmas for Military Appreciation Night at Poss Johnson Field. In their first game, Stockdale lost to Schulenburg, 14-13.

“We wanted to do the Military Appreciation Game as a way to pay respects to all from our communities who served or are serving,” Wood said.

“As for Stockdale, Coach (Andrew) King and I know each other well. He’s got some big kids and a good quarterback this year.”

The Lions faced the Louise Hornets for their second game at Lions Field. Louise fell to Ganado, 71-6. 

Kickoff for both games was on Friday, Sept. 6 at 7:30 p.m.

James Ratcliff is a high school sports contributor for The Karnes Countywide. He can be reached at 830-216-3864.