Game scoreless after one quarter.
After one quarter Friday night the Booneville Bearcats had 33 yards and had turned the football over once.
A second fourth down stop of the Apaches early in the second quarter triggered an offensive explosion that saw the Bearcats (3-1, 1-0 Conference 4A-4) post their third straight 300-yard rushing game.
The first stop had come on a fourth-and-goal at the 1-yard line as Kade England was kept out of the end zone. The second came after Brandon Ulmer was intercepted and the Bearcats had the ball at their 36 with 9:35 left in the first half.
Grant Rodatz — though Carson Ray was back in uniform the senior got the start at fullback — got 3 yards to the 39 and on the next play sophomore Andrew Robertson reached the edge and went 61 yards up the Apache sideline.
Austin Dobbs kicked the point after for a 7-0 lead with 9:02 left in the half.
On their next possession the Bearcats got a 27-yard pass from Ulmer to Ethan Dobbs on a third-and-17. Though Tommy Harper would punt four downs later, the completion would be the start of a 111-yard passing night by Ulmer.
Emiliano Torres rumbled 77 yards on the first offensive snap after Harper’s punt and the game was tied. Ethan Dobbs appeared to be clipped but no flag came and the play stood.
Jeremy Elliott returned the kickoff to the Pottsville (2-2, 0-1) 35 and Ray took over the fullback duties, carrying for 10 yards on two plays. After Ulmer got 6, Robertson scored his second touchdown on a run of 19 yards and Austin Dobbs made it 14-7.
Robertson netted no yards on his other three carries, finishing with five attempts for 80 yards to lead the Bearcats.
Torres punted for the Apaches four plays later and the Bearcats had 32 seconds with which to work. That would be plenty.
Ulmer ran for 7 and after a time out, hit Ethan Dobbs who made one man miss and outran another to the end zone for a 20-7 lead. The PAT was wide.
Out of halftime the Apaches got a touchdown run from Greyson Stevens but a personal foul penalty move the ball only to the Bearcat 25.
Stevens eventually hit Bradlee Denney for a touchdown from the 4 but the Stephen Judkins PAT was wide keeping it a 20-13 game.
And eight-play, 70-yard drive made it 26-13 with 5:13 left in the third quarter. Moving the chains for the second time on third down on the drive, Ulmer went 31 yards for the touchdown. A two point attempt by Rodatz was stopped short.
Ulmer had 70 yards rushing to go with his 111 passing.
Ray intercepted Stevens three plays later and the Bearcats need to go just 22 yards to extend the lead. The big play was an 18-yard strike to Trent Wooldridge, who got both feet down and secured the ball at the 2.
Ray scored the next play but another two point try failed to keep it 32-13 with 2:31 left in the quarter.
Pottsville converted a fourth down to start the final quarter but Jacob Gregory tackled Specer Bradley for a yard loss then slapped down a Stevens pass to bring up third-and-11. England got open on third down and went 39 yards for a touchdown to make it 32-19. The try for two was no good.
Evan Schlinker returned the kickoff to the 22 and the Bearcats kept the ball for the next 4:32 but came away with nothing after turning a fourth-and-inches into a fourth-and-5 plus due to illegal formation. The Bearcats were flagged seven times in the game.
The drive included another third down toss to Ethan Dobbs, who had 93 yards receiving on his three catches.
The Apache offense returned to the field for one play as Noah Reyes — the tackle leader with four solos and six assists — forced a fumble that Marcus Nichols recovered.
Mike Hesson, who had started accumulating yards in large chunks on the previous drive, went 46 yards for a touchdown on the next play to wrap up his 79 yard rushing night. With Ulmer hitting Ethan Dobbs for the two point conversion it was 40-19 with 5:52 left.
Pottsville started their next drive at their own 23 after a kickoff tackle by Chase Wiggins and Dalton Tatum and after three incomplete passes and a punt the Bearcats had the ball back with 5:22 to go.
Cam Brasher and Gabe Fennell earned one first down and Harper, Austin Dobbs and Fennell got a second one leaving the Bearcats needing only to have Schlinker take a knee twice to run out the clock on a third straight win.
The Bearcats will be on the road this week taking on Ozark, who opened conference play with a 47-14 win at Waldron Friday. Kickoff is at 7.