Pirates cruise into Bobcats’ den

The Pirates will head to Cloverdale Friday for their first Northwest League varsity football game in two years.

By Brad Mosher
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Neah-Kah-Nie running back Josh Longfellow (8) takes the hand-off from Jack Porter (4), while Tristan Bennett (53) supplies some blocking during the non-league road loss to Clatskanie Friday. Photo by Cody Mann/St. Helen’s Chronicle

A year after the Neah-Kah-Nie program was downgraded to junior varsity and eight-man level after being bruised up with injuries, the Pirates again have injuries on the mind.The Pirates’ head coach said Tuesday the team was hampered in the loss to Clatskanie on the road with the loss of two seniors – running backs Max Halverson and Greg Elligsen.

Now, Bennett is hoping the team will be at full strength when the Pirates face the Nestucca Bobcats in a 7 p.m. contest.

The Bobcats are coming off a 22-0 win over Warrenton, the team’s first win of the season.

The Pirates will be entering league play Friday as the second-ranked Northwest squad, in spite of the 1-2 non-league record against 3A level schools.

Knappa is the first on the poll at 18th, with the Pirates right behind at number 19. Vernonia is ranked 21 st, while Gaston was 23 rd on the list. Nestucca is listed at 28th on the 2A poll.

Going into league play Gaston and Vernonia have the best non-league record at 2-2. Knappa and Nestucca both have 1-3 records.

Top Bobcats
Nestucca is led by quarterback Cole Strober, who threw for 110 yards and ran for another 113 yards on 12 carries.

Kyle Zeller was the workhorse against Warrenton, with 125 yards on 32 carries. Strober threw for three touchdown passes.

The Bobcats started the season with three straight losses to Ilwaco from Washington (33-22), Willamina (51-20) and Monroe (55-20) before getting into the win column against Warrenton.

The Bobcats have scored 84 points in four games, while Neah-Kah-Nie has scored 51 points in three contests.

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