BRIDGMAN — Hunter Adams did a little bit of everything for Bridgman in the Friday, Sept. 6, eight-man football contest against visiting Lake Michigan Catholic.
The Bees’ senior quarterback had a hand in six of the Bees’ seven touchdowns, tossing four, rushing for one and even catching another in a 46-8 Southwest Michigan Eight-Man Football League victory.
“We’re a whole new team this year,” Adams said. “The past two years, we really haven’t put much up on offense, kind of looking like we don’t know what we’re doing. Our mentality as a team coming in is that we need to score every time we get the ball, and we need to be the best that we can be.
“This is exactly what we’re hoping for. We hope to keep going and keep improving each week, doing what we did tonight.”
Bridgman (2-0) nearly completed that task of scoring every drive, finding the end zone on seven of eight team drives in the game. The Bees tallied 406 yards of offense, 314 of which were generated by Adams.
“Hunter is a talented kid, he’s a big kid,” Bridgman coach Aaron Locke said. “Eight-man football is very good about allowing you to showcase certain talents. It actually, in some ways, allows you to be a little more creative. We were able to tap into that.
“Defensively the kids really stepped up and played hard. We’re real proud of them.”
Adams opened the scoring with a 1-yard run on the Bees’ first drive.
Bridgman exploded in the second quarter, scoring 26 points. Adams found Donnie Necas on the second play of the quarter with a 57-yard scoring strike.
"Hunter had a nice ball ... try to high-point it is what the coaches taught us in practice ... and I came down with it." Necas said of the play.
After forcing a Lakers punt, Adams would again find Necas, this time from 50 yards out, to extend the Bees’ lead to 20-0. Necas had caught a long scoring strike from Adams earlier in the drive, but it was negated due to a holding penalty.
On the ensuing kickoff, Bridgman recovered an onside kick. On the very next play, Adams tossed another long ball, this time to Kristian Dalton, for a 34-yard score.
“Hunter Adams is a good quarterback,” Catholic coach Toby Riley said. “Him and (Donnie) Necas. We’ve still got to be able to tackle better on defense. That’s one of the keys in eight-man football, is you’ve got to be able to secure the tackle.
“We did some good things, we did some bad things. We’ll go back and clean it up. Hats off to Bridgman. They’ve got a good team over there.”
Catholic struggled offensively in the first half, save for a long, 65-yard touchdown sprint by quarterback Daiden Shaw. With Shaw’s scamper, the Lakers generated 103 yards of offense in the first half.
Catholic ended up with 163 total yards, all on the ground. Shaw had 142.
After an offensive explosion in week one, Riley said there are plenty of positives for Catholic to build upon.
“We’ll get back to work,” Riley said. “There’s so many little things. That’s the beast of it. If we clean up the little things, the teachable things, we’ll be alright.”
Adams would add a touchdown catch from backup quarterback Henry Branch just before halftime to give the Bees a 32-8 advantage at the break. Branch also added the Bees’ final touchdown in the fourth, a 13-yard scamper.
Adam’s final touchdown came in the fourth as well, when he connected with Nate Necas, who did the rest of the work breaking tackles and finding the end zone from 10 yards out.
“We’re really happy we were able to execute a game plan on all three sides of the ball,” Locke said. “We have a lot of respect for (Catholic). They have a lot of speed, and they played a great game last week. We’re just real proud of our kids and our offensive line.
“Everybody sees the touchdowns, everybody sees the big passes. When your quarterback has got five seconds to throw, that definitely makes things go well.”
Bridgman will play at home against Vermontville Maple Valley next week.
In the post-game huddle Locke asked this players "Did you hear the crowd tonight?"
"Bees are back!" they responded.
— David Johnson contributed to this report
St. Philip 36, New Buffalo 15
Battle Creek St. Philip scored 21 unanswered points to defeat New Buffalo on Saturday. The Bison trailed Fighting Tigers 22-15 at halftime and were shut out in the second half.
New Buffalo hosts Martin at 7 p.m. Friday.