FOOTBALL: Friday, Oct. 16, 2020
One week after being shutout for the first time in 121 games dating back to 2007, the Garden City Buffaloes football team erupted for its best offensive output of the 2020 season on Friday night, Oct. 16, with a 38-8 triumph over Ulysses at Buffalo Stadium.
Friday’s southwest Kansas matchup was the first between the two schools since 2009 and came about with two Wichita schools games being called off which forced the Buffs to find two new opponents.
In the overall series history, Garden City now owns a 15-5-0 advantage over the 4A Tigers.
The Buffaloes got on the scoreboard first, getting a 51-yard Jerry Arteaga scamper down the right sideline and Issac Rivera’s PAT kick made it 7-0 at the 7:06 mark of the opening stanza. The Buffs tacked on a second TD on a 34-yard pass and run play from Caleb Wiese to Colin Kleysteuber. Rivera’s kick upped the lead to 14-0.
Rivera tacked on a 3-point field goal from 21 yards out at the 11:15 mark of the second quarter after a Buff drive fizzled at the 5-yard line.
Seemingly in control, the Buffs gift-wrapped the Tigers’ only score of the night when the center snap sailed over the head of punter Ryan Heiman’s head and he attempted to punt it out of the end zone, but the ball was blocked and the Tigers recovered for a touchdown. Jessie Rosales ran it in from the 3-yard line for the 2-point conversion, cutting the Garden lead at 17-8 with 7:46 left before halftime.
The Buffs answered back with two big plays before intermission. Josh Janas scored from 5 yards out at the 3:54 mark and then Arteaga hauled in another pass from Wiese and raced 51 yards with just 0:01 second left on the clock.
Janas had his biggest offensive output of the season, carrying the ball 31 times for 180 yards (5.8 avg.) and the two TDs. Wiese was 7-of-15 for 161 yards and 2 scores without an interception. The 4 fumbles were the only downside of the Buffs’ best offensive and defensive efforts of the season.
“I thought we fought through some of the fumbles on offense, so I’m really proud of how the kids hung in there,” head coach Brian Hill said. “We’ve struggled a lot of the year on offense, so it was nice to see them get some big plays and gain some confidence. Our defense really stepped up and did a very good job of controlling the game.”
The win improved the Buffs to 2-5 overall and snapped a 3-game losing streak. Next up will be Great Bend, which will come to Garden City on Oct. 23 for the final Western Athletic Conference game of the season. The Buffs are 1-2 in the WAC while Great Bend is 0-3 and 0-6. The Panthers did not play Friday night as they reportedly were quarantined due to the COVID-19 outbreak. They were to have faced Goddard-Eisenhower.
Ulysses 0 8 0 0 — 8
Garden City 14 17 7 0 — 38
GC: Jerry Arteaga 51 run (Issac Rivera kick), 7:06
GC: Colin Kleysteuber 34 pass from Caleb Wiese (Issac Rivera kick), 3:07
GC: Issac Rivera 21 field goal
ULY: Blocked GC punt and recovered in end zone (Jessie Rosales run), 7:46
GC: Josh Janas 5 run (Issac Rivera kick), 3:54
GC: Jerry Arteaga 51 pass from Caleb Wiese (Issac Rivera kick), 0:01
GC: Josh Janas 14 run (Issac Rivera kick), 4:04
1st Downs 3 19
Rushes-Yards 25-35 49-305
Passing Yards 49 161
Passes (Com-Att-Int) 10-23-1 7-15-0
Fumbles-Lost 0-0 4-4
Penalties-Yards 7-65 5-45
Punts-Avg. 11-33.0 3-21.0
Possession Time 20:56 27:04
Garden City Individual Statistics
RUSHING: Janas 31-180, Arteaga 3-65, Wiese 9-40, Heiman 2-11, Kleysteuber 4-9.
PASSING: Wiese 7-15-161-0.
RECEIVING: Arteaga 1-51, Ramsey 1-46, Kleysteuber 2-35, Metzen 2-24, Janas 1-5.