BY JIM MISUNAS
DODGE CITY – Joey Soupiset intercepted two passes and the Great Bend Panthers earned four takeaways to defeat Dodge City 38-13 in Friday’s Western Athletic Conference football game.
Soupiset recovered an onside kickoff that triggered the Panthers’ 31-0 burst and preserved a second-half shutout with two second-half interceptions. He read Dodge City quarterback Beau Foster on his goal-line interception.
“That was a big play,” Soupiset said. “We were in man-to-man and I stayed with my receiver. I saw the quarterback roll out and stepped up and read the football.”
Linebacker Blake Penka, who recovered a Dodge City fumble forced by Pablo Martinez’ strip, tipped the football on Soupiset’s second interception when the Dodge City public address announcer said “Soupy” with the interception. Soupiset also delivered a drive-stopping tackle on Dodge City’s Beau Foster.
Great Bend (2-2, 1-1 WAC) outscored the Red Demons 31-0 after trailing 13-7 in the second quarter. The Panthers play Wichita West next week to start three home games.
Alan Miramontes’ fumble recovery at the 5-yard line on a mixup in the Red Demons’ backfield led to a 21-13 halftime lead. Koy Brack powered over from the 1-yard line.
“I saw the football on the ground and we had a chance to go for a touchdown, and I came up with the football,” he said. “It always good to get turnovers.”
Miramontes disrupted Dodge City’s offense with eight tackles.
“I wanted to beat Dodge City, a team I don’t like,” Miramontes said. “It was big time getting some turnovers.”
Safety Dalton Miller had 14 tackles and linebacker Brock Blessing contributed 12 tackles.
“We did a great job making adjustments,” said Great Bend coach Erin Beck. “We had players step up and put pressure on them. We did a great job rallying to the football. We did better with our linebackers helping our secondary out.”
Quarterback Koy Brack scored three rushing touchdowns and completed a touchdown pass to Dalton Bieker.
Brack rushed for 150 yards and scored a pair of second-half touchdowns and Dani Franco added a 21-yard field goal. The Panthers rushed for 243 yards as Gage Fritz added 96 yards. Brack threw for 139 yards.
“They were giving us the quarterback run game and Gage was setting him up his blocks,” Beck said. “Our offensive line played much better.”
Dodge City (1-3, 0-1) passed for 281 yards and rushed for 153 yards.
The first half swung back and forth with the Panthers leading 21-13 keyed by second-quarter touchdowns.
The Panthers took advantage of friendly field position after Soupiset recovered an onside kickoff with Dodge City leading 13-7. Receiver Dalton Bieker beat Carlos Gamboa for a 44-yard touchdown pass from Brack.
Bieker had four catches for 122 yards.
Great Bend led 7-0 when Gage Fritz scored on a 6-yard run behind and Payton Doll and Andrew Wettengel. Dodge City roared ahead 13-7 on a 79-yard scoring pass from Beau Foster to Dawson Williams and an 8-yard TD by Foster.
PANTHERS 38, DEMONS 13
GB 7 14 0 17 – 38
DC 0 13 0 0 – 13
GB—Gage Fritz 6 run (Dani Franco kick), 4:46
DC—Dawson Williams 79 pass from Beau Foster (kick), 9:35
DC—Foster 8 run (kick failed), 5:45
GB—Dalton Bieker 44 pass from Koy Brack (Franco kick), 4:34
GB—Brack 1 run (Franco kick), 3:27
GB—Franco 21 FG, 9:56
GB—Brack 5 run (Franco kick), 7:20
GB—Brack 2 run (Franoco kick), 1:27
RUSHING—GB—52-243; Gage Fritz 18-97; Koy Brack 32-150; team 2-(-4); DC—43-153; Beau Foster 30-120; Jariel Johnson 9-45; Dawson Williams 1-0; team 1-(-7); John Johnson 1-(-6).
PASSING—GB—Brack 6-17-0, 141; DC—Foster 15-30-2, 281.
RECEIVING—GB—Dalton Bieker 4-123; Ty Esfeld 2-18; DC—Williams 2-91; De Jon Delgado 2-60; John Johnson 6-78; Carlos Gamboa 3-34; Jaiel Johnson 2-18.