Nov. 5—BILLINGS — Columbia Falls quarterback Cody Schweikert threw for two touchdowns, ran for another and the Wildcats knocked off unbeaten Billings Central Saturday in the State A football playoffs, 21-16.
Schweikert threw for 247 yards and ran 16 times for 62 yards for the Wildcats (8-2), who advanced to the semifinals at Corvallis next Saturday. The Blue Devils defeated Laurel 24-17 in another quarterfinal.
The second TD, with 8:54 left in the game, put the Wildcats up 21-10 and seemed to give them some breathing room.
The Rams (9-1) took that away by driving 80 yards in less than two minutes. Xavier Brackenridge's 1-yard run cut the gap to 21-16 with 6:57 left; Central tried for two but had a toss sweep stopped short.
The Wildcat defense took over from there: Columbia Falls punted twice in the final 4:44, and both times was able to turn the Rams over on downs — first at their 43, and then at their 38.
"Two really good teams that let it all out on the field," Wildcats coach Jaxon Schweikert said. "Both teams were exhausted at the end. And we won because we were able to make a couple more than they did."
Central jumped ahead on Ayden Salter's 5-yard run in the first quarter, but Columbia Falls answered with Miller's long TD — his only catch — and an 18-yard TD run by Schweikert.
The Wildcats led for good, 14-7, at 10:07 of the second quarter. They had a chance for more but Salter intercepted a Schweikert pass near the Rams goal line with 27 seconds left in the half.
That set up a tense final two quarters.
Rams quarterback Adam Balkenbush threw for 83 yards.and ran for 58; Brackenridge ran 23 times for 128 yards.
Hill had six catches for 118 yards for the Wildcats, and Mark Robison had three for 63.
Columbia Falls outgained the Rams 342-293.
The Blue Devils, the second seed out of the Western A, and Wildcats, the No. 4 seed, have not played this season.
C-Falls 7 7 7 0 — 21
BC Rams 7 0 3 6 — 16
BC — Ayden Saler 5 run (Jack DeBourg kick)
CF — Chance Miller 61 pass from Cody Schweikert (Kai Golan kick)
CF — Schweikert 18 run (Golan kick)
BC — DeBourg 38 FG
CF — Jace Hill 59 pass from Schweikert (Golan kick)
BC — Xavier Brackenridge 1 run (run failed)