Jordan Bernhardy was alarmed. The Moore senior quarterback admits that while he laid on the ground after a being hit by a Norman defender last week, bad thoughts ran through his mind.
“At the time I was pretty scared,” Bernhardy said. “Numbness went through my body. So that’s when I was scared. But when they told me to move my toes and fingers and I did, that’s when I got relaxed.”
Bernhardy had to be carried off the field at Harve Collins on a stretcher as his team went on to lose 45-30. It turned out to be a neck sprain and after a 48-hour stretch of no-contact, he was back with his team preparing for this week’s game against rival Southmoore.
“In our offense, we really have two tailbacks in the backfield,” Moore coach Todd Watters said. “One of them they call a quarterback and one they call a tail back. The quarterback just happens to throw the football for us. He’s going to carry the ball, and he’s going to take a pounding. This is new to him. He’s a tough kid.”
Before Bernhardy went down, he was in the midst of putting on a show for the Lions. He had racked up 245 yards rushing on 22 carries. He was the game’s leading rusher by more than 130 yards.
However, Bernhardy believes his backfield teammate Ryan Lujan will be the one to have a big day when Moore faces Southmoore in the Big Cat Classic. Lujan rushed for 73 yards against the Tigers.
“Watching film I definitely see our offense can do some damage to them,” Bernhardy said. “I am expecting Lujan to have a big game. Need him to step up.”
Even in the loss to NHS, Watters said his team has taken giant strides since they lost to Westmoore in the season opener. Part of that has been opening up its run game and forcing the Tigers’ defense to pick its poison. They hope to do the same with the SaberCats.
“When you got Jordan Bernhardy and Ryan Lujan in the backfield, those are two kids defenses have to try and stop,” Watters said. “We’re running triple option offense. To some degree, they can determine who carries the football. But they have to account for each one of them, and a really quick slot in Jordan Norris and Stephan Robinson. It makes defenses play assignment football. If Jordan Bernhardy makes the right read, we should have a positive play.”
The SaberCats are coming off a crushing 31-13 loss to the Jaguars in which they were unable to slow down Westmoore’s passing game or get its own offense moving. They will be looking to get back into the win column against Moore.
Southmoore has won the last four matchups against Moore by a score of 175-59. Moore won its only game in the series back in 2008 in the Cats’ first season.