One of the reasons behind Bedford’s persistent rushing attack might’ve been a combination of the rain and wind Friday night, but the game-breaking ability of Jesse Feaster and the tough running of Erik Groat and Jeremiah Jaber provided the impetus for the Bisons to keep up the ground game as they downed visiting Bishop Carroll 34-20 in a late-season LHAC matchup.

The Bisons clinched a playoff spot with the win, improving to 6-3 on the season. Bedford coach Wes Swaim was decidedly low key when asked how he felt about making the playoffs for the fourth time in his four-year tenure.

“I’m going to Disney,” Swaim quipped. “We’ve been a little bit spoiled. Every year I’ve been here we’ve made the playoffs, but I’m sure there’ll probably be a time when we’ll have a down year. You can’t take anything for granted, and I try to teach the kids that. They have to come out and earn their way into the playoffs.”

The Huskies came prepared for the battle, scoring first as Brendan Julock refused to be tackled during the first drive. Julock carried on back-to-back draw plays, taking the first for 17 yards and breaking tackle after tackle on the second to score from 23 yards out to give the Huskies the early 6-0 lead. The point after attempt was blocked.

Jaber recovered a Julock fumble deep inside Bishop Carroll territory to set up Bedford’s first score, a 1-yard plunge by quarterback Pete Westwood to tie the game at 6.

Midway through the second quarter, the Bisons scored on an impressive nine-play drive in which Feaster (13 carries, 185 yards) carried for 40 yards and Groat (9-50) carried for 36, including a bruising 20-yard touchdown run. Westwood threw to Levi Clapper for the conversion to give Bedford the lead for good at 14-6.

Feaster put his improvisational skills to dazzling effect in the second half. Feaster evaded a slew of would-be tacklers en route to a 62-yard score on the second play of the third quarter. Toward the end of the third quarter, Jaber dug the Bisons out from deep within their own territory after the Huskies downed a punt on the 1-yard line to set up another opportunity for Feaster. Westwood pitched to Feaster on the option right, but Feaster reversed field and swept by everyone on his way to the 87-yard score.

“He did come out and have a good game,” Swaim said of Feaster. “The weather was definitely a factor for both sides, but he was able to do what he had to do to get yards. We’ve been having a little bit of a fumble bug, but it looks like it got taken care of tonight. These kids all year have been resilient and fought back, and they don’t let a whole lot bother them. You have to play with amnesia sometimes, and they definitely do.”

Julock, a freshman, led the Huskies (2-7) offense with 15 carries for 115 yards and two scores. Quarterback Joey Shrift was 4-for-8 for 66 yards, including a 17-yard touchdown pass to Marcus Rhodes late in the fourth quarter.

“The fifth game of the season, the Westmont game, he started to learn the offense a little better,” said Bishop Carroll coach Craig Sponsky. “Not perfect yet, but we felt he gave us a little better chance to pick up some more yardage. We didn’t have to block people as long. He did play well, but our guys in front were getting in people’s way.

“We did have one pretty costly turnover in our territory, then the punt return. Those two things on top of how good a runner Feaster is, it’s an uphill battle. We were there and he made us miss. Our kids try hard. It’s a compliment to (Feaster) and the people that make the blocks for him.”

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