The top-ranked Battle Ground Academy Wildcats kept their strong start to the season going Friday against 2018 Kentucky Class 4A state champion Franklin-Simpson.
In a battle of Wildcats, BGA (4-0), the top-ranked Division II-AA team in the latest statewide AP Poll, protected their home turf, taking down Franklin-Simpson (0-4) in convincing fashion 35-16. The Kentucky visitors are the defending state champions in their classification.
A slow start hampered the home Wildcats, as they took just a 7-0 lead into the second quarter, but they seemed to wake up before halftime.
Led by a couple of touchdown passes from Nick Semptimphelter and a 29-yard rushing TD by Sean Williams, BGA ripped off 21 points in the second frame, taking a 28-0 lead into halftime.
The visiting Wildcats would finally get on the board late in the third quarter with a touchdown and again with a field goal and TD in the fourth. Semptimphelter answered, though, by putting the finishing touches on with a 68-yard strike to Garnett Hollis Jr. for the duo’s second TD connection.
Semptimphelter finished 15-of-24 passing for 258 yards and four TDs, but he threw his first interception of the season as well. He now has 16 TDs against the one pick, and he eclipsed the 1,000-yard mark for the season on Friday.
Hollis caught five passes for 95 yards and two scores, and Antonio Stevens and Xavier Shaw also had receiving TDs.
Defensively, BGA forced three turnovers, and Briston Bennett led the way with 10.5 tackles.
The undefeated Wildcats now get to turn their focus to revenge, as they travel next week to winless CPA (0-4), which beat BGA in the Division II-AA state finals a season ago.
BGA 35, Franklin-Simpson (KY) 16
FSHS – 0 0 7 9 – 16
PHS – 7 21 0 7 – 35
1Q — 5:52 — BGA —Shaw 49 pass from Semptimphelter
2Q — 11:06 — BGA — Stevens 7 pass from Semptimphelter
2Q — 7:20 — BGA — Williams 29 run
2Q — 3:43 — BGA — Hollis 20 pass from Semptimphelter
3Q — 0:18 — FSHS — Richardson 1 run
4Q — 7:17 — FSHS — Hollingsworth 29 FG
4Q — 5:17 — BGA — Hollis 68 pass from Semptimphelter
4Q — 2:12 — FSHS — Leandre 49 pass from Septimphelter