2022 Cougar Football 1-1 to Start the Season


Abby Mayer

BHSN football players line up to take on several tough opponents this season.

Friday night lights are back in the state of Indiana as high school football has kicked off. Bloomington North traveled up to 4A number three Mooresville before taking on BNL (Bedford North-Lawrence) the following week.
In the season opener, Mooresville jumped out to a quick start, scoring a touchdown on each of its first two drives while forcing a Bloomington North three-and-out in between. It took until midway through the second quarter for the Cougars to get on the board, as sophomore quarterback Dash King connected with senior wide-receiver Jarno Hicks for a touchdown, King’s first as a varsity starter. But, the Pioneers quickly responded with a touchdown of their own, and they took a 24-6 halftime lead.
The second half was smoother for Bloomington North, as King slowly found his footing and settled in. The game marked King’s first varsity start at QB following the departure of four-year starter Reece Lozano.
One of the few bright spots for Bloomington North came in the fourth quarter when the game was essentially out of reach. Freshman QB Braylon Oswalt found junior tight end Jack Leonard in the end zone for six, which marked Oswalt’s first career touchdown pass. Although it didn’t make a big difference in regards to the final score, Oswalt was able to benefit from the brief period of time that he was on the field.
“I was a little bit nervous, but after the first run play, and the first pass play, it was alright,” said Oswalt. “It gave me a little bit more confidence for the rest of the season.”
In the end, the Pioneer defense was too much for Bloomington North to overcome, as the Cougars fell to Mooresville, 38-13, and dropped to 0-1.
After the Mooresville loss, Head Coach Scott Bless wanted his players to move past the Pioneers and turn their focus to BNL. That included a full week of practice in which the Cougars were able to work on some things and prepare themselves for the Stars.
“The big thing we talked about going into the BNL game was winning up front, and the other thing we talked about was being the more physical team,” said Bless. “Coming off of a loss, that’s when you turn your attention to what we do, not what they do.”
Bloomington North was able to use what they worked on in practice to their advantage, as they played a much more complete game against BNL. Dash King, who appeared to be more comfortable in the pocket, threw for three touchdown passes, and JT Storm ran for two more. The defense allowed just 14 points, and it was an all-around strong game for the Cougars, as BHSN defeated BNL, 35-14, to improve to 1-1 on the season. Up next is a date with Terre Haute South, which is Bloomington North’s home opener. The game will include a few different ceremonies, including pregame (Senior Night) and halftime (50th Anniversary celebration).
Coach Bless knows the importance that Friday’s game holds, considering it’s the first Conference Indiana game of the season for the Cougars.
“Conference championship is a goal; you’ve got to win your conference games in order for that to happen,” said Bless. “(Terre Haute South) is a very good team. They’ve mirrored us; they lost week one to a really good team, and then had a nice win this week, so they’ve got momentum built up.”
“We’ve got to go toe-to-toe with them. It’s another one where our focus has got to be to win up front.”