SIDNEY - In their first-round game of the Nebraska School Activities Association Class C-1 football playoffs, the 8-1 Sidney Red Raiders hosted the 6-3 Gothenburg Swedes Friday night on a cool but dry evening at Weymouth Field.

The game began with Gothenburg struggling to move the ball, failing to secure a first down on their first two possessions. On the other hand, the Red Raiders capitalized on their second possession of the game, driving 66 yards in 8 plays. Quarterback Isak Doty ran for a 6-yard touchdown, but the PAT was missed, giving Sidney an early lead of 6-0.

Gothenburg started to find some momentum, driving from their own 26 to the Sidney 8-yard line. However, on third and goal, Gothenburg quarterback Trey Stevens' pass intended for Kooper Koehn was intercepted by Sidney's Landon Riddle at the 6-yard line, ending Gothenburg's threat. This marked Riddle's fifth interception of the season.

Sidney continued to assert their dominance, driving to their own 43 in seven plays. Quarterback Isak Doty connected with Landon Riddle on a 53-yard touchdown pass, and following a successful 2-point conversion Sidney extended their lead to 14-0.

The Sidney defense remained strong, shutting down Gothenburg and forcing a punt. Sidney then mounted a 9-play drive, advancing to the Gothenburg 10-yard line, but the clock ran out in the half, with Sidney still leading 14-0.

Sidney received the second-half kickoff and engineered a 9-play drive, with Luke Holly scoring on a three-yard run to extend Sidney's lead to 21-0.

Gothenburg managed to get on the board with a 13-play drive, as running back Evan Johnson scored on a 4-yard touchdown run. The 2-point conversion was successful, cutting Sidney's lead to 21-8.

Sidney responded with a methodical 14-play drive, consuming 7 minutes and 39 seconds of clock time. Luke Holly scored his second touchdown of the game from the 2-yard line, and the PAT was good, putting Sidney ahead 28-8 with just 5:49 remaining in the game.

Gothenburg didn't give up and answered with an 8-play, 68-yard drive, culminating in an 11-yard touchdown pass from Trey Stevens to Jackson Daum. However, the 2-point conversion attempt was unsuccessful, leaving Sidney with a 28-14 lead.

Gothenburg attempted an onside kick, but it was unsuccessful. Sidney effectively ran out the clock, securing a 28-14 victory and improving their record to 9-1 on the season.

Sidney's offense had a strong showing, accumulating 383 total yards, with 266 yards coming on the ground and 117 yards through the air. Luke Holly rushed for 143 yards on 25 carries and two touchdowns, while Isak Doty contributed 123 yards on 25 carries and one touchdown. Doty also had 117 passing yards, completing 7 of 8 passes with one touchdown. Landon Riddle was a key receiver, catching five passes for 83 yards and one touchdown.

On the Gothenburg side, sophomore Evan Johnson led the team with 75 rushing yards on 18 carries, and the Swedes finished the game with 228 yards of total offense.

With this victory, Sidney advances to the C-1 quarterfinals and will host the 8-2 Pierce Bluejays next Friday. Pierce, the fifth-seed, beat the number 12 seed Omaha Roncalli Catholic 34-14 to advance. Kickoff at Weymouth Field is scheduled for 3:00 p.m. MDT. The game will air on News Channel Nebraska radio station, Cheyenne County Country (1340 AM and 95.7 FM), thebigboy987.com, and on the free NCN app..