The visiting Wildcats were held to 27 yards of offense in the first half as Somerset rolled up a big lead and cruised to a 43-14 victory to remain unbeaten in district play.
In addition to their inability to move the football, the Cats were also plagued by turnovers, losing five fumbles and an interception.
"If you go three-and-out and punt, you're at least putting them in better position than what we were giving them," Evarts coach Ovie Canady said. "The turnovers killed us. You can't beat anybody doing that."
The Briar Jumpers wasted little time taking control of the game. The Wildcats went three-and-out on their first possession, losing 10 yards in the process. Somerset's J.J. Wilson slipped through untouched to block J.D. Middleton's punt and carried it to the end zone for the Jumpers' first touchdown and a 6-0 lead.
"The blocked punt was big," Somerset coach Jay Cobb said. "We didn't think we'd get it we actually had a return set up on that and just sent the two edge guys. Wilson made a nice play on it."
After forcing another Evarts punt, Somerset efficiently marched 43 yards in six plays to find the end zone again. Junior quarterback Ross Deaton hooked up with senior receiver Ray Norman for a 7-yard scoring pass, then connected with Matt Salmons for the two-point conversion to give the Jumpers a 14-0 lead with 5:22 remaining in the first quarter.
Somerset scored again early in the second quarter after Evarts again gave the Jumpers a short field. After the Cats went three-and-out for the fourth straight possession, the punt snap sailed over Middleton's head and was recovered by Somerset's Kyle Spears at the Evarts 14.
Two plays later, senior running back Scotty Newell scored on a 12-yard run. John Wright Polk booted the extra point to extend the Jumpers' lead to 21-0.
Polk added a 34-yard field goal later in the quarter to set up Somerset's 24-0 halftime advantage.
The Wildcats managed just two first downs in the first half and were limited to just three yards rushing on 25 carries.
Canady credited Somerset nose guard Kenny Hughes for disrupting the Cats' running game.
"He was killing us. He probably made 15 tackles the first half," he said.
"We were kind of surprised they singled him," Cobb said of Hughes. "They didn't double him very much, and than enabled him to make some plays."
The Wildcats were the victims of a fluke turnover after forcing Somerset to punt on the first series of the second half. The ball apparently bounced and brushed the leg of an Evarts player, and the Jumpers recovered at the Evarts 20.
Somerset again capitalized on the turnover as Deaton scored on an 11-yard keeper to push the Jumpers' lead to 30-0.
A Dustin Mefford fumble at the Evarts 24 resulted in yet another Somerset touchdown. Deaton scampered 20 yards to set up Kenny Hughes' 2-yard scoring burst.
On their ensuing possession, the Wildcats finally put together a drive, going 86 yards in 11 plays. Mefford led the way, carrying five times for 52 yards before senior fullback Mike Lunsford bulled his way into the end zone from 3 yards out. Quarterback Derek Cochran found Logan Napier for the two-point conversion.
The Jumpers added one final touchdown on an impressive 51-yard run by Newell that included several nifty cuts. Polk added the extra point.
With both teams substituting heavily in the fourth quarter, Jimmy Langley set the final margin with a 24-yard touchdown run.
Canady expressed his satisfaction with the Cats' defensive performance. Evarts held Somerset under 200 yards of offense and largely kept the Jumpers from sustaining long drives.
"We gave up a couple of big plays down the stretch, but overall, I thought we did pretty good defensively," he said. "We played decent against the pass knocked a couple down and had a couple of dropped interceptions."
"Offensively, we've got a lot of work to do," Cobb said.
The loss dropped Evarts to 2-5 overall and 1-3 in district play. The Cats likely need wins in their final two district games Friday against Williamsburg and Oct. 28 against Pineville, both at home