Saturday, September 30, 2023

St. Joseph Christian wins a high-scoring affair against Pattonsburg

by Jeremy Benson,

Sponsored by

St. Joseph Christian 78 Pattonsburg 70

The game between the St. Joseph Christian Lions and the Pattonsburg Panthers was on pace to break the Missouri state record for most points in a game at halftime, but it was key defensive stops that secured the win for the Lions.

The game started with the Lions recovering an onside kick.  They immediately capitalized.  Cy Carlson almost scored on the first play of the game, but Gage Iddings chased him down at the 4-yard line.  But Peyton Hausman found a hole in the middle and cut back to find the end zone for a 4-yard touchdown.  After a Hausman 2-pt conversion, the Lions led 8-0 with 11:29 left in the first.  However, the lead was short-lived.  The Lions attempted another onside kick again.  This time Landon Preston scooped the ball and returned it for a touchdown.  After the conversion, the game was tied at 8 with 11:25 left.

It took a little longer for the next score.  The Lions added another score with 6:54 when Carlson ran to the wide side on the left and had all kinds of room from 27 yards out.  Hausman added another conversion to put the Lions up 16-8.

Pattonsburg fumbled on their next possession, and Carlson scored his second touchdown of the night from 10 yards out.  After the conversion failed, the Lions led 22-8 with 4:43 left.  Pattonsburg would answer when Iddings would find Wyatt Maize in the end zone from 1 yard out.  He then connected with Maize again on the conversion.  Pattonsburg would cut the Lion lead to 22-16 with 1:22 left.  That is where the 1st quarter would end.

The Lions would score early in the 2nd when Cy Carlson ran wide to the left again to score a 3-yard touchdown.  Carlson would convert the 2 points to put the Lions up 30-16 with 11:35 left in the half.  Pattonsburg would strike back when Iddings connected with a diving Camden Griffith in the end zone.  Iddings ran in the conversion to cut the Lion lead to 30-24 with 10:19 left in the half.

The Lions would strike again on a toss sweep to Shaden Morris.  He evaded a defender to score from 40 yards.  The conversion failed making it 36-24 Lions with 8:42 left in the half.  But it didn't take long for Pattonsburg to answer (stop me if you heard that before).  Iddings evaded a defender, dumping it to Griffith on a screen pass.  Griffith took it down the sideline 71 yards for the score.  Iddings connected with Gavin Humphrey on the conversion to cut the Lion lead to 36-32 with 7:41 left in the half.

Carlson ran it in from the 7-yard line with a quick sweep, again on the left side.  Carlson converted the 2 points to make it 44-32.  Once again, the Panthers answered when Iddings connected with Maize from 13 yards out with 4:41 left.  The same two players also connected on the conversion to make it 44-40.

Pattonsburg got their first stop with 4:20 left when Preston ripped the ball from Hausman when he was fighting for yards.  The Panthers capitalized when Iddings connected with a wide-open Griffith with 1:05 left.  The conversion failed, but Pattonsburg had their first lead at 46-44 with 1:05 left in the half.  The lead would be short-lived.  Levi Miller found Carlson, and he outran the Panther defenders for a 67-yard touchdown reception.  Carlson ran in the conversion to make it 52-46 Lions with 49 seconds left.

Pattonsburg had plenty of time left when Iddings found Preston on the right side.  Preston broke a tackle and evaded some defenders with a spin move to take it in the end zone from 43 yards out.  The same two would connect on the conversion to put Pattonsburg up 54-52 with 28 seconds left.  The Lions were unable to score before the end of the half.  With 106 total points in the first half, the game was on pace for a state record.

The Lions continued the scoring onslaught in the 2nd half when Hausman took the ball straight up the middle on a fullback trap.  The conversion failed.  Lions led 58-54 with 11:52 left in the 3rd.

The Lions defense held Pattonsburg on downs on their next possession.   Carlson would put the Lions up 10 when he ran the ball in from 9 yards.  With the failed conversion, St. Joseph Christian led 64-54 with 7:54 left.  But once again, Pattonsburg would not go away.  Facing another 4th down, Iddings found an open Preston who high-stepped it into the end zone.  Iddings converted the 2 points to make it 64-62 Lions with 6:53 left in the 3rd.

Pattonsburg recovered an onside kick after their touchdown.  They had a 1st and goal at the 1-yard line, but on the next play, Iddings was sacked by several Lions.  The Panthers were unable to score, turning it over on downs.  The Lions scored on their next possession when Cy Carlson swept around to the left side (again), and ran it 65 yards to the end zone.  After a Hausman conversion, St. Joseph Christian led 72-62 with 1:24 left in the 3rd.

Pattonsburg fumbled on their first play of the next possession when the snap hit the motion man.  The 3rd quarter ended with the Lions leading 72-62.

The Lions were unable to capitalize when the Panthers recovered a fumble 6 seconds into the 4th quarter.  Iddings would make the Lions pay when he found Griffith on a fade route in the end zone from 10 yards out.  Iddings found Humphrey for the conversion to make it 72-70 with 9:29 left.

Pattonsburg converted their second straight onside kick.  However, they were unable to take advantage of it, turning it over on downs with 7:39 left.

Cy Carlson took advantage when he once again ran to the left and found a hole taking it to the house from 44 yards out.  After the failed conversion, the Lions led 78-70 with 5:44 left.

Pattonsburg appeared to strike back quickly when Iddings connected with Preston for a long pass play, but Preston was knocked out of bounds by Shaden Morris at the one-yard line.  The Panthers fumbled on the next play which was recovered by the Lions with 5:01 left in the game.

The Lions then ran some time off of the clock driving the ball down the field.  They eventually got to the Panther 19-yard line, but turned it over on downs with 41 seconds left in the game.

The Panthers would drive into Lion territory.  They got to the Lions 29-yard line with 21 seconds left facing a 3rd and 1.  However, the next two plays resulted in incomplete passes, turning the ball over to St. Joseph Christian with 12 seconds left.  The Lions would end the game in victory formation with the final score 78-70.

In a game that had 70 points for both teams, you wouldn't think the word defense would be talked about, but the Lions defense came up big in the 2nd half, only allowing 2 scores on 8 possessions including stopping the Panthers on their final 3 possessions.

Postgame Coverage

Photos I took at the game

Livestream of the Game:

Sunday, September 24, 2023

Milan's fast start leads them to a 34-8 win over Trenton

by Jeremy Benson,

Sponsored by

Milan 34 Trenton 8

Milan quarterback Hunter Reed connected with Keaton Weter on a 24-yard touchdown pass on Milan's first drive against Trenton at Cal Hubbard Field on Friday night.  After forcing Trenton to punt, the Wildcats struck again with a 4-yard run from Carlos Cotto with 4:24 left.  When Trenton had to punt with 8 seconds left in the first quarter, Cotto took the handoff from his own 29-yard line and outran the Trenton Bulldog defenders down the sideline as the horn sounded.  The only negative for the Wildcats was the failed 2-pt attempt after the 3rd touchdown, but they would score on all three possessions of the quarter to lead 20-0.

Neither team would score in the 2nd frame.  Milan missed a 30-yard field goal, but was able to keep the Bulldogs offense at bay.

After the halftime where the 1975 Milan Wildcats Football team was inducted into the Milan C-2 Athletic Hall of Fame, the Wildcats came back out on their first possession and scored again.  Cotto found the end zone again with his 3rd rushing touchdown, this one from 20 yards out, to put Milan up 27-0.

Trenton was finally able to get on the board with 2:55 left in the 3rd when Gabe Novak scored from 7 yards.  He also ran in the 2-pt conversion to make it 27-8.

Carlos Cotto would score his fourth touchdown of the night with 5:33 left in the game when he outran Bulldog defenders again. This one was from 63 yards.  Cotto ended up with 233 yards on 12 carries on the night.

Milan capped off the night when Jose Garcia recovered a fumble with 3:16 left.  They were able to run out the clock to win 34-8.

I talked with Milan coach Mark Cole after the game and also talked with KTTN's Tom Johnson on the GRC Podcast.

Here are photos I took at the game:

Saturday, September 9, 2023

#4 Albany knocks off St. Joseph Christian 58-48 to remain unbeaten

by Jeremy Benson,

Sponsored by

Albany 58 St. Joseph Christian 48

Albany and St. Joseph Christian started conference play in the GRC West on Friday night after winning both non-conference games.  It was an unexpected matchup of unbeaten teams.  The Albany Warriors have had to replace a talented roster, including all-state quarterback Kemper Cline.  They knocked off #4 East Atchison to bring their record to 2-0.  The St. Joseph Christian Lions came into the season with one win in their last five seasons.  They doubled that win total in just two games this season by knocking off DeKalb and Stewartsville-Osborn.  

The game started with both teams going three and out on their first possessions.  After Albany punted on their second possession, the Lions were able to capitalize on a 2-yard touchdown run from Cy Carlson.  Carlson appeared to be stopped but reversed course to reach the end zone.  There were two big passes on the drive.  Levi Miller connected with Vail Freuchting on a 37-yard reception after Mason Stewart hit Shaden Morris for 34 yards.

After Albany turned it over on downs, the Lions were driving again, when quarterback Levi Miller went down with an apparent knee injury.  Stewart took the reigns behind center.  But with 17 seconds left in the 1st quarter, Elliot Mercer stripped Stewart of the ball on a run, and Albany took over as the quarter ended with the Lions leading 8-0.

The Warriors scored early in the 2nd quarter when Chase Cline ran it in from 9 yards.  After the conversion, it was 8-8.  The Lions answered when Stewart connected with Freuchting from 9 yards out to make it 14-8 with 6:58 left.  Kyle Emerson would then score his first touchdown of the night after he broke about 10 tackles (slight exaggeration) and streaked down the sideline for a 39-yard TD reception.  It was 14-14 with 5:48 left.

After a Carlson fumble, Albany scored again when Cline connected with Emerson on a 27-yard TD reception to make it 22-14 with 4:34 left.  The Lions would fumble a 3rd time, but would stop the Warriors at the 6-yard line to keep the score at 22-14 going into the half.

The Lions started the 2nd half with the ball, but a couple of penalties put them in a 4th and long situation that forced them to punt.  Emerson took advantage by returning the punt 39 yards for his 3rd TD of the night.  Warriors led 30-14 with 11:12 left in the 3rd quarter.

The Lions would start chipping away at the lead.  With 6:55 left, Miller (who returned in the 2nd half) shoveled a pass to Logan Hubble, scoring from 13 yards out.  After a conversion, it was 30-22 Albany.  The Lions would stop the Warriors on the next possession and force them to punt.  A bad snap by Albany gave St. Joseph Christian the ball at the Albany 6.  Stewart ran it in from the 6 on the next play to make it 30-28 Albany with 5:27 left.

Whenever Albany needed a big play, Kyle Emerson came up big.  And this was no exception.  It appeared that the Lions had the momentum, but on the next offensive play, Emerson scored from 45 yards to put the Warriors back up by 8 (36-28).  Both teams would be stalled on their next possessions, so the 3rd quarter ended with the Warriors up by 8.

With 9 minutes left in the game, Albany struck again when Cline found Emerson wide open on a 4th and 10.  It was Emerson's 5th touchdown of the night.  Albany led 44-28.  After stopping the Lions on the next possession, Albany scored again.  This time, Quentin Hurkman had a 5-yard run to make it 52-28.

It looked like Albany was running away with it, but the Lions would not go away.  Miller connected with Freuchting from 38 yards with 6:58 left to make it 52-34.  Then Miller connected with Carlson on a short reception inside the 10-yard line with 3:37 left to make it 52-40.

Albany would get their final score when Elliot Mercer ran it in from 17 yards with 2:48 left.  The Lions would answer.  Cy Carlson got them inside the 10-yard line on a long catch and run.  Then Miller connected with Freuchting again for his 4th touchdown of the night.  This one was from 4 yards with 2:28 left.  Albany would recover the onside kick and run out the clock to win 58-28.

Here is postgame coverage on the GRC Blog with interviews from both coaches and a discussion with Jered Rolves of Albany TV.

Here are photos that I took at the game.

Here is the broadcast of the game from Albany TV.

Saturday, September 2, 2023

Gallatin's offense stalls in 28-0 loss to Hamilton in 96th edition of the Highway 13 Rivalry

by Jeremy Benson,

Sponsored by

Hamilton 28 Gallatin 0

Gallatin traveled down Highway 13 to battle Hamilton for the 96th time.  With the expansion of the GRC, the two teams will not be playing next year, so it may be the last meeting for a while.  With the prospect of the rivalry being put on hiatus, both teams wanted to have bragging rights coming out of Friday's game.

Unfortunately for the Gallatin Bulldogs, starting quarterback Peyton Baker was injured on the first drive of the opening game against North Platte.  He was unable to go for the Bulldogs.  Gallatin turned to Sophomore Jackson Ohlberg, who would be making his first career start at quarterback.

The game was a defensive battle most of the night with both teams getting early stops.  Neither team was able to sustain drives, and when they started to put something together, penalties would stall the drive.  Hamilton was finally able to get on the board when Carter Kanoy rumbled down the sideline for an 81-yard touchdown with 1:35 left in the 1st quarter.  Titus McBee converted the two points with a quarterback keeper to put the Hornets up 8-0.  

It was more of the same in the 2nd quarter.  Both teams struggled to sustain drives and both teams continued to rack up penalties.  According to Chris Ward of Regional Radio KKWK, they combined for 24 penalties for 205 yards.  Hamilton was able to get another big play in the 2nd quarter when Tate Youtsey broke through up the middle for 49 yards to put them up 14-0.

Hamilton was able to add two more scores in the 4th quarter.  With 8:42 left, Youtsey blocked a punt and Kanoy returned it for a touchdown.  Youtsey finished the scoring with a touchdown with 5:03 left to make it 28-0.

I caught up with Chris Ward after the game to recap it on the GRC Blog.

Chris also interviewed both coaches.  Here is the interview with Gallatin coach Chris Holt:

Chris Holt Interview

Here is the interview with Hamilton coach Alex Lloyd:

Alex Lloyd Interview

Here are pictures that I took from the game:

Here are pictures of the game from McBee Images: