"In the first half, we had a few chances to put the game away but couldn't capitalize," Large said. "Then in the second half, we came out and put the game away."
The Springfield Catholic Fighting Irish (0-2) were just outpowered by the visiting Cassville Wildcats (2-0). The Wildcats had 330 rushing yards to the Fighting Irish's 114 and 106 passing yards to their 76. The difference resulted in a huge 41-7 victory for Cassville.
Junior Brian Elkins and backfield partner, junior Jared Bouzek, put up huge numbers on the opening drive, which ended with a two-yard touchdown run by Elkins. After an extra point by senior Nick Schlichtman, the Wildcats were up 7-0.
After having to punt the ball away on their second possession, junior Tim Orrell connected with junior Michael Baker for a 20-yard touchdown pass. Schlichtman added his second extra point of the night to put the 'Cats up 14-0.
The final score of the half came off a three-yard run by Elkins, his second touchdown of the night, leaving 7:06 on the clock, before the half. Schlichtman kicked his third extra point of the night to give Cassville a 21-0 lead.
Before the first half ended, Catholic drove down the field on a 19-play, 80-yard drive, which ended with a one-yard run by Tanner Herbel. The extra point was good, and the second half ended with the score 21-7.
In the second half, Baker made his second visit to the end zone on a 24-yard run. After a missed extra point by Schlichtman, the Wildcats were up 27-7.
With 2:13 left in the third quarter, Elkins made his third touchdown of the game on a three-yard run. Senior Jason Bromley hit the extra point and Cassville led 34-7.
In the final quarter, junior Kirk Myers crossed the goal line on a one-yard run to give Cassville its sixth score of the night. Bromley came out and put his second extra point through the uprights to leave Cassville with a 41-7 victory.
On offense, Elkins was once again the rushing leader. He carried the ball 14 times for 127 yards and three touchdowns. He was followed by Bouzek who had 12 carries for 98 yards. Orrell went six-for-nine for 106 yards in the air and one touchdown, completing three passes with Baker for 64 yards and one touchdown, two passes with Bouzek for 33 yards and one pass with Elkins for nine yards.
On the defensive side of the ball, Elkins and junior Nick Pianalto were the stars with each tallying eight tackles. Senior Cody Ricklefs and sophomore Dannon Rose had seven tackles were credited with seven tackles each.
Other notables were sophomore Kelby Haynes with four tackles, and junior Shelby Hollingsworth, senior Clay Craig and senior D.J. Meadows who each had three tackles. Pianalto and senior Cody Ricklefs were credited with one fumble recovery apiece.
The special teams also did their part. Bromley went two-for-two on extra points and kicked off a total of seven times for 418 yards and an average of 59.7 per kick. Schlichtman went three-for-four on extra points.
This Friday night, Cassville will travel to Mt. Vernon (1-1) for a Big 8 Conference meeting. Last week, Mt. Vernon lost to conference foe, Seneca (2-0) by a score of 40-7.
"It'll be a tough game," said Large. "They're a physical team and predicted to finish atop the Big 8 Conference. This game will help show where we stand."
Mt. Vernon's Thomas Brock returned to the field last week on defense. Whether or not Brock will return as the Mountaineers' quarterback this week is unknown.
Kick-off for the game is at 7 p.m. this Friday night.