This past Friday, the Cassville Wildcats (6-0/3-0) defeated Lamar (1-4/0-4) with a final score of 50-14. It looks like the long trip didn't affect the team at all, and neither did the cold.
On the night, the Wildcats had 30 carries for 220 yards to Lamar's 39 carries for 97 yards. Lamar had 183 yards on 11 completions to the 'Cats' 149 passing yards on four completions. That's a total of 369 yards of offense for Cassville and 280 for Lamar.
"I felt like we did some good things at times, but we still have some things to work on," said Coach David Large. "Our secondary is giving up some things in the passing game and some other little things defensively. Offensively, we've got some guys up front that we've got to get playing better. All in all, we still played a good game."
In the first quarter alone, Cassville put up 23 points to Lamar's 6, and from there, the Wildcats never looked back. They scored 12 points in the second quarter and 15 in the third to give them the 50-13 win.
Offensively, juniors Michael Baker, Jared Bouzek and Brian Elkins paved the way. Elkins had 16 carries for 145 yards and five touchdowns and two receptions for a total of 25 yards. Baker had one reception for 70 yards and one carry for 20 yards, and Bouzek had one reception for 54 yards and one carry for three yards.
Other notables were junior quarterback Tim Orrell, who went four-for-eight for 149 yards and three touchdowns and three carries for 31 yards. Senior Cody Ricklefs had two carries for 17 yards.
Sophomore Dannon Rose and senior Scott Fitzpatrick helped the defense hold Lamar. Both players were credited with seven tackles each. Juniors Shelby Hollingsworth and Nick Pianalto and Ricklefs tallied six tackles apiece while senior D.J. Meadows, sophomore Ryan Rowley and senior Tony Sizemore all had one interception. Pianalto also contributed one fumble recovery.
On special teams, senior Jason Bromley kicked off nine times for 524 yards (an average of 58.2 yards), punted twice for 47 yards (an average of 23.5 yards) and went one for one on field goals. Senior Nick Schlichtman went three for four on extra points; the one miss was blocked.
When asked about last week's game, Baker said, "We played as a team. Offensively, we played pretty good, and defensively, even though we allowed 14 points, we played pretty good."
This week, the 'Cats will travel to East Newton (0-6/0-4) to play another Big 8 game. Last week, East Newton lost to conference foe Seneca (6-0/3-0) in a 40-0 blowout.
"We need to play and play as team," said Rose when asked his thoughts on the upcoming game against the Patriots. "We need to win. That'd be nice."
Coach Large said discipline will be the key word for the Wildcats come Friday.
"Their coaches do a good job there," said Large. "East Newton has a young team, a lot of sophomores. They'll keep getting better and better as they get older. They run a lot of misdirection, so they make you play more disciplined football, so this week we'll be working on playing more disciplined football."
Not only will East Newton be eyeing their first win of the season, but defenders will look to stop Elkins as he approaches the 1,000 yards rushing mark. Elkins, in six games, has 109 carries for 774 yards and 16 touchdowns.