Last Wednesday, the Wildcats traveled to Mt. Vernon to face the Mountaineers for the second time this year as both teams fought for a chance to advance to round two of the state play-offs.
The two teams had a long, hard fight on their hands as the hard wind and rain added to the intensity of the contest, but it was the Wildcats who would win the battle by a score of 27-14.
The Wildcats were unable to make anything happen on their first possession, but after forcing the Mountaineers to punt for a second time, Cassville put the first points of the game on the board as Joseph Gouvion carried the ball in for a 15-yard touchdown.
Aaron Jamieson kicked the extra point to give Cassville an early 7-0 lead over Mt. Vernon.
The Mountaineers were forced to punt again on their next possession, which led to another Wildcat touchdown as Trevor Tanner ran in to the endzone.
Mt. Vernon blocked the following extra point attempt to hold Cassville's lead to 13-0.
In the second quarter, Cody Pierson intercepted a pass, which led to another touchdown for Cassville as Jon Haney ran the ball in to score, and the following extra point extended the Wildcats' lead to 20-0.
The Mountaineers were able to narrow the lead on their next drive as they moved the ball over 80 yards to put seven points on the board as the half came to an end.
The third quarter started as the Mountaineers kicked off and quickly shut down the Wildcats on their first drive of the half. The resulting turnover on downs ended with a touchdown pass for the Mountaineers, which put the score at 20-14.
Neither team was able to score again in the third quarter as both teams felt the pressure rising. Cassville was able to score for the fourth time in the fourth quarter as Gouvion ran the ball in from 39 yards out for the final touchdown of the game.
Jamieson was able to kick the extra point to widen the Wildcats' lead to 27-14 over the Mountaineers, which proved enough to move Cassville on to the next play-off game.
The Wildcats' offense played very well this week, making great use of the running game against the Mountaineer defense.
Head Coach David Large was pleased with his team's ability to move the ball up the field.
"Our line came through in a big way this week," said Coach Large. "I was really pleased with how they were able to hold off the Mt. Vernon defense and give our backs time to let their plays develop. Our runners did an excellent job of carrying the ball and finding the endzone against a strong defense."
This week quarterback Jake Nolan passed for 35 yards, and Trevor Tanner had one pass for a total of 19 yards.
Travis Northern led the game in receptions with a total of 38 yards, Jamieson had 10 yards, and Gouvion received for eight yards.
Gouvion was Cassville's rushing leader this week with a total of 114 yards. Haney accumulated 69 yards, Trevor Tanner carried for 41 yards, Nolan had 22 yards, and Ethan Couch had five yards rushing for the game.
The Wildcats had a good night on the defensive side as well.
"Coach Parnell did a great job getting our guys ready for the game," said Coach Large. "Our defense came through against a tough quarterback and made some crucial plays when they were needed."
Couch, the Big 8 Defensive Player of the Year, had the most tackles for the evening with a total of nine, including two sacks. Nathan Riehn tallied eight tackles in all, and J.R. Woodruff accumulated seven, including one sack.
Brent Elkins and Pierson made four tackles apiece, Robbie Coberly, Chris Smith, and Trenton Tanner had three tackles each, Josh Lewright and Garrett Mahurin managed two tackles apiece, and Matt Stockton had one tackle for the night.
Coach Large thanked all of the fans who showed up at the Mt. Vernon game to support the Wildcats as they try to make a strong finish for this year's post season.
"I was pleased to see so many people there to support our team," said Coach Large.