The triple option has a different meaning than usual for the Cassville Wildcat football team.
The three options for Cassville were Anthony Tolbert, Bowen Preddy and Zack Coenen.
The three combined to run for 293 yards, led by Tolbert's 162 yards and two touchdowns, to lead Cassville to a 37-6 win over the McDonald County Mustangs on Sept. 28 at Cassville High School.
"That's as good in the backfield as I've seen them have in a few years," coach Kellen Hoover said. "They've kind of brought some athleticism to go with their usual size this year and they are going to be a tough out for somebody. It's the best team we played to date. That's not to say we didn't play hard -- the boys played extremely hard. We just didn't make enough plays to win the game."
Cassville got on the scoreboard first, marching 71 yards in 11 plays on its first possession. Preddy got the touchdown on a 10-yard run before sophomore Drake Reese kicked the extra point to give the Wildcats a 7-0 lead with 3:42 left in the first quarter.
The Mustangs answered on their ensuing possession, going 80 yards in eight plays. Quarterback Ben Mora and wide receiver Marshall Foreman keyed the drive. Mora ran for 28 yards on the first play from scrimmage following Reese's kickoff and capped the drive with a seven-yard touchdown. Foreman ran twice on the drive, once for 16 yards and once for 25 yards.
Dylan Allison's kick was wide left, leaving the Mustangs trailing 7-6 with 37.6 left in the first quarter.
The teams traded punts on their next possessions, Cassville's punt was good for 41 yards after being downed at the Mustang one-yard line, while the McDonald County punt was good for only 15 yards, giving the Wildcats the ball on the McDonald County 25-yard line.
Cassville covered the 25 yards in four plays, with Tolbert plunging in from the one. Reese's kick made the score 14-6 with 7:08 left in the half.
The teams traded turnovers on their next possessions, with McDonald County's Boston Dowd ending a Cassville threat with an interception.
But following a Mustang punt that pinned the Wildcats back to their own 22-yard line with less than a minute to go until halftime, Cassville used a big play to stun the Mustangs.
On first down, Preddy got loose for a 78-yard touchdown, but a holding penalty appeared to save McDonald County. But on the next play, Tolbert went 90 yards to give Cassville a 21-6 lead with just 19.1 seconds left in the half.
Cassville then took the opening kickoff of the second half and marched 65 yards in five plays to stretch the lead to 27-6 with less than two minutes gone from the third quarter.
"You hear about those two for ones, but they never seem to happen in high school football, but they got one," Hoover said. "The one in the final seconds of the first half really hurt and then they come out and put a good drive together to score again. Them getting two for one really put us behind the eightball. We had a tough time coming back from that point, but I didn't think our kids quit."
Cassville scored its final touchdown on a 23-yard pass from Shannon Hanney to D.J White before Reese closed out the scoring with a 33-yard field goal late in the fourth quarter.
Mora finished with 52 yards on the ground and completed eight of 12 passes for 56 yards. Oakley Roessler, after averaging almost 200 yards a game in the Mustangs' first five games, was held to 47 yards on 18 carries, while Foreman finished with 37 yards on three carries and Joe Brown had 18 yards on five carries.
Dowd caught three passes for seven yards, while Reece Cooper (four yards) and Joe Brown (34) both caught two and Foreman had one for 11 yards.
Michael Williams led the defensive charts for McDonald County with 14 tackles. Brown had 12.
The Mustangs fall to 3-3 heading into their Oct. 5 game against Lamar at MCHS. Kickoff is at 7 p.m.Sports on 10/04/2018
Print Headline: Triple Option Terrorizes Mustangs