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Mother Nature stepped in Wednesday night at Tiger Stadium in Excelsior Springs and did what Maysville could not do. Orrick scored on every drive except its last possesion when the game was called due to lightning in the area as the Bearcats began defense of their Class 1 state title with a 38-0 win over the Wolverines.
The game was called with 4:19 left in the third period due to lightning in the area. The contest, which was played in wet and windy conditions all night, had already been delayed 40 minutes at the end of the first half.
After the second weather delay, lasting approximately 10 minutes, in the third period the game was ended to send the 11-0 Bearcats into Monday’s Sectional at Hamilton to meet the Hornets, who also remained unbeaten following a 35-0 win over Braymer Wednesday.
The Bearcats put an end to the Wolverines’ season at 5-6, while extending their own winning streak to 25 games.
For Orrick, it was business as usual as the Bearcat running trio of Kalija Rogers, Aaron Blyth and Logan Eubank combined for 274 rushing yards, while the defense shut down the Wolverines.
Rogers ran for 122 yards on 17 carries with a touchdown, while Eubank collected 91 yards on 9 attempts, and Blyth was called on 10 times to pick up 61 more. Blyth and Eubank each scored a pair of touchdowns.
“Logan probably had his best game as a running back,” Orrick Coach Pat Richard said. “Kalija ran the ball hard. We told Aaron before the game that we were going to show the fullback and show Logan. He got his carries, but not nearly as many as he normally gets, and he did a great job of blocking and carrying out his fakes.”
The Maysville running attack, which came into the night averaging 6 yards a carry, was completely shut down by Orrick. The Wolverines picked up just 38 yards on 24 carries, while the passing game added just 29 more on a pair of completions.
Both teams opened the game as if it would be a shootout. Orrick took the opening kickoff and drove 75 yards in 9 plays with Rogers scoring on a 14-yard run after a 4-yard touchdown run by Eubank was called back on a holding penalty. Blyth’s conversion run spotted Orrick an 8-0 lead. Maysville answered right back and drove from its own 36 to near the Bearcat goal.
Things quickly turned for the Wolverines when Clayton Jones recovered a fumble on the Orrick 4-yard line to end the Maysville threat on the 10th play. Any momentum the Wolverines had gained during the drive was gone.
Maysville picked up 3 first downs in the drive, and would move the chains just one more time for the rest of the night. Richard said his defense did a great job of adjusting to the Maysville attack.
“They did a good job of running the fullback and we didn’t do a great job of tackling,” he said. “That’s something we have to work on this week because we’re playing some backs next week that will go to the goal line. We can’t allow people space to run the football. To our defense’s credit they get in there and scrap and claw and hold them. I think that gave them some confidence and they shut them down.”
The rest of the game belonged to the Bearcats. Orrick grounded out a 16-play drive following Jones’ fumble recovery with Eubank scoring on a 4-yard run, and then adding an 8-yard touchdown run to cap the next possession. Blyth ran the conversion following both scores for a 24-0 Orrick advantage. Blyth then put the Bearcats on the board just before the half with a 13-yard scamper for a 30-0 cushion at the break.
The long delay at the half had no effect on the Bearcats as they held the Wolverines to three and out, and then quickly got the running clock going with a 5-yard run from Blyth with 9:00 left in the third period.
Maysville had four more snaps and turned the ball back to the Bearcats who ran two more plays before the final weather delay and eventual ending of the game.
PHOTO: Orrick defenders Jordyn Butler (53) and Aaron Blyth (23) put the stops on Maysville running back Christian Grebner during Wednesday’s 38-0 Bearcat win Wednesday night in the Class 1 Regional at Excelsior Springs. (Photo by Russ Green/The Daily News.)