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Spartans face talented Huskers as MRVC East play begins

The Spartan defense closes in on a KC Central running back during last week’s win over the Eagles. The defense faces a bigger challenge Friday night as the Spartans host Higginsville for Homecoming and the 2013 MRVC East opener. (Photo by Russ Green/Richmond News.)

The Spartan defense closes in on a KC Central running back during last week’s win over the Eagles. The defense faces a bigger challenge Friday night as the Spartans host Higginsville for Homecoming and the 2013 MRVC East opener. (Photo by Russ Green/Richmond News.)

By Russ Green-Sports Editor

Richmond coach Rob Bowers could describe his team’s play through the first four games of the season as inconsistent. Richmond takes a 3-1 record into the beginning of MRVC East play Friday night and the Spartans will need their most consistent effort to date as they host Higginsville for Homecoming at Tom Adams Field.

The Huskers, ranked No. 8 in the latest Class 2 media poll, is 4-0 after last week’s 46-7 win at Trenton. The Spartans’ only loss this season came in the second week – a 42-13 decision at Lawson. Richmond rolled 40-0 at KC Central last week despite being a little inconsistent, especially in the second quarter.

“We do real well at times and then we go through periods where we struggle,” Bowers said. “It can be week to week, or series to series, or play to play. You don’t want that to be the norm, but that’s the way it is a lot of the times this year.”

Bowers said a lot of inconsistent play is due to his team’s inexperience.

“When we’re playing well, we play pretty well,” he said. “When we play poorly, its pretty poor. Against good teams, you can’t have those down times. You have to play well the whole game and that is our goal – to put a whole game together.”

A whole game will be needed Friday in facing the Huskers – are favorite to repeat as league champions. The Huskers have shown a balanced offensive attack over the first four games that includes a 16-point win at Concordia; a 15-0 shutout over Boonville and a 51-point victory over El Dorado Springs. Higginsville has averaged 241 rushing yards a game, and 153 more through the air each week.

“They have some good athletes with some speed who can run and catch,” Bowers said. “They can run when they’ve got the ball and they can run after the catch the ball. The running backs are quick and elusive and do a good job when they have the ball.”

Marcus Elmore leads the Husker ground attack with 245 yards on 43 carries with a pair of touchdowns, while junior quarterback Matt Gibson has picked up 224 yards on 232 carries.

Colton Williams has a pair of touchdowns and is averaging 6.7 yards per carry on 22 attempts, with Christian Turner averaging just under 6 yards a carry on 10 attempts. Ian Gash, who missed two games with in injury, has just 16 carries, but has picked up 78 yards.

 The complete story is in the Thursday, Sept. 26, 2013 Richmond News.

Click here for our E-edition and read the rest of the story.

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