St. James to visit St. Clair, Rolla hosts Waynesville and Missouri S&T to host Quincy

St. James Tigers 0-5 at St. Clair Bulldogs 5-0

The Tigers have had a rough season this year and are looking for their first win, but there have been glimmers of hope after falling in a low-scoring game to the Owensville Dutchmen and holding the Cuba Wildcats to a low score for most of the night.

“We welcomed the return of Gavin Caldwell from an offseason injury to his leg,” St. James coach Josh Rodriguez said, adding to that hope.

“We have to do a better job of taking care of the ball. Turnovers cost us last week's game.”

The grind to improve is always in motion.

“We will continue to evaluate personnel and make necessary adjustments based on performance and who we play next week,” the coach said.

This week, St. James will be traveling to St. Clair for a conference game against the undefeated Bulldogs. All of the Bulldogs games have been close with their biggest win this season coming last week by 20 points. The average win for the St. Clair team this season is 11.6 points with two of those games being won by less than a touchdown.

The Tigers have faced some tough teams early already this season with the opponents having an average of 3.3 wins so far through the first five games. If there is a silver lining, their last two games have been their best with the Tigers falling by 17 to Cuba and Owensville.

St. Clair is the top seed in the Class 3 District 2 standings, just above the 3-1 Roosevelt Roughriders from St. Louis and St. Francis Borgia Knights from Washington. The Tigers remain the eighth seed in the Class 3 District 5 bracket and will most likely take on the defending Class 2 state champion Blair Oaks Falcons from the Jefferson City area in the first round on the road.

Rodriquez said that every week is important to district standings. This week is no different.

“St. Clair is the favorite right now to win the conference so there are big implications for them every week,” he said. “St. Clair is a tough place to play so we will have to be mentally focused.”

The Tigers have made a few adjustments from last week and time will tell if they can turn the corner.

“We have to take care of the ball and make the most of scoring opportunities,” Rodriguez noted.

Rolla Bulldogs 3-2 vs. Waynesville Tigers 3-2

The Bulldogs and the Tigers have deep roots that go back to the first Waynesville game ever when both teams faced off at the (then) new Waynesville High School in 1959.

“The Rolla/Waynesville game is one that brings a lot of historical context. The kids know each other from playing travel ball together over the years, and most of the families have known each other for a long time,” Waynesville coach Joe Haynes said of the rivalry. “It should be a fun night of football for all who attend.”

The Tigers will visit Rolla and both teams have a 3-2 record. The Bulldogs are 2-1 in the last three games with their last resulting in a loss to Kickapoo 7-33. Their previous two wins over Parkview and Hillcrest came with a combined score of 69-20.

Waynesville, on the other hand, is fresh off a record-setting game against Springfield Central where the Tigers set or tied 11 school or individual records in the 77-0 rout for Homecoming last week. They are also 2-1 with the other win coming against Hillcrest. Their lone loss came against Lebanon in a 0-35 shutout at home in week three.

“I feel our defensive line and inside linebackers will have to have monster performances to give us a great chance at being successful,” Haynes said about the upcoming matchup.

Both teams are tied in the middle of the pack in the Ozark Conference and each need a win to keep up for a top four finish.

Rolla has defeated Waynesville the last four years with the last twowins resulting in less than a touchdown.

“A solid performance from our defense stopping the run game is going to be a major factor in our success Friday night. Our offensive unit will need to maintain possessions and score touchdowns consistently in order to give our defense a cushion,” Haynes pointed out.

Rolla continues to sit in the fifth spot of the Class 4 District 5 Tournament. The Bulldogs have another advantage this week, though, as they will have bonus points since Waynesville is a Class 5 school. The top four seeds combined have an 18-2 record this season. The Bulldogs would be in Washington for the first round of the district playoffs if district ended right now.

Waynesville the top seed in the Class 5 District 5 standings. The Tigers have already defeated two of their district rivals and are favorites in the district. Their first game of the playoffs if the season ended now would be a semifinal game hosting Springfield Central again.

The game will begin at 7 p.m. Friday with Homecoming events during the night.

Missouri S&T Miners vs. 3-1 Quincy Illinois 2-2

The Miners are looking for their fourth win in a row after standout and record-breaking performances from Deshawn Jones and Brennan Simms in the last few weeks.

Josh Brown is the leader for S&T in catches with 21 on the season for 386 yards so far. There are 11 Miners who have caught the ball this season for the high-flying offense.

With Missouri S&T topping 35 points in every game this season, the Miners are a tough train to stop once it begins to roll. The Quincy Hawks began with a 38-8 win over Central State and 24-16 win against Kentucky Wesleyan, but has only managed a total of 21 points in their last two games to Wayne State and Truman State while their opponents have scored 96 points against them in those same games.

The game will begin at 1 p.m. on Saturday and will have Alumni and Homecoming events surrounding the game.