Rolla and St. James see seasons come to an end in district opener, Missouri S&T blows by Southwest Baptist University

Bulldogs fall to state-ranked Helias in district opener

The Rolla Bulldogs fell to the Helias Crusaders on Friday in Jefferson City in the first round of the district tournament.

Both teams fought hard on defense during the first quarter as the game remained scoreless.

The second quarter saw the most points in the game as the Crusaders outscored the Bulldogs 24-7. Rolla put the first points on the board after Jack Hounsom ran in a quarterback keeper from 5 yards out to give Rolla their only lead of the contest at 7-0.

The Crusaders connected for a 67-yard pass to tie the game at 7. Rolla would turn the ball over late in its next drive which gave Helias short field. The kicker connected with a 26-yard field goal after the Bulldog defense managed to stop the Crusaders and Helias led 10-7 with 3:33 to go in the first half. The Crusaders took advantage of two more Rolla turnovers to score twice more and Helias went into halftime with a 24-7 lead.

The Crusaders opened the third period with a 35-yard touchdown pass to gain a 31-7 lead with 8:56 left. Rolla did not give up, though, as Dewitt Pritchett scored as time ran out during the third after using most of the remaining eight minutes on the drive to cut the lead to 14-31 to close the period out.

Rolla pulled within reach after recovering a Crusader turnover in the fourth. Pritchett ran in an 88-yard touchdown to bring the score to 21-31 with 8:06 left in the game. Rolla was able to get the ball back but Helias would intercept the ball with a little over two minutes to go and kicked a 34-yard field goal with 13.9 seconds left to close the game out with a 42-21 win.

The Bulldogs end the year with a 4-6 record. They had wins over Glendale, Hillcrest, Parkview and Central. They also fell to several state-ranked teams. Those teams are the Class 5 No. 10 Waynesville Tigers, Class 4 No. 7 Helias Catholic Crusaders, Class 4 No. 2 Camdenton Lakers Class 4 No. 6  Lebanon Yellowjackets and Class 4 No. 4 West Plains Zizzers.

Tigers end season with loss to defending Class 2 state champions Blair Oaks

St. James squared off against the top-seeded Blair Oaks Falcons on Friday night and the season ended with a 7-68 loss. 

The Falcons led 27-0 after the first quarter. They added 28 more in the second to gain a 55-0 lead going into halftime. Blair Oaks added two more touchdowns in the third to lead 68-0.

The Tigers did end the season on a positive note, though, as St. James scored at the end of the game before the clock ran out.

“We had a lot of young guys get valuable experience. Even though we will lose five seniors that started for us we will return 10 players that have starting experience or played major roles on offense and 11 players on defense that saw significant time or started at least several games,” St. James coach Josh Rodriguez said about the experience the kids had this season.

“We won't have a lot of seniors next year, but will have tons of experience in the junior and sophomore classes. Another offseason in the weight room developing will go a long way in being competitive again in 2020.”

Miners sprint away from Bearcats

Missouri S&T hosted the Southwest Baptist Bearcats Saturday on Rolla Youth Football night. The Miners took off running and never stopped as they defeated SBU 62-0 to earn one of the biggest wins in school history.

The Miners came into the game with a two-game losing skid while SBU has been struggling all season. The Miners began the scoring with Deshawn Jones who ran in a 5-yard touchdown at the 11:05 mark in the first quarter.

The Bearcats drove down the field into the Miners’ redzone, but turned the ball over after an interception. Brennan Simms would connect on a pass to Austin Griffin for and 83-yard score on the very next play. The rest of the first period would remain quiet as S&T led 14-0.

The Miners struck early in the second quarter as Simms connected with Aundray Henley for a 48-yard touchdown pass. This was Simms’ second touchdown of the day and the Miners led 21-0 with 14:51 left in the game.

SBU turned the ball over once again in the Miners’ red zone. That again turned into points as Ben Styron connected on a 37-yard field goal to give S&T a 24-point lead. The next possession was the same result as Tershawn Wharton recovered a fumble at the end of a Bearcat run. After that, he took the ball 81 yards to score. That increased the lead to 31, which stood going into halftime.

S&T scored three more touchdowns in the third quarter with a touchdown pass from Simms to Payton McAlister at the beginning of the period. Just three minutes later McAlister would score another touchdown on a 65-yard run. Breon Michel caught Simms’ fourth touchdown pass with 59 seconds left in the period. S&T led 52-0 after three quarters.

Styron kicked a 40-yard FG with 9:44 to go in the game and Quentin Gray topped off an eight-play, 28-yard drive to close the game out with 1:32 to go. 

The Miners put up 585 yards in the win, while holding SBU to only 78. A total of 312 yards was from the air while another 273 came from the ground. 

Simms passed for four touchdowns and threw for 285 yards. Jones, McAlister and Gray all scored from the ground while Griffin, Henely, Michel, and McAlister all caught a pass for a score.

The Miners will travel to St. Charles and face Lindenwood next week on the road.