The Marceline Tigers traveled to Huntsville for a Lewis and Clark Conference football game on Friday night with the Westran Hornets. While the offense struggled at times, the Black Rage defense and special teams shined on this occasion.
Westran went three-and-out on their opening drive, with Dylon Ewigman earning a tackle for a loss. A third down interception, though, would end the Tigers opening drive. A sack by Cade Ewigman would end the second Westran drive, leading to another three-and-out. But, Marceline would also go three-and-out on their drive as well.
On the second play of the third drive, Westran would break off a 53-yard run for the game’s opening score. The extra point was no good.
Q1 4:00 - Marceline 0 Westran 6
The Tigers would earn their first fresh set of downs on their ensuing drive, after a run by Blake Linebaugh, and a pass from Linebaugh to Duane Avila. Another first down came on a long run from Blake Belzer. But a pair of sacks would end the drive with a turnover on downs.
On the second play of their next drive, the Hornets would score on another long run, this one coming from 60 yards out. The two point conversion pass was good.
Q1 10s - Marceline 0 Westran 14
The teams would exchange possessions for the remainder of the first quarter, and into the second quarter. Westran would score again on their second possession of the second frame. The drive went 21 yards on six plays, with the score coming on a two yard run. The point-after was good.
Q2 5:52 - Marceline 0 Westran 21
The Tigers would mount an impressive drive on their final possession of the first half. Taking the ball at their own six yard line, Marceline would use a pair of runs from Belzer to earn a first down. Two more runs from Belzer would reset the down marker yet again. A pass from Linebaugh to Dan Corbin would bring the Tigers across midfield. But, a late fumble in the Westran red zone would end the drive.
Halftime - Marceline 0 Westran 21
Marceline got started off on the right foot with a 78-yard kickoff return by Jared Best to bring the visiting crowd to their feet. Isaac Smith added the point-after.
Q3 11:47 - Marceline 7 Westran 21
Westran would fumble the ensuing kickoff, with Anthony Steffes recovering it at the Hornets 34 yard line. But, the Tigers would go three-and-out on the possession.
Westran would drive from their own 32 yard line, using 14 plays to drive the field and score. The touchdown came on a six-yard run. The point-after was good.
Page 2 of 2 - Q3 4:02 - Marceline 7 Westran 28
In a bit of deja-vu, the Tigers would again return the ensuing kickoff for a touchdown. This time, it was Linebaugh who traveled 73-yards for the score. Smith added the point-after.
Q3 3:48 - Marceline 14 Westran 28
Westran would embark on a long drive, nearly ending the third frame. The drive would feature stops for a loss by Bryce Jobson, Avila, Jesse Smith; and a pass deflection by Jobson to force the turnover on downs.
A pass from Linebaugh to Best would start the fourth quarter with a first down for the Tigers. But an interception would end the drive a few plays later.
Westran would score on their first possession of the fourth quarter. They would travel 71 yards on 11plays, with the score coming on a 23-yard pass. The point-after was good.
Q4 5:32 - Marceline 14 Westran 35
The Tigers would manage two more drives in the game, even reaching inside the five yard line of the Hornets. But the team would not find the end zone before the game’s end.
Final - Marceline 14 Westran 35
“We need to move the football better,” said Head Coach Paul Thomas. “Our kids fought hard until the end, but we can’t leave our defense on the field that much. When we did move the ball well, we shot ourselves in the foot. When we learn to move the ball on offense, we will be a good football team.”