Big play costly to Wildcats
By Travis McConnell
The Hayes Center Cardinals showed why they are the big favorites to win the district, as they used big plays on offense and defense to defeat the Wallace Wildcats 70-14.
Adam Lawson turned in the first big defensive play on Wallace’s first possession of the game when he picked up an errant option pitch at the Wildcat three yard line and took it into the end zone. With the successful point after kick the Cardinals had an early 7-0 lead.
The Wildcats did have success moving the ball against the Cardinals, as they only had two possessions the entire game where they failed to pick up at least one first down. However, the Hayes Center defense bent but never broke.
After holding the Wildcats on downs at their own 21, Keefer Messersmith used a big offensive play, a 53 yard run to extend the Cardinal lead to 14-0.
The Wildcats answered following a 39 yard kick return by Sean May. The Wildcats used 12 plays, mostly runs by May and Shawn Christensen to cut the lead to 14-6 with 2:24 to play in the first quarter.
Hayes Center took little time to get the momentum back though, as Brady Rosno scored from 39 yards out on Hayes Center’s first play of the drive to extend the lead to 21-6 at the end of the first quarter.
Messersmith scored touchdowns on Hayes Center’s next two possessions on runs of 27 yards and five yards respectively, to make the score 35-6 with 6:23 to play in the first half.
After a 10 play Wallace drive that ended with an incomplete pass at the Hayes Center 38, the Cardinals capped the first half scoring with a 42 yard touchdown pass from Messersmith to Rosno that made the score 42-6 at the half.
Messersmith and Tyler Clifford each scored touchdowns in the third quarter as Hayes Center took a 55-6 lead into the final quarter.
Rosno turned in the second big defensive play of the game when he intercepted a Wildcat pass at his own 21 yard line and returned it 59 yards for a touchdown.
Casey Wickizer scored Hayes Center’s final touchdown with 7:06 to play in the game.
The final touchdown of the game came on a 10 yard run by Christensen on a 65-yard drive to the end zone that took six plays. May added the two point conversion.
May led the Wildcats with 125 yards rushing on 22 carries. Christensen added 69 yards on 21 carries.
The Wildcats will look for their first win of the season this Friday as they host the 1-3 Paxton Tigers. Kickoff is scheduled for 7:30.