Opportunistic Tigers create turnovers, score touchdowns
By Jay Davis
With Austin Borah out with an ankle sprain, the Tigers used the running of Mason Keller and an opportunistic defense to defeat Crow Creek 52-0 in Stephan on Friday.
“I was happy with the way they were ready to play,” said coach Nathan Lamb. “They played with emotion and that was good.”
The Tiger defense set up the offense all game long. The Tigers forced a three-and-out on Crow Creek’s first possession and then scored in three plays. Keller hit Jason Hill for 46 yards. Two plays later, Conner Stoick carried the ball into the end zone to give the Tigers a 7-0 lead.
On Crow Creeks’ first play, Ethan Kettering picked off a pass.
Keller topped the 36-yard drive with a one-yard touchdown.
On Crow Creeks’ first play, Jordan Feist recovered a fumble.
Twenty-four seconds after his first touchdown, Keller scored from 22 yards out to make it 21-0.
Crow Creek picked up its initial first down on its next possession, but punted four plays later.
One play later, Keller was in the end zone after romping 57 yards down the sideline. The Tiger lead was 27-0 with 38 seconds left in the opening stanza.
The rain started coming down harder in the second quarter, but that did not stop the Tiger defense from pouring down on the Chieftains.
Four plays into the quarter, Stoick picked off an interception, which was followed by the Tigers’ only possession in which they failed to score.
After the Tigers turned the ball over on downs, Keller had a sequence like none other seen before. Keller had interceptions on the next three Crow Creek snaps from center.
Keller took the first interception back to the one-yard line. He scored his fourth touchdown on the next play. He housed the second interception, returning it 38 yards to the end zone. The third interception set up Feist for a 24-yard touchdown run.
The interception streak stopped, but the turnovers did not. On Crow Creek’s next possession, Chase Schoenhard scooped up a fumble and rumbled 16 yards to the end zone to give the Tigers a 52-0 lead.
With five Crow Creek turnovers in six offense offensive plays, the Tigers scored four touchdowns in three minutes and 23 seconds.
Lamb was pleased with the way his defense took advantage of the Crow Creek mistakes, but was also pleased that his Tigers hung onto the ball.
“We never had a ball hit the ground in the rain,” said Lamb.”
Keller finished the game with 186 yards rushing on just 15 carries. The Tigers ran just 27 offensive plays in the two-quarter game.
The Tigers will shoot for a second straight win in Chamberlain on Friday.
The Cubs are 1-3 on the season. Their only win came in a 20-14 victory over Cheyenne-Eagle Butte.
“Chamberlain has good size and they have some speed,” said Lamb.
But more important is how well the Tigers play a second straight week on the road.
“We’re getting better,” said Lamb. “This week will tell us more.”
Borah put away his crutches, but how he progresses this week will determine if he suits up for the Chamberlain game. Lamb said it is more important to have Borah healthy for the Winner and St. Thomas More games than it is to push him back too soon for Friday’s game.
The Tigers have been on the winning side 23 times in 27 games against the Cubs. The teams first met in 1972 when the Tigers won a 22-12 game. The Tigers won the first 13 games in the series. Recent games have also gone the Tigers’ way as Mobridge-Pollock has a six-game winning streak going against the Cubs.
Mobridge-Pollock (1-3) 27 25- 52
Crow Creek (2-3) 0 0- 0
MP- Conner Stoick 5 run (Chase Schoenhard kick)
MP- Mason Keller 1 run (Schoenhard kick)
MP- Keller 22 run (Schoenhard kick)
MP- Keller 57 run (kick failed)
MP- Keller 1 run (kick failed)
MP- Keller 38 interception return (Schoenhard kick)
MP- Jordan Feist 24 run (kick failed)
MP- Schoenhard 16 fumble return (kick failed)
Mobridge-Pollock: Rushing 23-221 (Keller 15-186, Feist 2-27, Stoick 5-5, Noah Chase 1-3); Passing (Keller 1-4-0-46); Receiving (Jason Hill 1-46); 9 first downs; 0 turnovers. Defense: Ethan Kettering 5 tackles, interception, Keller 2 tackles, 3 interceptions, David Jensen 2.5, tackles, Schoenhard fumble recovery, Stoick interception, Feist fumble recovery.
Crow Creek: Rushing 16- (-7) (Anthony Gorneau 2-15, Chance Sazue 2-9, Hunter Big Eagle 8-2, Theron Big Eagle 1-(-8), Devon Grant 1-(-25); Passing 3-14-5-19 (T. Big Eagle 3-12-4-19); Receiving (Grant 2-13); 6 first downs; 7 turnovers.