November 9, 2006

Victory Eludes Tigers In Final Minutes of Season Finale

The Scotland County football team saw its chance to close out the 2006 season on a high note disappear in the season finaleís final five minutes as Marceline scored twice to break a 12-12 tie and send the Tigers to a 25-12 defeat.

Marceline struggled with turnovers in the first half but Scotland County was unable to take advantage of the miscues. Grant Bloome intercepted a Matt Smith pass on the gameís opening possession. But SCR-I went three and out on defense.

Derrick Willis returned the punt 42 yards for a touchdown. The Tigers stopped the two-point conversion to trail 6-0 with 7:34 to play in the first period.

The Tigers mounted their first drive of the contest and appeared poised to erase the deficit before the drive stalled at the 20-yard line and SCR-I turned the ball over on downs.

The two teams traded punts to start the second period before Marcelineís Kaleb Lake picked off a Marcus Shalley pass and returned it 59-yards for an apparent TD. But Marceline was flagged for an illegal block during the return that nullified the score.

That proved costly as the visitors turned the ball over on a fumble that was pounced on by Grant Blomme.

Eric Glass electrified the Tigers fans with a 17-yard run to start the possession but the drive ran out of gas and SCR-I again turned the ball over on downs.

The next couple of minutes looked like a replay as Blomme came up with his second fumble recovery of the contest. SCR-I then picked up a couple first downs, including a good gain by Glass. But the Tigers turned the ball over on downs with 6:44 remaining in the first half.

Scotland County gained the momentum heading into the locker room. After the defense forced a Marceline punt, the offense took over and marched down the field. Shalley capped off the drive with a 10-yard touchdown run. The PAT kick was no good, leaving the score knotted at 6-6 with 1:17 left in the first half.

That was nearly enough time for Marceline to drive the length of the field. But Grant Blomme made his second interception of the game at the two-yard line to end the threat.

The Tigers opened the third period with a solid drive. Shalley found Justin Williams on a 48-yard pass play that immediately put SCR-I in scoring position. A switch to a traditional two-back offense paid dividends as Bryce Blomme dove into the end zone on a two-yard run with 8:15 on the clock to put the home team ahead 12-6.

Marceline quickly answered as Lake capped off a quick drive with a touchdown run. SCR-I stopped the two-point conversion to keep the game tied at 12-12 with 4:20 to go in the third quarter.

Scotland County continued a solid second half on offense. Shalley picked up key yards on a quarterback draw. He then hit Grant Blomme on a pass play to move the chains again. A quick pitch to Bryce Blomme put the ball in the red zone. But the drive ended as SCR-I turned the ball over on a fumble with 11:47 to play in the final period.

The Tigersí defense forced a Marceline punt with 7:40 to play in the game. But another turnover cost SCR-I as Marceline made its second interception of the game.

This time the visitors took advantage of the turnover. Lake scored his second touchdown run of the game with 4:03 to play in the contest.

Trailing 18-12 SCR-I went to the two-minute offense but was unable to move into scoring position in the gameís final minutes.

Marceline took over on downs with 1:31 left to play and Willis nailed the door shut with a 25-yard TD run. The PAT kick made the final score 25-12.

Shalley led a solid defensive team effort with 15 tackles. Bryce Blomme made 11 stops while Casey Parrish added nine tackles. Grant Blomme had seven stops and was responsible for four Marceline turnovers with two fumble recoveries and two interceptions.

The SCR-I offense made 12 first downs. Shalley carried the ball 15 times for 69 yards. Bryce Blomme had 49 yards on 10 attempts while Glass finished with 39 yards on four attempts. Shalley completed 10 of 27 passes for 115 yards and was intercepted twice.

Grant Blomme caught four passes for 53 yards. Justin Williams made four grabs for 61 yards while Bryce Blomme and Glass each made one catch.

Lake led the Marceline ground attack with 196 yards on 27 carries. Willis had 68 yards on eight attempts. Smith completed one of seven passes and was picked off twice.

The Tigers ended the season with a 2-8 record.

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