Scotties given soaking by Harding County 24-0
Harding Co. 8 8 2 6 = 24
Philip 0 0 0 0 = 0
After a drenching rain, Ferguson Field was one big pool of standing water. The Scotties waded into the game undefeated, and ranked number two in Class 9A. Harding County came in ranked number three in Class 9B.
The Ranchers changed the Scotties' tradition of being first on the scoreboard. The third play of the Harding County offense, after a 48-yard run, was a three-yard touchdown dive.
Harding County used its size and blocking ability to dominate both the offense and defense. Rancher linemen made it possible for their backfield to get through the Scottie line, and they forced the Scotties to run sideways instead of up the middle.
"They tore us apart on the line," said Coach Keven Morehart. "We couldn't seem to make solid blocks and they were beating us off the ball."
While Floyd sloshed out 185 of Harding County's 252 rushing yards, Philip's high-energy offense sogged down to 94 total yards.
After scoring off of one of Philip's four turnovers late in the second quarter, the Ranchers led 16-0 at halftime. Harding County lineman Jason Latham poured himself over a Scottie fumble. Two minutes later, fullback Daniel Yonke turned the Scottie slip-up into a Rancher touchdown when he ran in from four yards out with 3:51 left in the first half.
In the third quarter, Harding County pushed Philip back to its own goal line with a 32-yard punt that splashed to a stop at the Scottie one-yard line. Philip's quarterback, Casey Cuny, couldn't get out of the end zone, and the Scotties suffered a safety. Harding County took possession on the 45-yard line and went on a 12-play, 45-yard drive that ended in a Floyd two-yard touchdown run.
Philip tried everything, including its experience from last year's state Class 9A title game, but could not get past the Rancher defense. The Scotties' slight-of-hand with the ball and its up-the-middle running game were to no avail. Philip's passing resulted in three interceptions.
HC - Chason Floyd caught a pass from Charlie Nelson for a 3-yard score. The extra point conversion was good.
HC-Daniel Yonke ran for a 4-yard run. The extra point conversion was good.
HC - Safety.
HC - Floyd 2-yard run; extra point attempt failed.
(Statistics compiled from Philip and Harding
First downs: Philip - 7; HC - 14. Rushes: Philip - 23 for 42 yards; HC - 54 for 252. Passing yards: Philip - 52; HC - 20. Completions: Philip - 4 of 10; HC - 1 of 3. Punts: Philip - 5 for 48 yards; HC 4 for 35 yards. Return yards: Philip - 25; HC - 78. Fumbles: Philip - 4 with 1 lost; HC - 2.
Rushing - Philip: Nathan O'Dea - 5 runs for 26 yards; Casey Cuny - 9 for 22; Zane Fees - 5 for 20; Jake Matthews - 2 for 6; Allen Hauk - 4 carries. HC: Floyd - 35 carries for 185 yards, Yonke - 7 for 27, Trent Turbiville - 3 for 16, Nelson - 4 for 15, Edward Juelfs - 1 for 9.
Passing - Philip, O'Dea 3 completion out of 7 attempts for 11 yards; Hauk 3 completions out of 5 attempts for 41 yards. HC: Nelson 1 out of 3 for 20 yards.
Receiving - Philip: Cuny - 2 for 36; Hauk - 1 for 17; Casey Elshere - 1 for 1; Tate Guptill - 1 pass caught. HC: Travis Davis - 1 for 20 yards.
Tackles - Philip leaders: Lincoln Smith with 6 tackles and 12 assists; O'Dea - 4 and 11; Fees - 4 and 12; Casy Elshere - 4 and 9.
Philip (now 3/1) will be in White River at 6:00 p.m. on Friday, September 29, to face the Tigers.