Mt’neers defeat Wolves, 42-27, as regular season ends

Steve Chapman

Forcing his way past a host of Wolves, Braden Dodson makes a touchdown.(Photo by Steve Chapman)

Despite the attempt at a tackle by a member of the Wolves’ defense, Mt’neer Jake Leeper carries the ball into the end zone.

Mt. Vernon now Big 8 East Champions, look to Hollister Tigers in first round of district play
The football Mt’neers racked up their eighth victory of the season when they defeated the Reeds Spring Wolves in an away game on Friday, Oct. 20. With this win, the Mt’neers are now the Big 8 East Champions for 2023.
The Wolves got on the board first in the game when they scored a touchdown and a successful PAT. However, the Mt’neers responded with their own touchdown near the end of the first quarter when the Mt’neers took the ball to the one-yard line; Braden Dodson took the ball into the end zone to cap off the drive. Landon Popa followed up with a successful PAT to tie the score 7-all.
Near the beginning of the second quarter, the Mt’neers had just kicked the ball to the Wolves in a turnover on downs, but the player receiving the ball fumbled it. A Mt’neer quickly seized possession, putting the Mt’neers back on offense on the Wolves’ five-yard line. Dodson subsequently made another touchdown, and Popa again followed up with a successful PAT, giving the Mt’neers the lead, 14-7. However, the Wolves made two more touchdowns during the quarter and retook the lead by the end of the first half, 21-14.
Near the beginning of the third quarter, Dodson scored a touchdown, and Popa followed up with a PAT, evening the score 21-all. The Wolves went back on offense, but the Mt’neers defense forced them to turnover on downs. Back on offense, the Mt’neers fought their way back to the Wolves three-yard line. Dodson capped off the drive with a touchdown. Popa again made a successful PAT, breaking the tie and putting the Mt’neers back in the lead, 28-14.
Near the end of the third quarter, the Wolves came within three yards of the Mt’neers end zone, but the Mt’neers forced them back and forced another turnover on downs, taking possession of the ball on the Wolves 19-yard line. They then went back on an 81-yard offensive drive, which included a 59-yard play by Gavin Johnston who threw a screen pass to Ryder Dampf, who then ran the ball down the field and put it on the Wolves’ seven-yard line. Dodson capped the drive off with a touchdown and Popa once again kicked the ball over the goal posts to make a successful PAT, making the score 35-21.
The Wolves made one more touchdown near the end of the fourth, but their attempt at a PAT fell short. The Mt’neers made their final touchdown in the last three minutes of the quarter when Johnston completed a touchdown pass to Jake Leeper. Popa followed up for one more PAT, and the game ended a Mt’neers victory, 42-27.
Tom Cox, the Mt’neers head coach, said he was proud of how his team played.
“After a shaky first half, I was very proud of how our young men responded in the second half, he said. “Defensively, we played much better and offensively, we scored every time we had the ball. We outscored the Wolves 28-6 in the final two quarters. …  Reeds Spring is an excellent team, but ultimately, we came out on top and won the Big 8 East Conference Championship with a perfect 6-0 record.”
With the regular season now over, playoffs for the district championship begin this week. The Mt’neers will once again face the Hollister Tigers, a team they defeated on Oct. 6. Despite the earlier victory, Cox said the Mt’neers won’t underestimate their opponent.
“As the No. 2 seed in Class 3 District 6, we now play the No. 7 seed Hollister for the second time in three weeks,” he said. “Hollister possesses great team speed and a stable of good young athletes. With a full season under their belts, the Tigers cannot be taken lightly. We hope to see everyone at Mountaineer Stadium on Friday night for the 7 p.m. kickoff.”


Lawrence County Record

312 S. Hickory St.
Mt. Vernon, MO, 65712


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