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Rogers stops Bulldogs

Rogers’ Pirates scored on three of their first four possessions on the strength of an unrelenting ground attack and went on to defeat Priceville’s Bulldogs 28-12 in a Class 4A region match up at Bulldogs Stadium Friday night.

Down 28-0 in the fourth quarter, the scrappy Bulldogs (1-1) put up two scores in the final five minutes of the game on the strength of freshman quarterback Kaleb Barker’s arm.

“They have a quality team and they showed it in the first half by hitting us in the teeth,” said Priceville head coach Dirk Strunk. “But I was proud of our kids for hanging in there and making it a game at the end.

“Our defense came out soft and they made us pay,” he added. “But we got it turned around in the second half by forcing a couple of fumbles. Our young receivers also dropped seven or eight balls that killed scoring opportunities, but they came on late and made some plays that resulted in scores.”

He also pointed out that not having receiver/kicker Nick Bell on the field hurt the Bulldogs’ offense. He was injured in a pre-game practice.

Rogers demonstrated the power of its running attack by marching 82 yards on four plays the first time it had the ball. Heath Mann capped the drive by scoring from 16 yards out with 5:19 left in the first period. Jacob Duncan booted the extra point to make the score 7-0.

A Bulldog fumble on their own 25-yard line set up the next Pirate score. Raliegh Killen bulled his way into the end zone from five yards out and Duncan converted the extra point to make the score 14-0 with 3:06 left in the first period.

The Pirates scored again with 9:15 remaining in the second quarter on a six-yard run by Killen. Duncan tacked on the extra point to give his team a 21-0 lead.

Priceville reached Rogers’ 29-yard line midway through the second period after Barker and Tyler Charest hooked up on a 23-yard pass play. The scoring threat ended on an incomplete pass.

The visitors logged their fourth and final score on a 68-yard run by Kyle McCombs with 10:26 left in the third period. Duncan kicked his fourth straight extra point to give his team a 28-0 edge.

Pricevile’s offense dominated the fourth quarter after the defense came up with two Rogers fumbles, which were recovered by Zac Smith and Hunter Huckaby.

The first turnover gave the Bulldogs possession in the red zone at the 14-yard line, but the opportunity fizzled out after a fourth down pass was dropped in the end zone.

The second fumble set up the Bulldogs for their first scoring drive. They marched 58 yards in 15 plays with Charest scoring on a 13-yard pass from Barker. The extra point kick by Peyton Morris was blocked, leaving the score at 28-6 with 4:15 left in the game.

Big plays leading to the TD were a 20-yard pass from Barker to Trey Jones and four Barker runs that netted 18 yards.

The Bulldogs scored again on a 13-yard pass from Barker to Charest with 11 seconds left, capping a 60-yard drive in four plays.

Barker was the workhorse for Priceville’s offense. He completed 14 of 27 passes for 128 yards and two touchdowns and ran for 54 net yards on 16 carries. Wide receiver Charest caught four passes for 57 yards and two touchdowns.

A road clash with Brooks at 7 p.m. on Friday is in store for the Bulldogs.

“We have another big challenge ahead,” said Strunk. “We expect our kids to come out and work hard next week to get better.”

 

Game Stats

Priceville Rogers

First downs 11 12

Yards rushing 56 302

Yards passing 128 64

Passes A/C/I 27-12-0 10-6-0

Fumbles lost 1 3

Punts/avg. 3-32 2-16

Yards penalized 15 70

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