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Indians reach Class 1 semis
St. Vincent recorded a 19-0 road victory over Salisbury in the quarterfinals.
SALISBURY, Mo. -- St. Vincent did just about anything it wanted to do Monday night in a 19-0 victory against Salisbury in a Class 1 state quarterfinal game.
The Indians defense pitched the shutout, letting Salisbury get no closer than 30 yards from the end zone all night.
The St. Vincent running backs mauled through the Panthers defense for 266 yards, led by Waylon Richardet's 107 yards on 15 carries.
"We felt the game was going to be won in the offensive and defensive lines," St. Vincent coach Keith Winkler said. "And we felt we matched up pretty well."
By early in the second half, the Indians (11-1) turned a battle with a previously undefeated team into a tuneup for the state semifinal game.
They play Saturday -- on the road again -- against defending state champion Marionville (11-1), a 35-12 winner against Greenfield on Monday.
Salisbury (11-1) fell behind 9-0 in a penalty-free first half and never got a running game moving against St. Vincent's defensive front.
On a third-and-inches at its own 20 early in the third period, the Panthers opted for a sweep that resulted in a 2-yard loss.
"That was huge," Winkler said. "We stacked a lot of people in the box."
Following the punt, St. Vincent took possession at its own 48-yard line and marched inside the Salisbury 10 before settling for a 25-yard field goal by Kyle Kline, his second of the night.
The exchange was typical of the evening.
"They're a good team," Winkler said of Salisbury. "I think our kids were just mentally focused and prepared to play."
St. Vincent put the game out of reach when Kline intercepted a pass at the Indians' 37. The Indians then marched 63 yards for a score with Kline running 32 yards to cap the drive. His conversion kick made the score 19-0 with 7:44 to play.
"Kyle made some big hits, and he made some big kicks for us," Winkler said. "He doesn't run the ball as much as he did last year because we have some other backs that can carry it, and that makes him fresh for defense."
Those other backs had a lot of work, as quarterback Alex Armbruster passed just five times -- completing three for 61 yards.
Including Richardet and Kline, five backs each contributed more than 30 yards to the attack.
"When you have [Dustin] Winkler and [Anthony] Brown and Kline, they're good backs," Winkler said. "Waylon is big and hard to bring down. He'll lower the shoulder on you. And Luke Guyot is a strong runner also who is hard to bring down and is a great lead blocker."
The wealth of running backs St. Vincent proved too much for Salisbury.
The Panthers had to shuck their running game after that third-quarter possession was stopped inside their own 20, and they subsequently fell behind 12-0. That and the fact the running game -- and most of the other offense -- was being bottled up by Brian Buchheit and Patrick Siegmund, among others.
Salisbury's best offense was long passing plays, but a sustained drive was not in the cards.
That tone was set early in the game.
St. Vincent turned a first-quarter battle for field position into a touchdown on the first drive of the second quarter. The Indians marched 62 yards on eight plays -- all runs with four different backs contributing. Waylon Richardet rumbled 25 yards for the touchdown. Kline's extra point kick was blocked and St. Vincent led 6-0 with 8:16 to play in the half.
Salisbury marched to St. Vincent's 43-yard-line on the ensuing drive, but a pass on third-and-11 was broken up by Guyot.
Following an 11-yard punt to St. Vincent's 33, the Indians put together another impressive drive. After marching to the Panthers' 5 on nine plays, the Indians had to settle for a 22-yard field goal by Kline with 52.5 seconds remaining in the half.
St. Vincent, which opened the playoffs with a win at South Shelby before making the five-hour trip to Salisbury, now travels even farther for the state semifinal game.
"As long as we keep winning," Winkler said.