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Scott City football team drops third consecutive game
By Marty Mishow
Scott City senior tailback Travis Phillips reached a significant milestone Friday night.
But Phillips found it hard to celebrate after the Rams lost 57-12 to visiting Living Word Christian from O'Fallon, Mo.
Phillips fought back tears as he contemplated what might have been the final home game for himself and the rest of Scott City's seniors.
"It doesn't mean much," Phillips said about going over 1,000 yards rushing for the season.
Phillips, after a moment to gather himself, acknowledged that it did mean plenty and he thanked his offensive linemen for the job they have done all season.
"It's real big for me," said the 5-foot-7, 155-pound Phillips, who rushed for more than 800 yards last year before missing the second half of the season with a torn ACL.
Phillips, who entered Friday's game with 928 yards on the ground, gained 110 yards on 28 carries. He scored both Scott City touchdowns, giving him 11 for the season.
While Phillips might not have been impressed by his performance, which came in the Rams' third straight loss, Christian coach Andy Hare certainly was.
"That No. 2 is tough," Hare said about Phillips.
The Rams, who fell to 4-4, have an open date next week before entering the first round of district competition under the state's new playoff format.
Scott City still has a chance to host a first-round district game.
"We're 4-4. We could be worse, but we should be better," Scott City coach Jim May said. "Now we start the single-elimination [district] tournament."
While the Rams are reeling, the Eagles are rolling. They improved to 7-1 in just their third season as a varsity program.
May was disappointed that Scott City did not make things tougher for the visitors.
"They're good, but we should have been more competitive than it was," May said.
The Rams were competitive for most of the first half. They trailed just 14-12 late in the second quarter.
But the Eagles scored 14 points over the final 3 minutes, 21 seconds of the half to go up 28-12 at the break. They rolled in the second half and wound up scoring the game's final 43 points.
"They gave us one heck of a first half," Hare said. "Their coach had them prepared. Their line is tough."
Scott City ultimately had no answer for Christian's dynamic spread offense directed by junior quarterback Jordan Norwine, who completed 19 of 23 passes for 312 yards and five touchdowns. He also ran for two TDs.
Norwine has thrown for nearly 1,800 yards this season.
"He's a very good player," Hare said.
So is Deantrell Prince, a speedy and shifty 6-foot, 190-pound junior who left Scott City defenders grasping for air with a variety of dazzling open-field moves.
"He's probably the best player we've seen all year," Phillips said.
Prince caught five passes for 178 yards and two touchdowns. He has 27 receptions for 640 yards on the season and has scored 18 touchdowns. He also has rushed for more than 500 yards but had no rushing attempts Friday.
Hare said Prince, also a defensive back, has received initial recruiting interest from Division I programs, including Missouri and Illinois.
The Eagles scored on the game's second offensive play when Norwine and Prince hooked up for a 39-yard touchdown. Norwine's conversion run made it 8-0 just 35 seconds into the contest.
But the Rams did not allow Christian to simply roll over them.
Scott City answered with a 58-yard, 16-play drive that ended on a 5-yard run by Phillips. The extra point failed so the Rams trailed 8-6.
Christian needed just four plays to drive 86 yards, the key play being a 53-yard catch-and-run by Prince. A 21-yard touchdown pass to senior Lance Lehmann made it 14-6.
Again the Rams answered, marching 64 yards in 11 plays. Phillips' 11-yard touchdown run made it 14-12 early in the second quarter.
"We were playing right with them," May said.
Scott City had an opportunity to take the lead when the Eagles, who did not punt all night, lost consecutive fumbles.
The second miscue, by Prince on a punt return, set the Rams up at Christian's 42-yard line. They moved inside the 20, but the drive eventually stalled.
Christian responded with a dazzling 39-yard catch-and-run for a touchdown by Prince, making it 20-12 with 3:21 left before halftime.
Scott City had a punt blocked on its ensuing possession, giving the Eagles the ball at the Rams' 18. They scored with 1:47 left to enter the break ahead 28-12.
"It should have been a one-possession game at halftime. We screwed it up," May said.
The second half was no contest after Scott City was intercepted on its first offensive play.
Christian scored after the turnover, then recovered a short kickoff and scored again. Scott City's next offensive play was another interception, and the Eagles again capitalized with a touchdown.
All of a sudden it was 50-12 just 6:30 into the third quarter. The rest of the game was played with a running clock used when a team leads by at least 35 points in the second half.
"We had an utter collapse in the second half, same thing as last week [against Hayti]," May said. "It got away from us."
C -- Deantrell Prince 39 pass from Jordan Norwine (Norwine run), 11:25
SC -- Travis Phillips 5 run (kick failed), 5:11
C -- Lance Lehmann 21 pass from Norwine (pass failed), 3:11
SC -- Phillips 11 run (run failed), 10:51
C -- Prince 39 pass from Norwine (kick failed), 3:21
C -- Norwine 3 run (Lehmann pass from Norwine), 1:47
C -- Jake Hare 4 pass from Norwine (pass failed), 10:34
C -- Norwine 1 run (Lehmann pass from Norwine), 7:50
C -- Lehmann 13 pass from Norwine (Hare run), 5:30
C -- Logan Logsdon 8 run (Jay Billings kick), 5:37
RUSHING -- Christian, Damon Clark 8-37, Norwine 7-12, Logsdon 2-9. Scott City, Phillips 28-110, Zach Haynes 10-32, Gordon Bradley 3-20, Caleb Sykes 2-7, Jon McFall 5-1, team 1-minus 11.
PASSING -- Christian, Norwine 19-23-0-312. Scott City, McFall 5-16-3-58.
RECEIVING -- Christian, Prince 5-178, Hare 5-31, Lehmann 4-62, Karsten Henry 2-30, Clark 2-6, Billings 1-5. Scott City, Ryan Fortner 3-48, Skyler Bewley 1-12, Phillips 1-minus 2.