Led by the running of Dillan Webb, the host Seneca Indians brought a fine season for the Monett Cubs to a close last night with a 28-6 win in a Class 3A District 12 and Big 8 Conference football game.
In going to 7-3 overall, 6-1 in the league and 2-1 in the district, Seneca claimed the district runner-up position and will travel to Springfield Catholic on Wednesday for a state playoff game. Monett finished the year with an 8-2 record, 5-2 in the conference and 1-2 in the district.
Game statistics showed Seneca's superiority on the wet and muddy night. The Indians had 302 total yards compared to 163 for Monett, 15 first downs to nine, and ran 64 plays compared to 40.
Monett was unable to generate any offensive movement following the kickoff to start the game, and had to punt. The Indians then mounted an opening drive for a score.
Primarily behind the running of Webb, the Indians went 57 yards in nine plays to score. The touchdown came on a quarterback sneak by Jacob Rhoades from one-yard out. The extra point failed, leaving Seneca ahead 6-0 with 6:03 left in the first quarter.
Defense took over for the rest of the first period as both teams had to punt.
Early in the second quarter, the ball exchanged hands again. The Cubs lost a fumble. Seneca was forced to punt due to Monett's defensive play of Ethan Davis, Marcus Enloe, Matt Schiffner, Kyle Fellwock, Obermann and Bounous.
Monett finally got its offense going, utilizing a passing attack, and headed for the tying score.
Quarterback Tyler Green passed 18 yard to Chris Eimer, 17 yards to Brandon Marion and 25 yards to Ryan Cody, to set up the Cubs with a first and goal at the nine.
Three plays later, Green hooked up with Eimer with a five-yard touchdown pass. The extra point was unsuccessful and the game was deadlocked 6-6 with 5:58 left until intermission.
Following the ensuing kickoff, Seneca retaliated. The Indians went 66 yards in nine plays to take the lead for good. The touchdown came on a halfback pass from Webb to Nick Chastain covering 20 yards. Rhoades passed to Chastain for the two-point conversion to make the score 14-6 with 1:23 remaining until halftime.
Monett wasted opportunities at the end of the half and early in the second half that could have dramatically changed the course of the game.
With time winding down in the first half, the Cubs got excellent line play from Ryne Johnson, Jeff Craft, Beau Bounous and Jason Obermann to threaten.
Runningback Christian Privett gained 16 yards, and a screen pass from Green to Privett netted 35 yards to the 12-yard line. A pass interference call against Seneca moved the ball to the six but a pass interception by the Indians with six seconds to go until intermission ended the scoring chance.
Six plays after the start of the third quarter, the visitors had another good chance to score when Spenser Witt picked off a Seneca aerial and returned the ball to the 18-yard line. However, the Cubs were not able to advance the ball any further and turned the ball over on downs.
Webb taking over
The Indians, with Webb taking over, took control of the game. Seneca marched 80 yards in 15 plays to score. During the drive, Webb carried the ball 13 times on the march and got the final yard for a touchdown. The try for the two-point conversion failed to leave the score 28-6 in Seneca's favor with six seconds to go in the third quarter.
Monett was quickly forced to punt early in the final stanza, and the Indians, behind Webb, added one more score. The TD came on a six-yard run by Webb. The two-point conversion by Rhoades made the final score 28-6 with 4:31 left in the game.
Webb was the leading ball carrier in the contest with 178 yards on 38 rushes. Green completed eight passes for the Cubs for 121 yards.
Touchdowns: Monett--Eimer. Seneca--Chastain, Rhoades, Webb 2. Two-Point Conversions: Seneca--Chastain, Rhoades.