In high school football action on Saturday, the Cassville Wildcats advanced to the semi-finals while the Miller Cardinals ended their season in the quarter-final round.
Cassville had a classic battle in taking on Rogersville, which had a record of 11-1 and a #1 state ranking. The defending state champions from Barry County triumphed by using up nine minutes in its final scoring drive to win the game 21-20.
Played in Rogersville, the two opponents exchanged touchdowns through the third quarter. Rogersville scored in the first quarter on a 14-play drive on its first possession. Senior Grant Clouse completed the score on a three-yard play, and the extra point was good to give the hosts a 7-0 lead.
Late in the second quarter, Cassville's drive got close enough for Joseph Gouvion to break over the final yard to score. The extra point left the game tied 7-7 at half-time.
In the third quarter, both teams scored. Cassville struck on its first possession as quarterback Trever Tanner passed to Josh Lewright on a 66-yard play to score. Rogersville responded by going to an aerial game as well. A 54-yard pass play to Clouse enabled the home team to tie up the game 14-14.
On Rogersville's next possession, a 26-yard pass play led to the home team pulling ahead at the beginning of the fourth quarter. The extra point kick was blocked by Cassville's Devin Linenbrink, leaving the score at 20-14.
Cassville then launched a 19-play drive that gained 86 yards, capped by an 11-yard scoring run by Lewright and a point-after by Matt Angel to give Cassville the 21-20 edge. Twice it looked like Cassville's momentum would give out, but the Wildcats gained a first down both times on the fourth down try.
With less than two minutes left in the game, the fired-up Cassville defense held Rogersville out of scoring range as the game ended.
Cassville now advances to the state semi-finals against Kansas City O'Hara, who beat Pleasant Hill 50-49 on a two-point conversion with 35 seconds left in the game.
In Class 1 play, the Miller Cardinals ended their season with a 10-3 record after tangling with unbeaten Valle Catholic from Ste. Genevieve. Valle racked up a 35-0 half-time advantage on the way to a 42-6 victory.
Not even home field advantage could spark the Cardinals against the Valle Warriors' effective passing game and strong defense.
Miller finally scored on its final offensive drive. Quarterback Justin Jack threw a seven-yard pass to Tyler Hinshaw for the score on the last play of the game.
Next Saturday Valle Catholic goes up against unbeaten Tipton for the honor of advancing to the state title game.