Mustangs Tackle Marshfield
FOR THE FIRST TIME IN 47 YEARS, MUSTANGS WIN FIRST TWO GAMES
The year was 1970. The number one song was “Bridge Over Troubled Waters” by Simon and Garfunkel. The highest grossing movie was “Love Story.” The top TV show was “Marcus Welby, M.D.” Also in 1970, the McDonald County High School football team started the season by winning its first two games. Not since that year — until McDonald County’s 14-7 win over Marshfield on Friday night at MCHS — had another Mustangs team won its first two games of the season.
The year was 1970. The number one song was “Bridge Over Troubled Waters” by Simon and Garfunkel. The highest grossing movie was “Love Story.” The top TV show was “Marcus Welby, M.D.”
Also in 1970, the McDonald County High School football team started the season by winning its first two games.
Not since that year — until McDonald County’s 14-7 win over Marshfield on Friday night at MCHS — had another Mustangs team won its first two games of the season.
McDonald County used a similar formula of a stout defense and a power running game that
“I love to see all those Mustang hats flying to the ball. It is fun to watch from the sideline how our kids run to the ball. If one kid does miss a tackle, there are two or three others to clean it up. You have to gang tackle and our kids are doing that really well.”
highlighted the Mustangs’ opening week win over Salem. But the Mustangs had to overcome some fourth-quarter adversity after making several mistakes in the final nine minutes of the game.
“First of all, the defense played lights out,” said coach Kellen Hoover. “Two weeks in a row they have showed up and played extremely well the entire game. We are going to continue to lean on them because I think winning football is great defense and being able to run the football. That’s what we are trying to get to. I am not saying we are perfect at it yet. It is a process that we are slowly trying to implement. The kids are buying into how we want to play and are doing a great job with it.”
McDonald County held Marshfield to 193 total yards (35 in the first half), including just 68 on the ground.
“I love to see all those Mustang hats flying to the ball,” Hoover said. “It is fun to watch from the sideline how our kids run to the ball. If one kid does miss a tackle, there are two or three others to clean it up. You have to gang tackle and our kids are doing that really well.”
The teams traded punts for all of the first quarter and to start the second before McDonald County opened the scoring with a 10-play, 53-yard drive capped by Isrrael De Santiago’s fiveyard touchdown run. Dylan Allison booted the first of his two PATs to give McDonald County a 7-0 lead with 4:55 left in the first half.
The Mustangs’ second touchdown came just a minute and 13 seconds later, when De Santiago scored from eight yards out.
The short scoring drive was set up by David Roark interception of a ball tipped by Cole DelosSantos that gave McDonald County the ball on the Blue Jays 19-yard line.
De Santiago finished with 113 yards on 25 carries while Peyton Barton added 48
— Kellen Hoover
Mustangs Football Coach
yards on nine carries, Oakley Roessler had 43 yards on 10 carries and Timber Teague had eight yards on six carries as the Mustangs finished with 212 yards on the ground.
“We are trying to stick with what we are good at on offense,” Hoover said. “We spread it out a little bit more tonight and Peyton did a good job of reading the defense. He kept the ball when the defense dictated and picked up some good yards. When push comes to shove, we are going to turn around and hand it to Izzy (De Santiago) or Oakley (Roessler) and say ‘we are going to lean on you.’”
Marshfield took advantage of a pass-interference penalty to put together its best drive so far to start the second half.
The Blue Jays started on their own 29-yard line after an interception and moved to the McDonald County 31 before the Mustangs held on fourth and six with 4:16 left in the third quarter.
McDonald County then launched what appeared to be a clinching drive, using almost eight minutes and 16 plays to move the ball to the Marshfield 12-yard line. But a botched exchange led to a Blue Jays fumble recovery with 8:43 left in the game.
It took the Blue Jays just six plays to march 88 yards, capped by a 14-yard touchdown run by Jason Whittington, to cut the lead to 14-7. A roughing-the-passer penalty and a personal foul against the Mustangs accounted for 30 of those yards.
But the Mustangs defense answered the call for the rest of game, including after McDonald County fumbled on its first play from scrimmage following Marshfield’s touchdown.
Helped out by a pair of holding penalties, the Mustangs defense pushed the Blue Jays back from midfield to the McDonald County 11-yard line before the Mustangs took over on their own 43-yard line.
McDonald County appeared to have picked up a first down on fourth and one in an attempt to run out the clock, but an illegal=procedure penalty forced the punt. Barton’s 46-yard effort pinned Marshfield back to their own seven-yard line with 3:04 left in the game.
The Blue Jays were able to move into Mustangs territory in the final minute, aided by a 42-yard pass play on fourth and 20 with 1:13 left, but four consecutive incomplete passes gave the ball back to McDonald County with 28 seconds left.
“There were three or four plays you can look back at and say ‘what happened there,’ but I think in a couple cases it was kids trying to do too much,” Hoover said. “I think they were trying to make that extra play when we really just need to do our jobs. If we can just matriculate the ball down the field then we put together a winning drive. Instead we tried to do too much and it cost us a few times. We had to lean on our defense and what was cool about it was a couple of the kids who made mistakes had to turn around and play defense. I was really proud of how they reacted. Their heads were up and the kids around them were picking them up and telling them ‘we’re fine — next play’ and that was cool to see them come together after those plays.”
DelosSantos finished with 10 tackles and De Santiago had nine and David Roark seven to lead the tackle charts. Elliott Wolfe and Trey Black both had two quarterback hurries. Caleb Curtis, Kennedy Hodson and Roessler had three pass deflections.
Barton threw for 41 yards on four-of-11 accuracy. DelosSantos caught two passes for 23 yards while Micah Burkholder and Roessler both had one catch for nine yards.
The Mustangs travel to Seneca on Friday night in a battle of unbeaten teams in both teams’ Big 8 Conference openers. Kickoff is set for 7 p.m.
McDonald County’s Cole DelosSantos (12) and Isrrael De Santiago team up to bring down Marshfield’s Brock Utecht for a loss during the Mustangs 14-7 win on Aug. 25 at MCHS.