Final Four Minutes Cost Mustangs
Hollister scored two touchdowns in the final four minutes of the game, including a 67yard touchdown pass with 58 seconds left, to beat McDonald County 35-28 on Sept. 14 at Hollister High School.
Hollister scored two touchdowns in the final four minutes of the game, including a 67-yard touchdown pass with 58 seconds left, to beat McDonald County 35-28 on Sept. 14 at Hollister High School.
Hollister’s late flurry helped the Tigers overcome another incredible performance by McDonald County running back Oakley Roessler. The senior finished the game by rushing for 287 yards on 30 carries. That gives Roessler a two-game total of 639 yards in consecutive weeks and a season total of 967 yards in four games.
But Hollister was able to eke out the win, using a 21-point fourth quarter to rally past the Mustangs.
McDonald County trailed 14-7 at halftime after two first-half fumbles led to Tiger touchdowns.
McDonald County closed 14-13 on its first possession of the second half, marching 80 yards in eight plays after Michael Williams intercepted a Hollister pass in the Mustang end zone. Roessler carried six times for 70 yards, including a 31-yard touchdown with 4:27 left in the third quarter. Dylan Allison’s kick was wide left, leaving Hollister with a 14-13 lead.
The Mustangs took less than a minute to score its second touchdown of the quarter. Sophomore Jackson Clarkson recovered a fumble on the ensuing kickoff, giving McDonald County the ball on the Hollister 21-yard line.
It took Roessler just two carries to get into the end zone, the second a 19-yard run with 3:49 left in the quarter. Roessler also ran the extra
point to put the Mustangs up 21-14.
The Mustang defense forced a punt on the Tigers’ next possession, but the Mustang offense stalled after marching inside the Hollister 25-yard line.
The Tigers then went 73 yards in 10 plays to tie the game 21-21 with 9:28 left in the game.
McDonald County then came up short on its next possession — by six inches. Facing a fourth and two at midfield with 7:18 left in the game, Roessler was stopped short of a first down by six inches.
The Tigers capitalized by going 50 yards in eight plays to take a 28-21 lead with 4:03 left in the game.
The Mustangs answered in just over a minute. After starting on their own eightyard line after an illegal block penalty on the kickoff, the Mustangs got a first down on the 19 after an eight-yard run by quarterback Ben Mora.
Roessler then bounced off a tackle on the left side off the line and outran the Tiger defense to the end zone for an 81-yard touchdown. Allison’s kick tied the game at 28-28 with 2:48 left.
But after a holding penalty put Hollister in a third and 12 situation, the Tigers’ Layton Morgan escaped a strong pass rush to find a wide-open Logan Armitage behind the Mustangs’ secondary for a 67-yard touchdown with less than a minute to go. Clay Humbyrd’s extra point capped the scoring in the Tigers’ 35-28 win.
“It was a tale of two halves,” said coach Kellen Hoover. “I never had us ready to go from the first whistle. You could tell that in the first half. Our kids just weren’t ready to go. I have to do a better job as their coach getting them ready to play in the first half. The kids fought back and came out and played really well in the second half. We just fell a little short. It comes back to execution — we have to execute better and that kind of has been our M.O. for the first four weeks.”
McDonald County came out and marched 68-yards in eight plays to take an early 7-0 lead. Roessler ran one-yard for the TD after Mora hit Boston Dowd for 38 yards to put the ball at the one-yard line.
But the rest of the half was all Hollister. The Tigers went 50 yards to tie the game after recovering a Mustang fumble at midfield.
Hollister then recovered its second fumble on consecutive Mustang possessions, taking over at the McDonald County 12-yard line. Armitage’s 12-yard touchdown run gave the Tigers a 14-7 lead at halftime.
“This was a game I definitely think we had our chances to win,” Hoover said. “We never quite took hold of the game. I made a couple of bonehead calls I wish I could take back. The kids are going to learn from it and I am going to learn from my mistakes. We are really going to have to knuckle down this week at practice. We are really going to focus on what we can do better going forward.”
In addition to Roessler’s 287 rushing yards, Mora ran for 24 yards on 17 carries. He also threw for 85 yards on seven for 10 accuracy. Dowd caught four passes for 67 yards, while Reece Cooper had one catch for 12 yards,
Roessler had one for four yards and Junior Teriek had one for two yards.
Morgan finished with 249 yards, completing nine of 17 passes to lead Hollister. His favorite target was Armitage, who caught five passes for 194 yards. Armitage also ran for 35 yards to lead the Tiger ground game, which was held to 103 yards.
McDonald County, 2-2 for the season, hosts Nevada on Sept. 21 for homecoming. Game time is 7 p.m. with homecoming ceremonies being held prior to the kickoff.
“The kids fought back and came out and played really well in the second half. We just fell a little short. It comes back to execution — we have to execute better and that kind of has been our M.O. for the first four weeks.”
Kellen Hoover MCHS Football Coach
McDonald County linemen Elliott Wolfe (74), Tanner Harnar (54) and Kaidan Campbell (50), along with Will Gordon and Tryston Leach — not shown, paved the way for Oakley Roessler to run for 287 yards in the Mustangs’ 35-28 loss to Hollister on Sept. 14 at Hollister High School.