As summer turns to fall, if you are a sports fan, chances are this is your favorite time of the year. It is for me. You have the Major League baseball pennant races heating up and heading down the September home stretch. The NFL is just about ready to launch it season. College football is ready to go. And with all that comes the fall high school sports scene. That means football, soccer, volleyball, cross country, field hockey jump to the top of that list. Myself and all my colleagues here at Prepcasts hope to bring you as much high school action as we can and cover it as well as we can. It is fun, exciting and to me, a privilege to cover the athletic skills high school students (and their coaches) provide. And provide they do!
GAME DAY IMPRESSION
Hopefully I will get to cover a game a week involving one sport or another. This week I was at Lindbergh for the football game with Oakville. The player that was the "Caught My Eye" award winner was Lindbergh defensive linebacker Tony Robinson. He had speed, aggressiveness, never quit on a play and his pursuit of the ball carrier was relentless. If you had the ball...you were going to be tackled! He was a Prepcasts Player of the game! Check all the Prepcasts Players of the Game for all the games of the week!
TOUGH, BUT GREAT, FIRST GAME!
I loved seeing a first game of a season being one that is a marquee showing. When two-time defending Class 6 champion and the state's second-ranked Hazelwood Central opened with fifth ranked (in the state) DeSmet-- that draws attention. Then, you get an exciting game that lives up to its billing-- that's exciting too. Despite six turnovers, Hazelwood Central prevailed 20-19. Michael Jordan hauled in the winning 26-yard touchdown catch From Jamal Flowers with just over three minutes to play to seal the victory. He and Flowers had another 20 yard TD catch in the first quarter. Second half injuries to key players hurt the DeSmet chances in the second half but kudos to both schools for opening the football season on a high note.
If there was a crazier or more bizarre finish than the CBC-Fort Zumwalt West let me know about it. CBC had tied the game with 56 seconds remaining on a touchdown pass from Dalton Demos to Kyron Norman. The ensuing PAT by Matt Hanson put the Cadets up by a point at 34-33. But West, with the aid of two pass interference penalties and a bungled field goal attempt on third down that they managed to turn into an incompletion, rallied for a fourth down field goal from Justin Montgomery to grab victory from defeat and a 36-34 win.
Another exciting win was found in the AAA conference by St. Mary's. In overtime, the Dragons posted a 24-23 road win over Lutheran St. Charles after the Cougars had tied the game with a field goal as time expired in regulation!
So much for the top ten pre-season rankings in the St. Louis area! Five of the ten top teams in the "Large School" category lost in week 1. This should keep things interesting for a while. Stay tuned for a few shake ups!!
One of the upsets came when Ladue's Kortland Webb engineered a 12-play 80-yard game winning touchdown drive and they hung on to defeat eighth-ranked Parkway Central. Ladue was ranked sixth in Class 4. That too was another first game with some meaning for both schools.
Even the small schools rankings were shook up a bit when No. 2 MICDS lost to Class 2 (but fifth ranked) Maplewood 26-16 at home. It was MICDS's first opening day loss since 1999.
Cardinal Ritter was ranked No. 3 (2nd in Class 3 in the state) went down in their opener losing 13-6 at St. Dominic. Anthony Pacheo's field goals of 32 and 33 yards proved to be the difference in coach Jim Cook's debut for the Crusaders.
It's early but keep an eye on.... SLUH, Lindbergh and Eureka moving up after strong opening week victories. I bet I will name more next week...
CLASS 5 BATTLE IS LOOMING!
Class 5 state champion Webster Groves put 51 points on the board rolling up 497 yards of offense in a 51-14 road win over McCluer. Hoops standout Rayshawn Simmons left the basketball court to see some time at QB for the Statesmen and completed 11 of 14 passes for 211 yards. Marquis Clemons (who also saw time at QB) blocked a punt, had an interception, threw a 76-yard touchdown pass and ran for scores of 11 yards and one yard.
Chaminade showed they will stay right with Webster. They scored on their first three possessions built a 21-0 lead and cruised to a 49-20 win. Standout running back Rob Standard rushed for 208 yards and four touchdowns. They will meet Webster Oct. 15.
FIVE GUYS WITH FOUR TOUCHDOWNS
The first weekend of football produced five players with four touchdowns. Mehlville's Remington Grisby and Warrenton's Scott Lathrop each scored four touchdowns and added a two-point conversion for a 26-point night. Chaminade's Rob Standard, Ladue's Kortland Webb and O'Fallon's Ejay Johnson each crossed the goal line four times as well.
Good luck to all in week #2!