‘Jackets fall to Lakers

Photo courtesy Nicholas Mebruer
Lebanon senior John Berry (28) rushes into the end zone for a touchdown during the first half of a high school football game against Camdenton on Friday night at ‘Jacket Stadium.

By: 
ALEX BOYER ALEX@LEBANONDAILYRECORD.COM

After a wild Friday night contest between heated rivals, the Camdenton Lakers came out victorious in the battle for the Highway 5 trophy, 28-20.

The Lakers were without their top running back in senior Jay Griffin, but managed just fine as Seth Harris and Todd Simpson ran the show.

Simpson finished the night with eight carries for 128 yards while Harris ran 15 times for 60 yards.

With the loss, Lebanon drops their first game of the season as the defense struggled to stop the two headed monster of Simpson and Harris.

Lebanon head coach Will Christian tipped his hat to Camdenton after the loss.

“They are a big and physical football team,” Christian said. “They are a group who played to form tonight and I would have liked some things to be different tonight on our behalf.”

Coming into the game, the Lakers had allowed just 65 yards rushing on the season while allowing over 400 yards through the air. Lebanon ran 80 plays from scrimmage, racking up over 400 yards of total offense.

While the ‘Jackets run a triple-option offense, their only hope was to run the ball as Berry rushed for 200 yards on 39 carries, while the ‘Jackets threw for just 76 yards passing.

“He (John) is a war daddy,” Christian said. “I thought we played a lot better up front and we got a lot of tough yards.

“I thought Joey Boeshe did a great job of stepping up and filling in for Hunter Bray when he was injured.”

The ‘Jackets scored first to open the contest after Berry capped an 8 play 80-yard drive with a one-yard touchdown with 8:15 left to give LHS a 7-0 lead.

Unfortunately for LHS they struggled once again with kick coverage for the second straight week as senior Jake Hill took the ensuing kickoff for an 88-yard touchdown.

Berry would scamper into the end zone again with 1:45 remaining in the first quarter from 18-yards out for LHS to re-take the lead, 14-7.

Once again it took the Lakers no time at all to score after Simpson broke free for a 48-yard touchdown on the first play from scrimmage and the Lakers converted a two-point conversion to take a 15-14 lead. 

Lebanon would eventually get a 21-yard field goal from senior Andrew Mills to take a 17-15 lead, but after that point it was all Camdenton.

The Lakers would burn clock as Harris capped a 9 play, 62 yard drive with a two-yard touchdown with 2:44 remaining in the first half.

Camdenton received the ball to start the second half and after a missed tackle by the ‘Jackets on fourth down helped give the Lakers a first down, Simpson would bust loose the next play for a 48-yard touchdown to give CHS a 28-17 lead.

Lebanon forced a punt in the fourth quarter and drove all the way down to the Camdenton 14 yard line, but the ‘Jackets would give the ball away on a costly fumble and CHS took over.

LHS had a chance to tie the game after a field goal and forcing a punt with 48 seconds remaining. The ‘Jackets took over on their own 37 yard line, but couldn’t capitalize after the Lakers forced a fumble and jumped on it to end the game.

“We have to move forward from this loss,” Christian said. “Obviously it’s a game you would like to have, but we have plenty of other opportunities to win game and we just have to move on form this one.”

Christian said he was proud of his guys’ efforts tonight, but still have plenty of improvements to make.

“I thought it (the effort level) was better tonight,” Christian said. “The only thing I am going to say is that I thought we were tackling too high tonight.

“That isn’t necessarily an effort issue, but it is something that has to start improving now.”

The ‘Jackets will travel to Springfield to take on the Glendale Falcons next Friday night at 7 p.m.

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The Lebanon Daily Record

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