De Soto a big help as Eudora improves to 8-0
Eudora improved to 8-0 Friday for the third consecutive season, slamming De Soto at home 55-14 to secure a spot in the playoffs.
At times the Cardinals executed perfectly. They should have, Eudora coach Gregg Webb said -- they'd been preparing for De Soto for three weeks.
Other times, it didn't matter how they executed. De Soto, with eight turnovers in the game, made Eudora's latest addition to its perfect season look pretty easy.
"In the second half we got physical and beat them up a little, but they helped," Webb said. "We jumped on them and scored when we had to."
The Cardinals got 134 yards and four rushing touchdowns from senior Travis Clarke, and another 102 and a score from junior Ryan Fisher. Eudora took control from the opening kickoff, marching eight plays to set up Clarke's nine-yard touchdown sweep.
That's how Eudora won -- with a power running game that kept De Soto's defense on the field.
The Cards ran it up thanks to the turnovers, however.
De Soto senior quarterback Erik Hill lost 21 yards on the Cats' first play from scrimmage, the snap flying over his head and 21 yards behind him.
They didn't return to positive rushing yards until late in the third quarter and turned it over nearly every way imaginable.
"That first snap was an indication," Webb said. "They never really recovered."
A fumbled pitch in the second quarter led to Eudora's third touchdown and a 20-0 advantage.
A fumbled snap on the first play of the second half eventually made the score 35-0 as Eudora quarterback Brynnen Webb snuck in from one yard out.
An eye-popping interception -- De Soto's Clinton Smethers fell to the ground bobbling the ball, then knocked it straight up in the air for Eudora's William Gadberry to grab -- led to a five-yard touchdown dive by Fisher.
Finally the Wildcats fumbled the ensuing kickoff and Eudora's Bryan Dudley took the recovery nine yards for a 55-0 lead.
"We haven't turned the ball over like that in two or three seasons," De Soto coach Brad Scott said. "They just rolled sixes when we shortened up the field like that."
Eudora averaged more than 7 Â½ yards per carry on the night, racking up 309 yards rushing to De Soto's 50.
The Cats did score twice late as Hill warmed up throwing the ball. He missed on his first six attempts, but finished the game with 168 yards. He had a 49-yard touchdown to Smethers early in the fourth quarter and hit Jamell Townsend for a 17-yard touchdown in the final minute of the game.
Eudora and Baldwin, both 2-0 in district play, are guaranteed to advance and will meet Thursday in Baldwin to decide the district's winner. De Soto, meanwhile, will be playing for a winning season Thursday as it travels to Spring Hill.
De Soto (4-4) 0 0 0 14 -- 14
Eudora (8-0) 12 16 27 0 -- 55
E: Travis Clarke 9 yard run (Evan Cleveland run failed)
E: Clarke 6 run (Brynnen Webb pass failed)
E: Ryan Fisher 34 pass from Webb (Clarke run)
E: Clarke 41 run (Fisher run)
E: Webb 1 run (Rust kick)
E: Clarke 2 run (Rust kick)
E: Fisher 5 run (Rust kick failed)
E: Bryan Dudley 9 fumble return (Rust kick)
DS: Clinton Smethers 49 pass from Erik Hill (Dylan Burford run failed)
DS: Jamell Townsend 17 pass from Hill (Mark England pass from Hill)