Cardinals crush Santa Fe Trail 61-14, Baldwin awaits
Eudora’s 61-14 pummeling of Santa Fe Trail Friday was a 48-minute highlight reel.
In terms of athleticism and talent, it was a clash between the haves and have-nots. But perhaps most noticeably, it was sophomore Chris Pyle’s coming-out party.
Sure, the upperclassmen that regularly light up the score sheet – Boomer Mays, Evan Cleveland, Brian Katzfey and Drew Noble – all played well too, but it was Pyle’s name that the public address announcer spent the majority of the evening repeating.
Pyle rushed for 159 yards on 17 carries and scored three touchdowns.
“That kid can run a little bit,” coach Gregg Webb said with a smile. “We haven’t got him that many touches yet this season, but he played well tonight.”
On the Cardinals’ first possession, Pyle ignited the drive with rushes of 35 and 14 yards before Mays hammered in the squad’s first touchdown.
On the ensuing possession Webb’s special teams blocked a Santa Fe Trail punt deep in its own territory to give the Cardinals excellent field position. They took advantage a few plays later when Mays pounded in his second of three touchdowns from the 7-yard line.
“We didn’t run iso as much tonight, and we weren’t as physical as I think we could have been,” Webb said. “But obviously we scored 61 points, so we did some things right.”
The next time the Cardinals got the ball, Cleveland showed off his arm, connecting with Brian Katzfey on a 55-yard bomb with just more than 10:30 remaining in the second quarter. The long pass set up Pyle’s first touchdown of the game from nine yards out.
Pyle’s second touchdown came after one of several Santa Fe Trail three-and-outs. Already sporting a 20-0 lead, Pyle raced 25 yards to the house virtually untouched.
With just more than five minutes remaining in the first half, Mays rumbled over several Charger defenders on a play that started at the 35-yard line, and the Cardinals took a huge 33-0 lead into the break.
The second half was just as productive as the first from an offensive perspective as Webb’s boys refused to take their feet off the pedal. What’s more, the first team was sprinkled in and out of the lineup and the substitutes were almost equally impressive.
“The first team kids played well,” Webb said. “But I guess you could say I’m kind of a perfectionist, so I find things I feel like we could do better on almost every play.”
With 6:30 remaining in the third quarter, already up 40-0, Katzfey burned the Charger punt team and raced 68 yards to the end zone.
The Chargers scored twice in the fourth quarter, including a nifty hook and ladder touchdown pass, but the game was already well in-hand for the Cardinals.
Eudora (6-2, 2-0) will play for the district championship at 7 p.m. Thursday at Baldwin.
Both teams have qualified for the playoffs, and the winner will have a home playoff game on Tuesday.