The El Dorado Springs Bulldogs excelled in all three phases of the football game on Friday night to defeat the Stockton Tigers 49-0 and bring home the Cedar County Bowl trophy for the second consecutive year.
Stockton won the coin toss and elected to receive the ball where they were pinned down at their own 16-yard line after a Brayden Housh kickoff. On the first play of the Stockton drive, Dylan Gallette forced the ball free from the Tiger ball carrier and Gaven Morgan jumped on the fumble giving the Bulldogs possession. Seven plays later, Tanner Witt ran 9-yards into the endzone to put ElDo up 6-0.
On the ensuing Tiger drive, Stockton was forced into a 3-and-out, and on the punt, Morgan blocked the kick giving the Bulldogs great field position once again. Unfortunately, ElDo made a couple of miscues and turned the ball over on downs. Stockton was again forced to punt. The Bulldogs then managed to drive to the Stockton 29-yard line where the drive stalled and the ball was turned over on downs.
The Tigers then began to piece together a drive getting the ball to their own 43-yard line, when a Stockton ball carrier broke into the open field and would have gone untouched into the endzone had it not been for a great effort by Haiden Overton to track the runner down and make the touchdown saving tackle at the 15-yard line. Stockton drove the ball down to the 3-yard line to face 1st and goal as the first quarter came to an end with ElDo up 6-0.
The ElDo defense began the second quarter with a stone wall defense that stuffed the Tigers twice and on third down, Keilan Jaques forced the Stockton running back to lose the ball, which Tanner Witt recovered in the endzone, giving the Bulldogs the ball at their own 20-yard line.
From here the Bulldogs found their rhythm on offense and their defense remained strong. Tanner Witt scored on a 57-yard run, followed by a two-point conversion by Trey Babcock to put the Bulldogs up 14-0.
Babcock had a 38-yard run, followed by a two-yard touchdown run and added his own 2-point conversion to give ElDo the 22-0 lead. Jaques then blocked a Stockton punt that was fielded by Gallette who returned it for 24 yards before getting wrapped up. As Gallette was getting tackled, he pitched the ball to Dagan McIntire who ran the remaining 6-yards into the endzone to put the Bulldogs up 28-0.
The half was finished off as Babcock found Derek Hayes for a 57-yard touchdown with Housh adding the PAT to give ElDo the 35-0 lead at half.
The second half saw more of the same from the Bulldogs, and on the 4th play of the 3rd quarter, Overton ran for a 47-yard touchdown, with Housh adding the PAT to put the Bulldogs up 42-0.
On the 4th play of the second ElDo drive of the half, Witt took the ball 57-yards for his 3rd touchdown on the night, while Housh added the PAT giving the Bulldogs a 49-0 lead midway through the 3rdquarter. At this point the Bulldogs rotated their younger players in the game.
Coach Scroggins said, “I thought that our boys played very well tonight. We had a couple of miscues early on, but once we got settled and made a few adjustments, we were able to control things. Offensively, Tanner Witt and Shelby McKinney played their best games in their four-year careers. Both executed at a very high rate and dominated at their position.”
“Defensively, this was another great display. Coach Carpenter had our kids ready and we secured our third shutout in six games. We took a good step forward this week and we need to keep building on the momentum that we have created.”
With the win, the Bulldogs move to 5-1 on the year and next travel to Warsaw in another Ozark Mountain Conference game.
QB KEEPER – Senior Bulldog Quarterback Trey Babcock (No. 7), who has run the ball 71 times for 400 yards and four TDs this season, ran the ball for 62 yards and 10 points in the 2018 Cedar Bowl. Here he is running the ball in the first quarter against Stockton. He has passed 43 times this season for 438 yards, seven TDs and three interceptions on 93 attempts.
HE GONE – On the 4th play of the 3rd quarter in the 2018 Cedar County Bowl, Junior Bulldog Running Back Haiden Overton broke through the Stockton Tigers line and raced 47 yards to paydirt to put the Bulldogs up 42 – 0 after a PAT kick by Brayden Housh (No. 13). In the first quarter of the game, Overton used his superior speed to catch and stop a Stockton player on the 15-yard line who had broken away and was about to score from the Stockton 43.