Saturday, September 28, 2019

Rocket offense conspicuously absent in 14-0 loss

Union RB Matthias Ervin is caught by Rockets
Preston Turley and Tyler Boone.
MORGANFIELD, Ky. – Take your pick: Interceptions, penalties, mental mistakes. The list could go on.

Any number of offensive faux pas could be held responsible for the No. 8 Rockets’ misfire at Union County Friday on a night when its defense played well enough to win against a bruising Braves’ rushing attack.

Despite forcing Union County into three fumbles, and Crittenden getting a couple of good kick returns from Preston Morgeson and Xander Tabor, to set up manageable field position a handful of times, the Rocket offense was as cold as a Siberian field mouse.

Union County scored in the second and fourth quarters to win the game 14-0. It was the first time in 38 games that Crittenden has been shut out.

“Offensively we couldn’t get it going,” said CCHS coach Sean Thompson. “Any time we got down the field into good position we made a mistake – mental mistakes from the opening horn to the end.”

Crittenden County hasn't come back to win after trailing at the half since 2006.

Rocket quarterback Hunter Jones threw four interceptions. He completed nine passes for just 38 yards and the running game mustered only 100 yards.

Although the Rockets were whistled for just three penalties, each of them were drive-killers. A personal foul in the first period and holding calls in the second and fourth quarters helped Union stop the Rockets dead in their tracks.

“To beat good teams you can’t do that,” Thompson said. “We have to go back and try to get better and make sure the kids know what to do on every play. We’re too far into the season to be making the mistakes we’re making right now.”

The Rockets were hit with a double-whammy from the Union County backfield. Big running back Matthias Ervin – listed at 5-10, 160 pounds but looks considerably larger – and Elijah Calloway combined for 241 of the Braves’ 270 total yards. Both are seniors and have filled in after Union’s top rusher Corinthian Seales-Portee broke his leg a couple of weeks ago.

Tabor rushed for 77 yards and Preston Turley caught four passes for 30 yards. Otherwise, the Rocket offense was conspicuously absent.

Noah McGowan, Caden McCalister and Turley each recovered Union County fumbles and Dylan Yates and Braxton Winders shared a sack for the defense. Crittenden hadn't lost a game after holding an opponent to 15 or fewer points since 2013.

The Rocket skipper said his team has a great deal of work to do before its hosts another 3A team, Trigg County, next week for homecoming. 

Crittenden 0 0 0 0
Union Co. 0 7 0 7

U-Elijah Calloway 38 run (Chris Sabino kick) 4:35, 2nd
U-Matthias Ervin 2 run (Sabino kick) 6:01, 4th

First Downs: Crittenden 7, Union 13
Penalties: Crittenden 3-35, Union 4-20
Rushing: Crittenden 28-100, Union 43-239
Passing: Crittenden 9-26-4, 38 yds., Union 4-7-0, 31 yds.
Total Yards: Crittenden 138, Union 270
Fumbles/Lost: Crittenden 1-0, Union 4-3.

Crittenden: Xander Tabor 17-77, Tyler Boone 3-(-11), Caden McCalister 3-9, Hunter Jones 5-25. Union: Ervin 20-94, Calloway 16-147, Brant Collins 1-4, Brayden McGraw 2-1, Kale Gaither 1-1, Gabe Adams 6-(-8). 
Crittenden: Jones 9-24-4, 38 yds., Boone 0-1-0, Preston Turley 0-1-0. Union: Adams 4-7-0, 31 yds.
Crittenden: Turley 4-30, Travis Guess 2-(-1), Boone 3-9. Union: McGraw 1-7, Collins 1-2, Solomon Teehan 1-9, Ben Shreve 1-13.
Jones assist; Boone 8 solos, 5 assists; Easley 4 solos, 3 assists, TFL; McCalister 10 solos, 8 assists, 2 TFLs, 2 caused fumbles, fumble recovery; McGowan 3 solos, assist, fumble recovery, TFL; Perkins 4 solos, 2 assists; Tabor 3 solos, 2 assists; Turley 6 solos, assist, fumble recovery; Winders 5 solos, 2 assists, sack; Bailey solo; Carlson solo, 2 assists; Yates 6 solos, assist, 2 TFLs; Morgeson solo.
Players of the Game
Defense Caden McCalister. Offense Xander Tabor. Special Teams Xander Tabor. Lineman Dylan Yates.
Records: Crittenden 3-2, Union 3-3