By Jordan Burton (For OzarksSportsZone.com)
The redemption tour continues for Webb City.
Eager to right the wrongs of 2016, Webb City followed up its undefeated regular season and COC Large championship with a 42-21 rout of rival Carl Junction on Friday at Cardinal Stadium.
The Cardinals rolled up 489 yards offensively against a Carl Junction defense that was surrendering just 7.9 PPG against non-Webb City teams.
At the heart of that attach was junior running back Durand Henderson, whose career-high 299 yards and five touchdowns came on just 21 carries.
For Henderson, it was a coming out party as he firmly established his presence among the elite backs in Missouri behind a great performance by the offensive line.
“Durand ran wild tonight,” said Webb City coach John Roderique. “He’s a special player and we all saw how special he really is tonight. But you’re never going to have that kind of success if the guys up front aren’t doing their job, tight end to tight end, and those guys played their tails off.”
Defensively it was another textbook game by the Cardinals.
Despite allowing three scores in a game for the first time all season (the third of which came in the game’s final minute), Webb City was able to neutralize all-state back Ray Weston.
The junior finished with just 34 rush yards on nine carries. In two games against Web City he totaled 71 rush yards on 20 carries. In his 10 other games he rushed for 1,410 yards and 26 touchdowns.
“Defensively we held our own early in the game; we did a great job, just like we’ve done all year long,” said Roderique. “When you can play ahead it sure changes things for you.”
Carl Junction did have some offensive success in the second half, using four wide receiver formations to spread out Webb City’s defense.
Junior quarterback Joe Kennedy completed 16 of his 25 attempts for 222 yards and three touchdowns. He also gained 64 yards on the ground.
Senior receiver Aaron Ludders finished with 97 receiving yards on eight receptions.
Up next for Webb City is a familiar foe in Harrisonville.
The Wildcats are the defending Class 4 state champ and were 0-7 against the Cardinals until coming to Cardinal Stadium and walking away with a 27-21 quarterfinal win last fall.
Not surprisingly, Webb City hasn’t forgotten that game…
“We had four losses last year and we’ve been able to beat three of those teams so far this season,” said senior quarterback Cash Link. “It’s extremely exciting for us to have the chance to go to Harrisonville and get a shot at them on their field. We want revenge.”
Webb City will visit Harrisonville on Friday, Nov. 10.