Bob Shore stadium played host to a defensive battle between the Camdenton Lakers and the Parkway Central Colts in the Class 5 state quarterfinals on Saturday afternoon. With the one and only score coming early in the second quarter in the form of a touchdown, the Colts were able to fend off the home team by a score of 7-0 to advance to the state final four.
Camdenton received the opening kickoff and managed to drive the ball 20 yards before having to punt it away. The Lakers put on an impressive defensive display against Parkways first possession, allowing zero yards and forcing a three-and-out.
Camdenton successfully moved the chains again in their second possession, with a 12 yard connection from Cory Simpson to Kullen Carlock igniting the home crowd. The Lakers tried to continue passing the ball, but two incompletions and a fruitless quarterback keeper led to the punt team making its second appearance.
The Lakers defense came out strong again to serve the Colts what appeared to be its second consecutive three-and-out. However, instead of punting the ball on fourth and long, Parkway quickly lined up the entire team except for the center on the left side of the field and ran a direct snap to the running back positioned behind the wall. The Mustangs were able to pick up the first down and move the ball into Laker territory for the first time with the surprise play.
Parkway utilized 230 pound sophomore running back Michael Slater to move the ball all the way to the goal line. Quarterback Zach Lazenby was able to punch it in from there. Parkway was up 7-0 early in the second quarter.
The Lakers offense had promising moments in every one of its drives, but would ultimately stall out after picking up one or two first downs. This can be credited to the Colt defense containing Murphy Ward, the all-time leading rusher in Camdenton history. This containment forced Camdenton to pass the ball at least once every three plays on a very windy day against a talented pass rush and fast defensive backfield.
Parkway started out the second half with possession of the ball. The Camdenton defense forced another three-and-out to regain possession. Again, the ensuing Laker’s drive started with a first down, but was ended with a failed run attempt and two incomplete passes.
Turnovers were the theme of the remainder of the third quarter. Parkway experienced two lost fumbles and an interception by Aric Osborn that killed a promising drive before the quarter was over. Camdenton fumbled the ball once.
Camdenton put together their longest sustained drive of the day so far at the end of the third quarter, largely composed of passing plays. After moving the ball all the way to the 38 yard line, Parkway turned up the intensity of its pass rush and came up with a sack that would set the Lakers 20 yards back.
Camdenton would have to punt the ball away.
The Lakers defense answered the call once again with a clutch four and out, but found themselves back out on the field on short rest after a Parkway snared a momentum killing interception. Parkways drive stalled after and attempting quarterback keeper on fourth and one on the Camdenton 20 yard line. The Lakers would take over with just over three minutes and two timeouts to drive the ball 80 yards.
The Lakers decided to get creative in this final drive, running an unsuccessful quadruple-reverse as well as a very successful passing play out of a “swinging-gate” formation to move the ball to midfield. This was followed by another reception by Carlock to work the ball all the way down to the 35 with 1:30 to go.
Carlock showed up in clutch situations all game long coming through time and again,
“I was giving everything I had for these seniors,” Carlock said.
They just could not finish the drive off as the Colt pass defense stepped up to force a turnover on downs. The game ended and Parkway doused coach Mark Goldenberg with Gatorade to celebrate a huge victory.
Laker head coach Jeff Shore was proud of the effort he saw from his team.
“A season has only not ended in a loss five times in the past 35 years…it is still hard but I can’t say enough about how proud I am of them and our great run.”
Parkway Central advances to take on Kirkwood on 11/16.