Hogan Prep tops O'Hara, stays perfect
By Brian Spano PrepsKC Senior Writer
Hogan Prep Academy’s hopes for an undefeated dream season continued after its 42-7 drubbing of O’Hara in the opening round of the Missouri Class 3, District 7 playoffs Thursday night.
In a bit of a scheduling quirk, the Celtics (3-7) hosted the game, even though they were officially the visiting team, because Hogan (10-0) was the higher seed, and its field isn’t equipped with lights.
Seems it didn’t matter where the game was played, the Rams were ready to accept the challenge, led by its two star running backs, Ke’Wan Riley and Anthony Sherrils and quarterback Isaih Baylis. The three combined for 393 yards on the ground and accounted for all six touchdowns.
But as amazing as those stats were, it still took a little while for the Hogan offensive machine to get revving. The Rams first score came with 24 seconds remaining in the first quarter when Riley bolted for a 60-yard touchdown.
“O’Hara gave us all we wanted early, and it was a dogfight there for a while,” Rams head coach Phil Lascuola said of the team’s slow start. “We kind of got into a little rut over the last couple of weeks. We played some up-and-coming teams, but their programs were down this year. Like I told the team at halftime we started off slow. Middle of the first half, we did really well, then by the end of the first half, we started getting in that rut again.”
After that, it appeared the Rams had settled into the game and found a rhythm offensively. Riley added another score of 34 yards, and Baylis had runs of 14 and 27.
The Celtics were able to muster a late second-quarter drive to get on the board right before halftime, engineered by sophomore quarterback Michael Briggs. He led the team 75 yards in five plays hitting Cardell Miller for 13 yards, Zach Drake for 38 and Hondo Pearcy for 18 to set up a first and goal at the 1. Briggs capped the drive by plunging in. Unfortunately, it was the last time the Celtics would cross the goal line the rest of the night.
Hogan’s speed was too much for O’Hara’s defense to handle with Riley, Sherrils and Baylis coming at them all night.
“We wanted to come out and play well,” Riley said. “Once I was able to get that first run for a touchdown, we were able to get some momentum and really get things going.”
O’Hara had its chances to be in the game, especially in the first half, but too many dropped passes and overthrown balls left them digging out of a deep hole most of the game.
Now, the Rams must turn around on a short week and play Center on Halloween night in the next round of the playoffs in what could be an interesting matchup of two speedy teams.
“We just have to practice hard this week,” Baylis said of the short week of preparation before the next round of the playoffs. “We’ll be ready to go no matter who we play.”
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