Big night lifts Penney past East Buchanan

By Cody Thorn The St. Joseph News-Press
Posted: October 25, 2013 - 11:05 PM

Kellen Overstreet knew he would have to shoulder a little bit more offense Friday night.

Playing with a new starting quarterback, Hamilton leaned heavily on the junior running back, and he delivered with five first-half touchdowns and eight total to spark a 56-18 victory over East Buchanan in a battle of top-10-ranked Class 1 squads at Alumni Field.


The win for the No. 5-ranked Hornets ensured a two-way tie for the KCI championship between Lawson and Lathrop, which both finished 6-1 in the conference. The seventh-ranked Bulldogs — now losers of two straight after beginning the conference slate 5-0 — needed a win to secure share of the crown.

Instead, last fall’s KCI champions and Overstreet, who accounted for eight touchdowns and ran for 352 yards on 31 carries — more than 400 total counting the first-year tailback’s 64 receiving yards — in the blowout win, dominated the night.

The Hornets scored on five of six first-half possessions, and Overstreet ran for four and hauled in a touchdown pass from new starting quarterback Jaran Richman. A knee injury to starter Drew Finch last week against Lathrop forced the Hornets (7-2, 5-2 KCI) to turn to a freshman to start.

That meant a little bit more to shoulder for the do-everything runner for Hamilton.

“Our blockers were doing real good tonight,” said Overstreeet, whose previous career high was 308 rushing yards in a win earlier this season against Plattsburg. “I just tried to go out there and play to the best of my ability. I didn’t feel any extra pressure.”

Overstreet’s initial impact in the contest — likely to shake up the Class 1 District 8 standings as East Buchanan, Hamilton and South Harrison all have seven wins — took only four plays when he took a pitch and sprinted 32 yards down the Hornets’ sideline for a touchdown 1½ minutes into the contest.

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