St. Joe Benton tops Grain Valley
By Isiah Swann
Despite a delayed start, Benton came firing out of the gate.
The Cardinals seized control early on and never looked back in a 20-7 victory over Grain Valley Friday night at Sparks Field.
The game originally scheduled for 7 p.m. ended up starting at 7:40 p.m. due to weather issues, which included the tornado sirens sounding off in St. Joseph.
Two quick scores in the first quarter set the tone for the Cardinals (1-1).
The first score came off an intended pass play for Benton, but turned into a scramble for junior Cooper Burton. The quarterback made his run on the right side of the field, shedding tacklers and eventually diving over the right pylon on for the touchdown.
Benton had just punched in their first touchdown of the game and the defense set up another score.
Late in the first quarter, a Grain Valley snap went clear over the head of junior Tate Collum sending him in hot pursuit to recover the fumbled ball.
As Collum went to scoop it up, he miscalculated the bounce of the ball resulting in one of the biggest miscues for the Eagles all night.
Benton sophomore Jacob Dowell came up with the loose ball, shifting all momentum to the Cardinals.
The very next play, Benton would find the end zone once more.
This time junior Derrien Parks broke free on the right side for a 31-yard gash creating a 13-0 margin.
“To score two touchdowns in twelve seconds is a big deal,” Benton coach Matt Tabor said. “I thought we were good defensively (Friday).
“I thought our pursuit of the football was good. I thought we got a great team performance from everyone.”
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