Platte County takes care of Raytown South

By Kyle Yehle PrepsKC staff writer
Posted: September 30, 2017 - 1:52 AM

With its usual high-octane offense sputtering for most of the game, Platte County had to turn to its defense Friday night on the road.

The gritty unit responded dutifully, holding Raytown South out of the end zone until the last minute in a 31-7 businesslike win at Markland Field in Raytown.

"Raytown South's a team you have to hold your breath on every time they touch the ball," Platte County head coach Bill Utz said. "The defense played excellently. They read their keys and did their job."

Beginning the game by forcing Raytown South into a three-and-out, the Pirates inherited good field position at the Cardinal 46 and marched inside the red zone. Set in a trips-right formation, senior gunslinger Tanner Clarkson rifled his first touchdown throw of the night to junior receiver Dylan Gilbert for a six-yard score with 7:50 left in the first frame.

The Pirates gave up two turnovers on their ensuing pair of possessions with an interception and fumble. Raytown South couldn't capitalize on either turnover.

"Our defense played great in the first half to keep that offense under control," Cardinal head coach Nick Adkins said. "Offensively, we stalled out."

The teams exchanged a number of punts until the two-minute mark before halftime. That's when Clarkson tossed another short touchdown near the pylon, this time a 14-yarder to senior receiver Devin Richardson for a 14-0 lead heading into the break.

Platte County added a field goal and a pair of one-yard ground scores - one from tailback Gavin Hardman, another by Clarkson - for a 31-0 lead in the final quarter. Raytown South's junior Sincere Grimes broke off a 96-yard scoring run to post its only points.

"The defense played hard," Pirate senior two-way player Jon Watts said. "The offense started out slow but picked it up in the second half."