Kennett football team drops district semifinal at Ste. Genevieve 41-14
STE. GENEVIEVE, Mo. - The Kennett Indians recorded the first touchdown of each half but were unable to win the rest of the playoff battle Friday night at Ste. Genevieve.
The second-seeded Ste. Genevieve Dragons responded with the final three touchdowns of each half as it rallied from an early 7-0 deficit to collect a 41-14 home win against third-seeded Kennett in a Class 3, District 1 semifinal.
“They did a good job of keeping us off the field by running the ball very well,” Kennett coach Aaron Pixley said. “We also had some very long second and third down situations because of penalties. One time it was third and at least 30 and we got a big chunk of it back, but had to punt. If you think back, we did a lot of things to ourself tonight with penalties that we did the first half of the season. It’s tough for any team to work out of those situations, but credit Ste. Genevieve’s defense because they did a good job as well. But we hurt ourself quite a bit tonight on penalties and have to be better on first down.”
Kennett got Ste. Genevieve to the turn the ball over on downs on the opening drive of the game and followed with a 68-yard drive that ended with quarterback Patrick Maddox throwing a 17-yard touchdown pass to Jaylean Kinnon. A successful point after attempt by Andrew Spence put Kennett on top 7-0 with 6:47 left in the first quarter.
“We came out with a good drive and scored,” Pixley said. “We had some adversity on that drive with a couple penalties that backed us up, but we were able to move the sticks and find a way to get it into the end zone.”
Ste. Genevieve gave the ball to running back Luke Brewster often after falling behind 7-0. Brewster had 18 carries for 127 yards and three rushing touchdowns by halftime as Ste. Genevieve moved ahead 21-7 by the break.
“We came out and got a defensive stop on their first drive and went up 7-0,” Pixley said. “But it just seemed like we were out of cink the rest of the way on both sides of the ball. I feel like, for the most part, you have to tip your hat to Ste. Genevieve because they played extremely hard.”
Kennett put together another 68-yard scoring drive to start the second half that ended with Maddox running the ball four yards for a touchdown with 8:35 left in the third period.
Ste. Genevieve followed with touchdowns on three of its first four offensive possessions of the second half to set the final score.
Brewster finished with 27 carries for 171 yards.
“He did his job,” Pixley said. “I think the real story of the game is what they did to us upfront. We made adjustments, but they still did a really good job of blocking us upfront.”
Levi Gonz added seven carries for 63 yards for Ste. Genevieve.
Maddox completed 17 of 31 passes for 175 yards.
Cameron West anchored Kennett’s rushing attack with nine carries for 45 yards. West also caught seven passes for a team-high 57 yards.
Heath McHaney had three receptions for 48 yards and Tyriek Thomas had three receptions for 29 yards and caught an interception.
Second-seeded Ste. Genevieve (7-4) plays at top-seeded Park Hills Central (10-1) in the Class 3, District 1 final Friday. Park Hills beat fourth-seeded Potosi 21-7 in its district semifinal.
Kennett won five of its final seven games after starting the year 1-3 to finish the 2016 season with a record of 6-5.
“Most of our team was strictly junior varsity guys last year,” Pixley said. “This was their first year of varsity experience and not many people gave them a shot to do that well. They had a lot of peaks and valleys, which is what you get sometimes get with a very inexperienced team. But our peaks were really good and we had some games where we played really well, including last week.
“Our biggest problem was we would play well for a half, or the first and third quarter, but not the entire game,” he continued. “But that inconsistency is on me as much as them. We just have to be more consistent and when we get to that point we will be a good football team.”
Kennett graduates nine seniors.
“They were a huge part of our football team,” Pixley said of the seniors. “Every one of them had a big stake in our success. They were good boys that played hard. They helped our younger kids fight through adversity and fight until the end. I’m very proud of them. They gave their heart and soul out there the entire season. I cannot say enough of them, love them and think they all have a bright future.”
The Indians have the luxury of returning 43 of the 52 players listed on its roster next season. Pixley hopes the experience his youthful squad gained this season will lead big things in the near future.
“We talked to them about staying together and sacrificing in the offseason together,” Pixley said. “And if they will do that and go through all the things it takes to be a champion we will be champions here. I really believe that. It’s one of the biggest reasons I came to Kennett because I believe these kids can be champions. We just have to make it happen and I hope it happens.”
Ste. Genevieve 41, Kennett 14
KHS 7 0 7 0 - 14
SGS 7 14 7 14 - 41
K - Jaylean Kinnon 17 pass from Patrick Maddox (Andrew Spence kick), 6:47
SG - Luke Brewster 16 run (Gabe Greminger kick), 4:06
SG - Brewster 15 run (Greminger kick), 10:09
SG - Brewster 4 run (Greminger kick), 5:06
K - Maddox 3 run (Spence Kick), 8:35
SG - Dalton Giesler 16 pass from Brandon Hinson (Greminger kick), 6:08
SG - Brewster 5 run (conversion failed), 11:44
SG - Gamden Roe 17 run (Greminger kick), 7:13
RUSHING - (Kennett) Jaylean Kinnon 4-10, Cameron West 9-45, Patrick Maddox 12-8, X’Zavier Whitfield 1-7, Azeon Nelson 4-33; (Ste. Genevieve) Luke Brewster 27-171, Levi Gonz 7-63, Brandon Hinson 1-(-5), Isaac Boyd 3-34, Camden Roe 6-23, Derek Morganthaler 3-18, Ty Brown 1-2.
PASSING - (Kennett) Patrick Maddox 17-31-0 =175; (Ste. Genevieve) Brandon Hinson 5-7-1 =127.
RECEIVING - (Kennett) Tyreik Thomas 3-29, Heath McHaney 3-48, Jaylean Kinnon 2-23, Cameron West 7-57, X’Zavier Whitfield 2-18; (Ste. Genevieve) Luke Brewster 1-2, Dalton Giesler 2-70, Logan Rhinehart 1-15, Gabe Greminger 1-30.