Hawklets fall short of state title

After a memorable run by Rockhurst, which included wins over powerhouse teams such as Bentonville and Blue Springs, the Hawklets fell just short of winning the Missouri Class 6A State Title on Saturday. They lost to undefeated Christian Brothers College high school (CBC) by seven points, despite taking a lead late in the third quarter.

Things looked bad for the Hawklets in the first quarter, which ended with CBC on top 10-0. However, they scored quickly at the start of the second quarter on a TJ Green run, and junior kicker Jackson Terry made a 39 yard field goal to tie it with 3:15 left in the half.

The entire game went back-and-forth like this until the last thirteen minutes, when Rockhurst allowed CBC to score fourteen unanswered points and secure a victory.

Rockhurst’s defense held the fast-paced CBC offense to 31 points, it’s lowest amount of points all season. Much of this productivity was due to the Hawklets’ ability to slow the Cadet’s run game. Senior linebackers Luke Ritter and Alec Heying combined for 19 tackles, as CBC was held to 116 yards on 36 rushing attempts.

Although CBC didn’t produce much via the run game, the Cadet’s junior quarterback Blake Charlton found success through the air. Charlton completed 17 of his 23 pass attempts, and recorded 220 pass yards and 3 touchdowns.

Rockhurst’s offensive line struggled to slow down an athletic CBC defensive line, and the damage this had on the offense was noticeable. Senior quarterback T.J. Green was sacked eight times, for a total loss of 53 yards. Green was often forced to scramble out of the pocket and make quick decisions.

After consistently putting up exceptional numbers throughout the year, Green was held to 163 passing yards and 2 passing touchdowns. These numbers aren’t bad, but in comparison with games such as the semi final game against Francis Howell, in which Green threw for 237 yards and 3 touchdowns, Green’s numbers were not as exceptional as they have been.

Senior wide receiver Lance Boehm finished out his strong season for the Hawklets with over 100 yards receiving. He often bailed out the offense by finding openings downfield on long third downs.

In spite of the loss, the Hawklets played well. They earned their spot in the state championship and played a close game up until the last second. The Rockhurst defense performed better against CBC than any other team did this year, and the offense secured a lead late in the game and nearly tied it with a final drive. It was a memorable season, one that took Rockhurst to the dome for the first time since 2010 and nearly earned the school’s 11th state title.

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