Lawson swings upset of Trenton, ending Bulldogs season at 8-2

The KCI Conference’s Lawson Cardinals traveled to C.F. Russell Stadium in Trenton on Friday night for a Class 2, District 8 quarterfinal, and by the time the final horn sounded, the visitors had earned a 21-14 victory, improving to 7-3 and earning a semifinal trip to Higginsville.

Trenton, coming in with home field advantage courtesy of an 8-1 regular season record and #4 seed, had numerous opportunities to put the first points of the night on the board early, as senior safety Coleman Griffin intercepted an overthrown pass just 1:14 into the first quarter.  Tom Johnson had the play-by-play call: 

In an early sign of worry for the Bulldogs, the opportunity from the turnover failed to result in points, as Trenton went 4 and out on the ensuing series of downs.  The game remained scoreless until the final moments of the second quarter, when Lawson’s Garrett Green scored on a 1-yard plunge, with the extra point giving the Cardinals a 7-0 halftime edge.

Lawson’s starting quarterback Wibbenmeyer doubled the lead just 53 seconds into the final quarter, finding a seam in the heart of the Trenton defense and racing 60 yards for a score, as Lawson led 14-0.

From that point, staring season survival in the face, the Trenton offense sparked.  Despite losing fullback Sam Gibson for a handful of plays with an upper body injury on the ensuing drive, the Bulldogs drove the ball into the red zone, with junior halfback Gabe Novak getting the home team on the scoreboard:

Despite being down by just 14-7, Trenton’s defense, worn down by Lawson’s ability to win the time of possession battle, failed to get a stop on the next drive as the Cardinals slowly pushed the ball downfield.  A 6 minute and 34 second drive ended with a 2 yard Wibbenmeyer sneak that put a nail into Trenton’s coffin, as the Cardinals, with 2:31 remaining, pushed the lead to 21-7.

Trenton, needing two touchdowns in the games final minutes to salvage overtime, raced the ball downfield, with a Griffin to Novak connection drawing the ‘Dogs within seven points with 35 seconds remaining: 

An onside kick attempt by Trenton kicker Sam Gibson was recovered by Wibbenmeyer at midfield, with the Cardinals kneeling on first down to run out the clock.

The game was particularly frustrating for THS for more reasons than just the final score, as the Bulldogs will look back at a first quarter that had opportunities thwarted by dropped passes, both offensively and defensively, and a loss that came despite Trenton being the superior team in two key areas.  The Bulldogs were penalized six times for 36 yards, with Lawson slapped for eight penalties for 67 yards.  Trenton, despite its difficulty to improve the football against a Lawson defense that was the story of the game, did not turn over the football in the contest.  Lawson turned over the ball three times, losing a pair of fumbles after Griffin’s early first quarter pick.

In other Class 2, District 8 action, Richmond beat Lexington 49-0 while Macon took down Lathrop 35-8.  In Class 2, District 7, Clark County beat Montgomery County 33-12 and Hallsville shutout Palmyra 38-0.

Other final scores from Friday, October 28, 2022: 

8-Man, District 2: 

Knox County 48, Northwest (Hughesville) 6

Concordia 66, Keytesville 22

8-Man, District 3

DeKalb 50, Southwest Livingston 22

8-Man, District 4

Stanberry 78, Nodaway Valley 34

South Holt 56, Mound City 6

Class 1, District 7

Brookfield 30, Marceline 29 (OT) 

Putnam County 44, South Harrison 14

Milan 22, Maysville 20 (2 OT’s) – Milan plays at Putnam County on Friday night on KTTN FM 92.3

Class 1, District 8 

East Buchanan 68, Plattsburg 0 

Penney 20, West Platte 15

Mid-Buchanan 35, Polo 18 

North Platte 48, Carrollton 6

Class 3, District 7 

Oak Grove 56, KC Northeast 12

University Academy d. KC Central (Saturday) 

Odessa 70, Summit Christian 16

Class 3, District 8 

St. Pius X 49, Cameron 6

Savannah 64, Lafayette 20 

Chillicothe 40, Benton 26

Class 4, District 8 

Excelsior Springs 46, Marshall 0 

Smithville 2, KC East 0 (FORFEIT) 

Van Horn 22, Winnetonka 0 

Class 5, District 8 

KC North 34, St. Joseph Central 28 

Platte County 54, William Chrisman 23

Class 6, District 3

Nixa 35, Ozark 7

Raymore-Peculiar 56, Joplin 42

Lee’s Summit North 35, Lee’s Summit 17

Lee’s Summit West 21, Springfield Kickapoo 10 

Class 6, District 4

Liberty North 37, Blue Springs 7 

Blue Springs South 42, Liberty 14

Park Hill South 50, Staley 40

Park Hill 49, Rockhurst 42