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Football

Stars dominate Eagles to win second-straight regional

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DOVER —  It was no secret what the Western Boone offense wanted to do on Friday night in their regional match-up with Heritage Christian.

Stopping them proved to be an entirely different problem.

The Stars rushed 49 times for 271 yards, jumped out to a 35-0 lead and cruised to the semi-state with a 35-14 win over Heritage Christian.

"The game plan is to go right at them," Western Boone head coach Justin Pelley said. "That's what we do well, our line does well and what we know well. We have faith in that and we showed that tonight."

Heritage Christian's defense came into the game only allowing 85 yards rushing a game, and 3.2 yards a carry.

Western Boone had 92 yards rushing in the first quarter alone.

"It is a mentality that me and coach (Jayme) Comer preach all week," Western Boone offensive line coach Matthan Gadbury said. "It is being physical and playing downhill football. Right now it is clicking for us."

Western Boone came into the game rushing for more than 225 yards a game and more than six yards a carry.

Three different players have rushed for more than 100 yards in a game. Friday night, four different players scored rushing touchdowns, and that doesn't include Brett Wethington, who rushed for 78 yards on 13 carries.

"We have the same starting linemen from week one, and that's a big thing to have that consistency up front," Pelley said. "I don't want to take anything away from our running backs, because they all do a great job, but the one constant is that line in front of them. And our quarterback is pretty savvy too, and he can check us into a great play."

The Stars got off to a quick start on Friday.

Taking the opening kick-off, they went 77 yards in 10 plays, scoring on a 5-yard run by Connor Hole.

Five plays later, Hole made an incredible one-handed interception to give the Stars' the ball back, and after Spencer Wright found Hole for a 50-yard pass to get the ball inside the five, Wright punched it in from a yard out to make it 14-0 late in the first quarter.

"All Connor does is make big plays," Pelley said. "We had Riggs Baxter come and talk to our team last night, another No. 24, and all he talked about was envisioning making big plays. Then you see No. 24 tonight, Connor Hole, come out and make huge plays. That's what he does, week in and week out. He is a great high school football player."

The Stars didn't slow down in the second quarter.

After forcing a three-and-out, the Stars went 52 yards in seven plays, with Hole adding another touchdown run to make it 21-0 at the half.

Western Boone out-gained the Eagles 231-62 in the first half.

The second half didn't get much better for the visitors.

They fumbled on the first play of the second half, and Robby Taylor scored from five yards out to make it 28-0.

Taylor finished the game with 23 carries for 147 yards.

"Robby is a bowling ball," Pelley said. "We had talks last year of moving him to line, and he would have done it for the team, but he stayed at running back. You can see what a big impact he has had, and it let's us get Brett off the field and running behind our line helps a lot too."

Western Boone went up 35-0 on an 11-yard touchdown run by Luke Marsh midway through the fourth quarter.

Heritage Christian added two touchdowns in the final minutes.

Western Boone will be on the road for the semi-state next week, traveling to either Triton Central or Evansville Mater Dei.

Those teams play at noon on Saturday.

Pelley said the Stars will go watch the game to get a look at both teams, but doesn't see a real advantage one way or another.

"I'm sure they saw us play tonight too," Pelley said. "We will go watch them play tomorrow. It is a little bit of a different deal, but we have been through this. Last year, it was kind of the same deal having to play on Saturday. You gain a day or lose a day depending on the outcome, so we will have to adjust the schedule, but it is a heck of a problem to have."

 

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