MHS football 8/31

Maryville quarterback Ben Walker scrambles for a gain in Friday's 36-0 shutout win over Harrisonville. 

Following a 38-35 Week 1 loss to Blair Oaks, Maryville football got back on track against Harrisonville Friday at the ‘Hound Pound. The Spoofhounds (1-1) shutout the Wildcats (0-2) by a score of 36-0.

The game marked the 54th consecutive home win for Maryville, and the first time in school history the Spoofhounds have defeated Harrisonville.

The Maryville offense, led by dynamic senior running backs Eli Dowis and Tyler Houchin, continued to shine. The duo each rushed for two touchdowns, accounting for four of Maryville’s five scores.

Sophomore running back Conner Weiss rushed for the only Maryville score that didn’t directly involve Dowis or Houchin. In some ways, Weiss has served as an unsung hero for the ‘Hounds, quietly becoming a solid running back in his sophomore season.

Dowis has been impressed with Weiss’ development. The sophomore’s playing time a season ago was minimal, yet his contributions this year have been anything but.

“(Weiss) matured a lot in one week,” Dowis said. “(He’s a) sophomore, didn’t play a snap last year when it counted, but the week one jitters are out of the way. Let me tell you, when us three (Dowis, Houchin and Weiss) are in the backfield working together like that, I don’t know if there’s a team that can stop us.”

All five of Maryville’s touchdowns came via the run. The offensive line, which was missing starting senior lineman Ben Holtman, was sturdy all game long for the Spoofhounds.

“I think we gelled better on the offensive line,” coach Matt Webb said. “That’ll continue to grow as the season goes on.”

One standout on the offensive line this season has been junior Tallon Noland. After playing mostly in a reserve role a last year, Noland has come into his own as a lineman, and his play has been notable.

“(Playing on the line is) getting a lot easier,” Noland said .”We just got to go one by one, week by week. Just do your best.”

Coming into the week, an improvement on defense was a necessity for Maryville. The difference between Week 1 and Week 2 for the Maryville defense was substantial. After surrendering 38 points a week ago versus Blair Oaks, the ‘Hounds defense pitched a shutout against the Wildcats, who are traditionally a Class 4 powerhouse on the gridiron.

“We’re very proud of the defense we play here,” Webb said. “Last week (we) did not, by any of stretch of the imagination, represent ourselves the way we should. It’s fundamdents, it’s technique: we didn’t create a new defense tonight, we just all did our 1/11th better.”

In all, Webb was pleased with the improvement of his team over the course of one week. The amelioration of the Spoofhounds was sizeable.

“Obviously, every week the goal is to go 1-0,” Webb said. “Our goals this week, No. 1, were to execute better and (to) simply do your job. I think we did that better tonight.”

Maryville will look to move to 2-1 against Chillicothe Sep. 7 at the ‘Hound Pound.

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