KANSAS CITY, Mo.-- Maryville football continued its stretch of dominance on a muggy night in Kansas City Sept. 14. The Spoofhounds (3-1, 2-0 MEC) blew past St. Pius X (2-2, 1-1 MEC) by a score of 56-0.
The game represented the third-consecutive shutout for Maryville. The Spoofhounds have not allowed a point since their Week 1 loss to Blair Oaks, a streak that now includes 12 quarters of football.
Offensively, the 56-point total was the highest output by Maryville this season. Sophomore quarterback Ben Walker was solid once again, throwing for two touchdowns in the contest while making some plays with his feet.
Both of Walker’s touchdown passes were caught by junior Tate Oglesby, who has become more involved as the Spoofhounds’ season has progressed. Oglesby, a wide receiver on a run-first offense, has continually found ways to get involved in Maryville’s routine offensive outbursts.
“We’re just building confidence along the way,” Oglesby said. “(Walker) knows that I’ll do what I can to get open, and I know that he’ll deliver a good ball to me. We’re on a good page right now; we’ve been successful that past few weeks, and I think it's gonna keep up.”
In some ways, the Walker-Oglesby connection has been a revelation. Maryville rode its ground game to a state championship a year ago, and with senior running backs Eli Dowis and Tyler Houchin filling out the backfield, one may have expected the ‘Hounds to do so again this season.
“We’ve worked a lot during the week in pass plays,” Oglesby said. “We know that we can run the ball whenever we please. Just working a lot in the practices, it gives us all confidence, especially in Ben (Walker). He started out a little rough, but he’s obviously proved himself lately.”
Walker attributed his opening touchdown, a 20-yard dart to Oglesby, as a product of play design. For Maryville, execution has been paramount.
“I was really looking for the open space,” Walker said. “I knew Tate (Oglesby) was going to get to the ball, I knew he was gonna be wide open. I just found him.”
Both the offense and defense continued to excel for the Spoofhounds.The Spoofhounds have continued to raise the bar in terms of point differential, but for coach Matt Webb, the margin in score holds no merit.
“The goal each week is to improve and find ways to get better as a football team,” Webb said. “I think we did that. (The scoreboard) doesn’t matter. I mean, the shutouts are great, but really we want to execute, run the ball and tackle well. I think we’re doing those things really good right now. I’m proud of them.”
The usual suspects were active in scoring for the Spoofhounds. Dowis rushed for two touchdowns, including a 65-yarder. Houchin added a score of his own coming in the form of a 15-yard rush.
In some ways, though, the game was highlighted by the contributions of often unheralded players. In the second half, sophomore Trey Houchin, Tyler’s younger brother, and senior Korbin Koch each rushed for a touchdown.
“In a 56-0 win, when I hear our starters that are out of the game, and it’s a running clock, but they’re coaching up the younger players on the field: those are extremely important minutes,” Webb said. “Starters have been there. They’ve been sophomores and juniors, so they’ve gotten that experience from guys older than them. That’s very good when they’re buying in to those techniques.”
Maryville has continued to execute to near perfection. For one more week, the Spoofhounds looked to be in a league of their own, despite facing off against a conference opponent. They will look to do so again next week against Cameron.
“Right now, we’re undefeated in conference and I know a couple of other teams are too, but to quote my favorite movie ‘Top Gun’, ‘Negative ghost rider, the pattern is full,’” Webb said. “Every week is a one week season. We’ve got to keep finding ways to improve, and the kids are listening, and they’ve bought into that.”