Maryville football was on a quest Sept. 25, when the Spoofhounds traveled to Dave Goodwin Memorial Field in Cameron, Missouri, to try and secure their first road win of the 2020 season.
The Spoofhounds (3-2, 2-1 MEC) saw another slow start against the Dragons (3-2, 1-2 MEC) when they fell behind 7-0 in the first quarter. The ’Hounds found a groove in the second quarter and were on cruise control for the remainder of the game, eventually winning 27-7.
After a two-game away stint, Maryville was looking forward to hosting Benton at the ’Hound Pound for the last home game of the regular season, which also served as homecoming for Maryville High School.
Some news followed the Spoofhounds back to Maryville, as Benton had to cancel the Week 6 matchup due to players and staff being quarantined from COVID-19.
Junior quarterback Connor Drake was looking to start in his first homecoming varsity football game.
“It will be weird not having a homecoming game, because those are memories that you make,” Drake said. “Going to the dance after the game and just playing a homecoming game is fun.”
Coach Matt Webb and athletic director Mat Beu do not want to waste a regular-season game, as MSHSAA determines district seeding based on a point system throughout the season. Losing a scheduled game could potentially be detrimental towards the Spoofhounds’ playoff position.
Maryville announced Sept. 30 that the void left by Benton was filled with a trip to play Odessa Oct. 2 in Odessa, Missouri.
It was uncertain as to what Benton’s cancellation held for the Spoofhounds. Webb was prepared to practice no matter what.
“We have a normal week of practice. Football is a sport where you have a lot of techniques to improve on,” Webb said. “You also have offensive and defensive schemes that you need to keep working to improve on. At this point of the season, I think every team needs to continue to improve.”
For the Spoofhounds, besides senior quarterback Ben Walker suffering a season-ending injury, they’re relatively healthy. While other programs could utilize an off-week to heal players, Maryville wants to keep playing.
“You play high school football to play games. We want to play,” Webb said. “We’re fine with injuries; we don’t have bumps or bruises. You play to win games.”
In the past eight years, Maryville has found themselves atop of the Midland Empire Conference seven times.
The loss of an MEC opponent, especially in a tight race with St. Pius X leading the pack, could be costly for trying to secure the conference championship.
Week 6 was Maryville’s last opportunity in the regular season to play in front of a home crowd before playing the last three games of the regular season on the road.
While it’s not an ideal situation, Webb will continue to ride the waves that have come with a season of uncertainty.
“There’s nothing that we can do about it; I don’t really have much feeling about it,” Webb said. “We’re going to go out and play with the schedule we have. That’s out of my control.”