Whippets Run Past Riders

Shelby's Devon Brooks (8) outruns St. Marys defenders Drew Jacobs (10) and Ty Howell (12) in Friday's Division IV regional semifinal.
By: 
JAKE DOWLING
Sports Editor

The St. Marys Roughriders ran into a buzzsaw, and they did not survive the damage.

Enduring their first running clock in two seasons, Minnesota commit Brennan Armstrong and the 12-0 Shelby Whippets whipped the Roughriders out of the postseason with a 47-7 blowout in a Division IV regional semifinal at Marion Harding.

For the Roughriders (10-2) their Western Buckeye League-dominating season comes to an abrupt end as an offense that engineered more than 323.9 rushing yards and averaged 37.5 points a game were limited to 161 rushing yards and seven points.

The Roughriders did limit Armstrong's arm with just 46 passing yards and two interceptions, but the Whippets sped past the Riders in rushing yards as St. Marys surrendered a season-high 405 yards on the ground.

Trailing 20-0 — its largest deficit of the season — St. Marys showed signs of life when Bo Kuenning intercepted Armstrong on a screen pass in the flat and returned the ball to Shelby's 11 yard line with 4:47 left in the second quarter.

Four plays later, the Roughriders got on the board with a Colin Clements’ QB sneak to pull within two scores, down 20-7 with 3:27 remaining in the half.

The Whippets scored on four of their final five drives, forcing the game into a running clock.

Armstrong accounted for the four next scores for the Whippets — all on the ground — with 173 yards on 21 carries and four rushing scores.

Armstrong did the rest with a pair of first half TD passes to put Shelby up 20-0 after a missed PAT while the Roughriders mustered just 63 yards of offense on four offensive possessions.

The Roughriders ended the season winning 10 straight games after falling to Sidney in their regular season opener.

Thirteen players were named to the all-WBL teams as St. Marys captured its 24th WBL championship, 17th outright on its way to a 17th postseason appearance. St. Marys also finished the WBL season undefeated for the first time since 1993.

To read the full story, pick up Saturday's edition of The Evening Leader.