If the Oakville Senior High football team had any hopes for a Suburban West Conference championship this season, they might be fading fast after Friday night’s 29-14 loss to Kirkwood at home.
“We knew that they (Kirkwood) were going to be good and in order to win, we were going to have to do things that would really benefit our cause,” Oakville head coach Arlee Conners said. “We didn’t execute and seize the moment when we had the opportunity.”
The loss for the Tigers (4-2, 3-2 Suburban West) moves them toward the middle of the pack in the conference standings while Kirkwood clings on to a glimmer of hope at 4-1 overall with a 4-1 mark in conference play.
Kirkwood took a 7-0 lead with 8:32 left in the first quarter when quarterback Sam Wright connected with Ahmad Hicks on a 36-yard pass.
Kirkwood’s defense gave it a 14-0 lead with 8:38 left in the second quarter when Montrell Jones intercepted a pass by Oakville quarterback Joe Plassmeyer and ran the ball back for a 26-yard touchdown.
Kirkwood extended its lead when David Thomas grinded in a three-yard run with 4:29 remaining in the first half to give the Pioneers a commanding 20-0 lead at halftime.
“Our guys were just not concentrating in the first half,” Conners said. “It was homecoming and our guys were missing their assignments and just not paying attention to the game.”
Oakville finally got onto the scoreboard with a 38-yard touchdown run by Darrion Moore with 10:01 left in the third quarter, trimming Kirkwood’s lead to 20-7. Moore carried the ball 18 times for 107 yards.
“I thought Darrion ran pretty well Friday night,” Conners said. “It’s probably the best that he’s run all year long.”
Kirkwood added three points on a 41-yard field goal by Brian Rosser for a 23-7 lead with 2:51 remaining in the third quarter. Rosser provided another three points with a 25-yard field goal with 9:31 left in the game.
But Oakville refused to go away quietly as running back Paul Taylor grinded in a one-yard touchdown run with 6:49 left.
Taylor carried the ball three times for only two yards, but recorded three receptions for 43 yards.
“Paul did most of his damage in the passing game,” Conners said. “He’s somebody who always provides big plays for us on offense.”
Rosser nailed a 40-yard field goal with 2:51 left to give Kirkwood a 29-14 lead and the eventual win.
The Tigers return to action at 7 p.m. Friday when they travel to Lafayette (4-2, 2-2 Suburban West), which is coming off a 42-14 win at Mehlville last Friday. The Lancers racked up 161 yards rushing and 202 yards passing against the Panthers.
“Lafayette’s one of the more solid teams we’ll play against and they’ve got some good size up front,” Conners said. “I like the way they run the ball and it’s going to come down to the team that makes the fewest mistakes.”