Missed opportunities once again cost Oakville

By STEPHEN GLOVER

A book about the Oakville Senior High School football team’s 2008 season might be titled “Missed Opportunities.”

The Tigers (0-6, 0-5 Suburban West) had the opportunity Friday night to avoid a losing record after starting 0-5 this season. But missed opportunities again cost Oakville a win as Kirkwood defeated the Tigers 37-23.

“Once again, it was a game where we had a lot of opportunities to win,” Oakville head coach Arlee Conners told the Call. “We just didn’t finish.”

Kirkwood jumped out to a 6-0 lead when Kimuel Keller scored on an eight-yard run with 5:10 left in the first quarter. But the Tigers took a 7-6 lead when quarterback Joe Plassmeyer hit Lavell Boyd on a 12-yard pass with 8:47 left in the second quarter. Ben Hoffmann recorded the point-after touchdown, or PAT.

“Lavell is a very explosive player,” Conners said. “He’s been inconsistent in the past, but we’re trying to work him in now that he has himself under control.”

Kirkwood regained the lead with 2:18 left in the second quarter when Brian Rosser nailed a 22-yard field goal. The Pioneers extended their lead to 16-7 on a 37-yard pass from quarterback Allen Eberhart to Keller.

Oakville went scoreless in the third quarter, but that didn’t keep Kirkwood from adding to its lead as quarterback Zach Warrick nailed Malcolm Owens on a 12-yard pass with 9:38 left in the quarter to give the Pioneers a 23-7 lead. Warrick tossed his second touchdown of the game with 9:05 remaining in the fourth quarter on an 80-yard pass to Keller, extending Kirkwood’s lead to 30-7.

The Tigers ended their scoring drought with 6:46 left in the fourth quarter when Darrion Moore scored on a one-yard run.

Plassmeyer then connected with Mike Cyliax on the two-point conversion to trim Kirkwood’s lead to 30-15. Moore carried the ball 22 times for 124 yards and one touchdown.

“Darrion’s a very good running back,” Conners said. “He’s a guy with a lot of vision and he’s only a sophomore. This is an opportunity for a young guy to step in and produce.”

But Kirkwood crushed the Tigers’ hopes for a come-from-behind victory when Keller blasted a 72-yard touchdown run with 6:17 left in the fourth quarter.

Oakville scored its final touchdown with 3:57 left in the game when Plassmeyer connected with Pucci on a 22-yard pass to trim Kirkwood’s lead to 37-21. Plassmeyer then hit Boyd for the two-point conversion.

“Tony’s been coming on a lot stronger lately,” Conners said. “He’s a guy on this team that guys are looking to for leadership.”

The Tigers return to action at 7 p.m. Fri-day when they play host to Lafayette (5-1, 4-0 Suburban West).

“The thing about Lafayette is that they’re very solid football team,” Conners said. “They have a lot of guys out on the field that are doing what they’re supposed to be doing. It’s going to be a good game.”