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Underwood 42, MA 17
Mount Ayr’s road to the Dome came to an end Friday night at the hands of the Underwood Eagles.
The Raiders finished out the season as district champions and grabbed some hardware for their participation in the State Playoffs in a season that could have ended in the blink of an eye during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Carpe Diem, or seize the day, was the motto of the 2020 Raider football team.
“Every game we play is a gift,” said coach Derek Lambert. “We didn’t know how many of these we would get.”
The Raiders received a first round bye, before defeating the Interstate-35 Roadrunners and drawing the Eagles in round three of the State Playoffs.
The Eagles and Mount Ayr had never met in school history before and in their first meeting, the Raiders fell 42-17.
The game started off slow, with both teams not reaching the 50 in their first couple of drives, before Mount Ayr finally clawed its way into Eagle territory but was stopped short.
The Raiders drew first blood with a Peyton Stull field goal that was good from 25 yards out.
Only 2:36 remained in the first quarter.
The Eagles answered right back, however, with a pass from Alex Ravlin to Brayden Wollan. The point after was good, giving the Eagles a 7-3 lead.
The second quarter saw 21 more points put up on the board, 14 by Underwood and seven by the Raiders.
The Eagles scored with seconds remaining on the clock.
“It was another punch in the gut,” said coach Lambert. “We’ve had those the last couple of weeks. It deflated us a little bit.”
Mount Ayr went into halftime trailing 21-10.
To begin the second half, Underwood received the kick. The Eagles stretched their lead to a 25 point lead after three quarters of play.
The fourth quarter saw seven points put up by each team, with Mount Ayr finding a seven yard pass from Jaixen Frost to Dawson Swank to end the season with a touchdown.
The Raiders gained 389 yards of offense against the Eagles, however, the Eagles were able to out pace Mount Ayr with 431 yards of offense.
Through the air, Mount Ayr gained 296 yards on 22 completions with one interception, while rushing for 93 yards on 33 attempts.
The Eagles threw for 250 yards on 15 completions and one interception, while rushing for 181 yards on 37 attempts.
The Raiders played a fairly clean game, drawing four penalties for 40 yards, while Underwood saw six flags thrown against them for 50 yards.
The Raiders lost two-of-three fumbles on the night, which helped the Eagles extend their lead.
Leading the ground attack for Mount Ayr was Dawson Swank, who ran for 36 yards on six carries.
Jaixen Frost was 20-of-40 through the air with two touchdowns and one interception.
Frost’s favorite target of the night was Erik Trujillo who caught four passes for 80 yards, while Payton Weehler also saw four catches for 71 yards.
Trae Ehlen also saw four catches, gaining 58 yards.
Adler Shay saw four catches his way for 39 yards and a touchdown.
Defensively, the Raiders were led by Jaydon Knight and Cody Larson.
Knight was in on three tackles, while also recording six himself, while Larson saw action on six assisted tackles and five solo.
Adler Shay had a big interception near the Eagle endzone, which resulted in a Mount Ayr touchdown, also scored by him.
The Raiders close out the season 7-2 overall, while going 4-1 in the district.
“It’s hard to put into words, when seniors leave. I’ve had the opportunity to work with most of them for six years and just the growth, not just physically, but how they grow into young men is probably the best part of being an educator. This group of seniors was so fun to coach, they give a great effort every night.”
The game also marked the final Raider contest under head coach Derek Lambert who has coached for 24 years and assistant coach and offensive coordinator James Smith who has coached in the Raider football program for 42 years.
“I’m going to steal a line from coach Showalter. He wasn’t born a Raider but he got here as fast as he could,” said Lambert. “I’ve been a Raider longer than I’ve been anywhere else and I’ll always be a Raider. It’s so much fun to talk about the history of the program, who used to wear what jersey. A lot of great football players and a lot of great young men. I’ve stood on the shoulders of a lot of previous coaches, one reason I didn’t want to leave here was Dave Still, Delwyn Showalter and James Smith. Three guys that are legendary in Raider football. They have put their whole heart in everything they’ve done for this program and they taught me how to be a man, I’ve stood on their shoulders and grabbed their coat tails. All the credit goes to them.”
1 2 3 4 F
MA 3 7 0 7 17
UE 7 14 14 7 42
2:36 – MA – Peyton Stull 25-yard field goal.
1:53 – UE – Ravlin to Wollan. PAT good.
7:45 – UE – Ravlin 3-yd run. PAT good.
1:39 – MA – Frost to Shay 16-yd pass. PAT by Stull good.
0:47 – UE – Ravlin to Kuck 31-yd pass. PAT good.
9:15 – UE – Ravlin to Hall 8-yd pass. PAT Good.
0:37 – MA – Ravlin to Hall 15-yd pass. PAT good.
7:29 – UE – Ravlin to Hall 19-yd pass. PAT good.
3:46 – MA – Frost to Swank 7-yd pass. PAT Stull.
1st Downs MA UE
Total 22 21
Rushing 5 9
Passing 16 10
Penalty 1 2
Attempts 33 37
Gained 119 191
Lost 26 10
Net 93 181
Completions 22 15
Attempts 42 24
Percentage 52.4 62.5
Intercepted 1 1
Net 296 250
Total Offense 389 431
Punts 3 4
Average 28 32
Punt Return 2 37
Kickoff 81 28
Int. Returns 0 6
Fumble Ret. 0 0
Fumbles 3 0
Fumbles lost 2 0
Penalties 4 6
Yards lost 40 50
Comp Att Yds
Frost 20 40 273
Pierson 1 1 15
Weehler 1 1 8
Att. Gain Avg
Frost 11 3 0.3
Weehler 7 21 21
Shay 5 30 6
Swank 6 36 6
Knight 1 1 1
Cole 1 2 2
Ehlen 1 0 0
White 1 0 0
Rec Yds Avg
Ehlen 4 58 14.5
Weehler 4 71 17.8
Shay 4 39 9.8
Swank 2 15 7.5
Trujillo 4 80 20
Shaha 2 16 8
Knight 2 17 8.5
Ehlen 5 3
Weehler 2 3
Shay 2 3
Swank 3 2
Knight 6 3
Cole 0 1
C.Larson 5 6
Shelman 3 0
R.Larson 2 5
Strange 1 3
Morales 1 0
Trujillo 2 1
Maudlin 3 0
Shaha 3 0
Frost 1 0
Stull 4 30.3
Trujillo 5 81
Pierson 3 28
Ehlen 1 2
Shay 1 0