The way Rockhurst played defense in the first half Friday against Raymore-Peculiar, it became clear the Hawklets didn’t need many points to win in a battle of unbeaten teams.
Rockhurst scored a touchdown late in the first quarter and another one late in the second quarter, and that was enough points for the Hawklets to secure a 21-0 road victory. The win pushed Rockhurst’s record to 4-0, and Ray-Pec dropped to 3-1.
“This was a very important game on our schedule,” said Rockhurst senior quarterback Chance May, who threw two touchdown passes. “We put in a lot of time in during the offseason and this week. We really wanted it and came up and got it.”
Give credit to the tenacious defensive play by the Panthers for keeping the game close in the first half.
“Defensively, we were on the field way too long,” Ray-Pec coach Tom Kruse said. “We got to go back to the drawing board. Rockhurst is a good football team. Physically, upfront defensively, they caused us some fits. We couldn’t sustain drives. Really, we had no rhythm and they played a part in that. We know what we got to get better at.”
Before a clutch fourth-down conversion by Rockhurst late in the second quarter, the score did not match the Hawklets’ dominance.
Rockhurst prevented Ray-Pec from crossing midfield in the first half but only led 7-0 on a 19-yard touchdown pass from May to Chris Teahan with 31 seconds left in the first quarter.
“Our defense has really been consistent the past three games,” May said. “Coming into here, we thought if our defense played well, we get two points on the board, we feel like we can shutdown anybody.”
It appeared that was going to be the score at halftime. With just over 2 minutes remaining in the second quarter, Rockhurst faced fourth and 5 yards to go at Ray-Pec’s 41.
Instead of punting, the Hawklets went for it. The gamble paid off big when May tossed a 41-yard touchdown pass to Ross Elder with 1:55 remaining in the second quarter.
“It made me feel good that coach had enough confidence in me to make a play, and it was a heck of a play by our receiver,” May said. “He ran a good route. I threw it in the corner and he made someone miss real bad and took it into the end zone and gave us a lot of confidence going into halftime.”