Griffons stay perfect at Hays
By Kyle Inman
September 27, 2012
Missouri Western football improved to 4-0 on the season by defeating Fort Hays State 21-3 in its first road contest in Hays, Kan.
“Fort Hays played their best football all year,” coach Jerry Partridge said. “I don’t think we played our best football, but I wouldn’t say we played poorly. If you’ve been to Fort Hays, you know it’s not the funnest trip to take. It’s a long bus ride.”
Quarterback Travis Partridge put on a good performance on his 22nd birthday as he threw for 163 yards and two touchdowns and ran for 37 yards and a touchdown.
Partridge connected with Kyle Knox on a 19-yard pass to put the Griffons on the board in the first quarter after the defense forced a punt.
Hays scored their only points of the day on a field goal in the second quarter that made it a 7-3 game. On the next Griffon possession, Partridge connected with Tarrell Downing for a 17-yard score to push the lead out to 14-3.
Despite the Griffons turning the ball over twice on an interception and fumble and dealing with some penalties, Hays was unable to capitalize, and the score remained 14-3 at the half.
“We got a win, that’s all that really matters,” Michael Hill said. “They came out there and fought and battled. They have seniors and players that want a ‘W,’ too.
We killed ourselves a little with penalties and minor mistakes, but we got the win.”
Michael Hill became Western’s all-time career rushing leader in the second quarter and added to the total with 198 yards on the game. Hill leads the entire country in rushing with 184 yards per game.
The offensive line has been dominant this season as the Western ball carriers are averaging an outstanding 6.6 yards per-carry.
The Griffon defense was relentless all afternoon, sacking quarterback Tarean Austin three times and forcing three fumbles which were recovered by Western.
David Bass sacked and took the ball from Austin in spectacular fashion and ran it back 47 yards before fumbling himself and giving it back to Hays. Bass finished with three tackles and a sack.
Ben Pister provided pressure from the other end of the defensive line as he made three solo tackles for a loss of yards, had one sack, and one fumble recovery. Sean Tray Bryson also got to the quarterback for a sack.
Defensive back Michael Jordan led the Griffons on tackles with six solo and Dan Ritter recorded five solo tackles.
Despite making 16 first downs, Hays never made it in to the red zone for a chance to score a touchdown.
The Griffons return to action on Saturday, Sept. 29, against Central Oklahoma at Spartt Stadium.