By John Bombatch
JAMESTOWN — After running for four touchdowns and passing for another, Greeneview quarterback Collin Matt had no idea how many times he had scored. His coach didn’t know, either.
What they did know is that their Rams team claimed a convincing 42-7 victory over a solid Springfield Catholic Central team that had lost just once going into Friday night’s game at Don Nock Field.
Matt said it just feels like the team is coming together, especially on offense.
“We’re playing faster and with more confidence, and we’ve got those reps in so’s the younger guys are now playing up to speed with everyone else. We’ve got a great team. Everyone wants to do their 1/11th and everyone else just follows suit. We trust each other and we play hard,” Matt said.
Greeneview coach Neal Kasner didn’t know how many times Matt had crossed the goal line. Just didn’t care.
“I don’t know how many times he scored, but he’s that type of player who can score a lot,” Kasner said.
Yeah, it was a lopsided win, but Kasner did see some things the Rams (5-1) can work on before their Friday, Oct. 7 contest at Springfield Northeastern.
“We turned the ball over a couple times (two fumbles, one in each half by the same runner), so that’s a concern. And we had a lot of penalties (seven for 55 yards, at least five came on special teams) so that’s also a concern. But the guys are all playing really hard. I think they know what it is we are trying to accomplish. We’re playing aggressively and the mistakes we’re making are aggressive mistakes.”
And when Matt wasn’t scoring, junior running back Griffin Mangan was breaking off big chunks of rushing yardage. Mangan had 89 yards gained on the ground by halftime. Six more carries in the second half earned him a game-high 141 yards rushing on 18 carries.
Unofficially, Matt finished the night with 100 yards running (85 which came on TD runs) and 74 yards passing.
Matt credited his entire offensive line, great blocks that led to scores by Tyler Robinette and Mangan, and thanked his receivers, too. He also explained why he didn’t know how many times he’d scored.
“Coach Kasner has instilled a ‘Next Play’ mentality in all of us. We all bought into it and we all believe in it,” Matt said. “No matter what happens on that previous play, it’s now in the past. You worry about the next one, and make it your masterpiece. And after that play is over, you do the same thing over again. I think we do a great job of that, as a team. And that’s what helps us succeed.”
Fighting Irish coach Mike McKenna said he knew Catholic Central (4-2) was in for a test as soon as he saw Greeneview on game film.
“You see them on film and just have to say ‘Wow!’” he said. “They’re just very talented. Their offensive and defensive lines are outstanding, and our kids saw it, too. We had to stay low, but if you stood up you were suddenly 10 yards downfield. … Our kids knew they had to play a perfect game to make this game even close.”
Catholic Central still managed to show some moxy late in the game.
With a constantly running game clock and trailing 42-0, Fighting Irish quarterback Colin Kelly led his team to a seven-play, 75-yard drive, capped by a 6-yard pass from Kelly to Dominic Dewitt for score. Will Clark knocked in the extra point to prevent the Rams from recording a shutout.
“We played a very good team tonight,” McKenna said. “I see them going far in the postseason.”
Score by Quarters
Catholic Central 0 0 0 7 — 7
Greeneview 7 14 7 14 — 42
G — Collin Matt 1 run (Bryce Wilson kick)
G — Matt 10 run (Wilson kick)
G — Ian Tamplin 1 run (Wilson kick)
G — Ethan Bradds 40 pass from Matt (Wilson kick)
G — Matt 14 run (Wilson kick)
G — Matt 60 run (Wilson kick)
S — Dominic Dewitt 6 pass from Colin Kelly (Will Clark kick)