Kennett'sNo. 34 Darius Warren chases Malden No. 23 Romello McCoy.
KENNETT, Mo. - The Malden Green Wave football team rushed the ball for over 300 yards on its way to a convincing 67-22 road win against the Kennett Indians on Senior Night at Metz Cherry Stadium Friday.
It is the Green Wave's fifth straight victory of the 2012 season and Kennett's eighth consecutive loss.
"I felt like it was one of our most complete games of the year," Malden third-year coach Joel Wyatt said. "We put together four good quarters. I felt like our offensive line set the tempo and controlled the line of scrimmage from start to finish. Defensively, we gave up a couple of drives early, but we really settled in and played assignment football. I thought our special teams was great.
"As far as a complete game in all three phases this is probably our most solid win of the year," Wyatt continued.
Malden never trailed Kennett.
The Indians committed the first of its three turnovers on the opening kickoff when Darius Warren was unable to secure the kick return near Kennett's own 20-yard line. Zach Gray fell on top of the lose ball Kennett was unable to obtain.
The Green Wave's Romello McCoy rushed the ball 20 yards and into the end zone on the next play of the game. Malden took an 8-0 lead with 11:44 left in the first quarter following a successful two-point conversion attempt.
"We misplayed the kick returns," Kennett coach Corey Adkisson said. "It looked like we had the first one and lost control of it. That hurt opening up the game. It's tough when you give someone a short field like that. It puts your defense in a tough bind."
Kennett moved the ball one yard on its next offensive possession before it was forced to punt the ball back to the Green Wave. Malden tacked on its second score less than two minutes after regaining possession of the ball when McCoy ran for a four-yard touchdown.
"Their offensive line and defensive line was able to control the line of scrimmage," Adkisson said. "When you do that it makes it tough. We had to wing it a lot to move the offense. On defense, when you control the line like they did it is tough at any level."
Kennett put together its first scoring drive on its next offensive possession when quarterback Harold Weeden connected with Warren for a 24-yard touchdown pass. Weeden completed three passes in the drive for more than 15 yards in the 71-yard scoring drive. Kennett's first touchdown trimmed Malden's lead to 16-8 with 4:21 left in the first period.
"After the first couple of series we went with our empty package," Adkisson said of the touchdown. "We tried to spread them out and take a defensive linebacker out of the front. We had some success there. We almost had to use the pass to open up the run."
Mitchell Coleman returned the ball 85 yards for a touchdown after Kennett's score to pad the Green Wave's lead. Malden's Gunner Jones intercepted a pass thrown by Weeden on Kennett's next drive and McCoy capitalized on the turnover when he ran the ball 18 yards for a touchdown to stretch Malden's lead to 32-8 with 9:44 left in the first half.
Both teams scored on their final possession of the first half. Weeden had a 3-yard rushing touchdown to account for Kennett's score and McCoy ran the ball seven yards and into the end zone for his fourth touchdown of the half with 1:10 left in the second quarter. Malden led Kennett 40-16 at halftime.
"He's a good back and has got a good offensive line," Adkisson said, when asked about trying to stop McCoy. "Their receivers block well on the edge and he is tough. They've got a good team and can run the ball. They aren't super fancy in what they do, but they do it well."
Kennett's only score of the second half was a 70-yard touchdown run by Warren with 9:57 left in the fourth quarter.
Dremond Robinson had three rushing touchdowns for Malden in the second half, including two in the third quarter. Robinson had 14 carries for 99 yards. McCoy finished with 16 carries for 146 yards and Coleman carried the ball nine times for 53 yards.
"[Romello] got a little dinged up and he went out the first series of the third quarter," Wyatt said. "Mitchell shared the load in the first half and took over in the third quarter. Then Dremond came in and had a big night. He doesn't ever carry the ball on Friday and came in and did an outstanding job for us."
Weeden was 9 of 17 in the air for 127 yards. He threw for one touchdown, ran for another and threw two interceptions. Warren led all Kennett rushers with seven carries for 80 yards.
It was the last regular-season home game for the eight seniors listed on the Indians' roster.
"We don't have a whole lot of seniors, but the ones we have come ready to play," Adkisson said. "The season hasn't been what they wanted it to or hoped it would be, but they've still worked to try to make this program better."
Kennett (0-8) will travel to play East Prairie (0-8) Friday. Charleston defeated East Prairie 66-0 in Week 8.
"I know East Prairie has had a tough season just like we have had," Adkisson said. "I know they are going to want to win and they will prepare hard. We've got to do that as well. We cannot come in here and have bad practices and expect to win because it won't happen. We've got to prepare, come out fired up and ready to play next week."
Malden (6-2) will host Dexter (1-7) Friday. Park Hills beat Dexter 8-7 in Week 8.
"Huge game," Wyatt said. "It's only my third time to coach against Dexter. The first time I got this job everybody told me 'coach you've got to beat Dexter.' Throw the records out the window. We know they are well-coached and bring a physical brand of football. By no means are we going to take them lightly. We know we've got our hands full."
Malden 67, Kennett 22
MHS 24 16 14 13 - 67
KHS 8 8 0 6 - 22
MAL - Romello McCoy 20 run (McCoy from Riley), 11:44
MAL - McCoy 4 run (Mitchell Coleman run), 8:37
KEN - Harold Weeden 24 pass to Darius Warren (McPherson from Weeden), 4:21
MAL - Coleman 85 return (McCoy run), 4:07
MAL - McCoy 18 run (Dajuan Criglar from Riley), 9:44
KEN - Weeden 3 run (Treyvon Bradford from Weeden), 4:16
MAL - McCoy 7 run (Coleman run), 1:10
MAL - Dremond Robinson 6 run (Robinson run), 8:23
MAL - Robinson 1 run (run failed), 3:14
MAL - Jeremy Jones 77 interception return (Riley kick), 10:56
KEN - Warren 70 run (pass failed), 9:57
MAL - Robinson 7 (run failed), 2:20
|Time of Possession||24:24||23:36|
RUSHING: Malden -Romello McCoy 16-146, Dremond Robinson 14-99, Mitchell Coleman 9-53, Awsten Powell 2-18, Gunner Jones 1-7. Kennett - Harold Weeden 19-48, Darius Warren 7-80, Treyvon Bradford 2-27, Ridge Diffine 2-17. Kendall Jones 1-(-12).
PASSING: Malden - Chapen Riley 2-7-0 43 Kennett - Harold Weeden 9-17-2 127
RECEIVING: Malden - Romello McCoy 2-43. Kennett - Bron McPherson 3-25, Darius Warren 2-41, Treyvon Bradford 2-38, Brandon Meek 1-14, Ridge Diffine 1-9.