The MVAOCOU Rams traveled to Marcus Friday night to open the 2019 football season and came away with a 20-6 victory over MMCRU Royals.

The Rams defense held the Royal was one play away from a shutout in their opening game, and held MMCRU scoreless until the final play of the game.

The Rams scored on their first drive of the game after holding the Royals out of the end zone on their first possession. On fourth and 23 on the Rams 30-yard line, Rams defensive lineman Hunter Soll picked up a Royals fumble and returned the fumble to the Royals 33-yard line to give the Rams great field position and set the offense up for their first scoring drive of the new season.

On their first play from scrimmage, Rams quarterback Brady Seuntjens connected with wide receiver Kolby Nutt for a 28-yard pass that gave the Rams first and 10 at the Royals 5-yard line. A negative 1-yard run made it second and goal at the 6-yard line, and then Seuntjens ran a keeper that scored the Rams’s first season first touchdown. The two-point conversion run failed, keeping the score 6-0 with 4:40 left in the first quarter.

Defense was the name of the game until the second half. MVAOCOU put another six points on the scoreboard with seven seconds remaining in the third quarter when Seuntjens connected with wide receiver Drew Gothier on a 15-yard touchdown pass to give the Rams a 12-0 lead. The two-point conversion pass was denied by the Royals on an interception in the end zone.

The third quarter scoring drive began at the Rams 35-yard line and was highlighted by a 17-yard Seuntjens run to give the Rams a first down in the red zone on the Royals 18-yard line. Two plays later the Rams were in the end zone.

The Rams defense continued to shine, forcing MMCRU to punt twice and turn the ball over on downs on their next three offensive possessions, giving the MVAOCOU offense a chance to put together a 35-yard scoring drive late in the fourth quarter.

On fourth down and 12 to go at the Royals 37-yard line, Seuntjens connected with Gothier for a 28-yard pass to give the Rams first and goal at the 9-yard line, then fullback Cayden Henderson put the game out of reach on the next play with a 9-yard touchdown run to make it 18-0 with 50.3 seconds left in the game, then a Kolby Scott two-point run made it 20-0.

The Royals got the ball back at their 36-yard line on the ensuing kickoff, and finally got on the board on the final play of the game when quarterback KC Nicks scrambled to the right side of the field, then broke left across the grain of the Rams defense to run for a 53-yard touchdown on the final play from scrimmage to make the final score 20-6 in favor of the Rams.

The Rams offense gained a total of 249 yards in the game with 100 yards coming through the air with Seuntjens connecting on seven of 18 passes. Hendersen was the leading rusher for the Rams with 88 yards on 12 carries. Logan Blume had 32 yards on three carries.

The Rams defense gave up a total of 198 yards in the game with 53 of those yards coming on the final play of the game. The Royals Braeden Kamphoff was 10 of 16 passing for 97 yards, and he was also MMCRU’s leading rusher with 36 yards on 18 carries.

Leading the Rams on the defense was Kolby Scott with 9.5 tackles, Blume with 6.5 tackles, Kalvin Prell with 6 tackles, and Nutt and Seuntjens with 4.0 tackles each.

The Rams will play at home Friday night, taking on the Tri-Center Trojans on Bill Mac Field in Mapleton. Kick-off is at 7 p.m.

1 2 3 4 F

MVAOCOU 6 0 6 8 20

MMCRU 0 0 0 6 6

MVAOCOU 1-0/0-0 Conference

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