TABOR: Bluejays overmatched by Falcons
Tabor still searching for first victory after 65-17 loss to Friends
It’s no big secret that the Bluejays could really use some confidence and momentum after narrowly dropping their first two football games.
Unfortunately, the Friends Falcons haven’t been much help in that category the past three years — winning all three.
Tabor’s had a knack of starting quick only to have the engine sputter, not to mention the Falcons being able to have their way with the Bluejays.
Outside of leading 7-0 after the first quarter Saturday in Wichita, little else went the Bluejays’ way.
Perhaps the best thing the Bluejays were able to do was pick up 52 yards rushing — 7 yards above what the NAIA’s third-best run defense has allowed.
Other than that, Tabor was only able to roll up 125 total yards while its defense gave up 660 — 168 more than Friends’ season average of 492 — from an eye-popping 81 plays.
It was the Bluejays’ defense that gave them their first and only lead with Sidney Childers recovering a Quentin Benning fumble and taking it in for a 26-yard touchdown.
Falcon quarterback Tim Rozzell was 21-for-27 passing, supplying Friends with five touchdowns and 355 yards — 66 yards passing to Mike Hyde.
Rozzell got over half of his 65 yards rushing, tying the game up with a 34-yard touchdown, a little over a minute into the second quarter.
Friends stretched its lead to 20-7 by the 4:40 mark of the first half with Chris Bollander scoring with a 3-yard run and Rozzell hitting Doug Pierce for a 24-yard score.
Jeran Trotter spearheaded the Falcons’ high-powered ground attack, which punished Tabor for 373 yards, running rampant for 182 yards.
Trotter took off for gains of 64 and 73 yards, setting up Friends for the go-ahead touchdown with a 64-yard run.
Bluejay quarterback Marc Amos was 6-for-17 passing for a season-low 55 yards.
However, Amos did engineer Tabor’s best drive of the game —five plays for 57 yards to reduce the lead to 20-14.
Amos’ 33-yard touchdown run, with just over three minutes left before halftime, briefly gave the Bluejays a breath of life.
The Falcons had the game broken open by halftime, 35-14, scoring two unanswered touchdowns in just over a two-minute span.
Trotter’s only touchdown capped four straight scores by the Falcons, pushing the lead to 49-14 with the 73-yarder midway through the third quarter.
Caleb Washington gave Tabor its biggest highlight — returning a punt 50 yards to give the Bluejays their best starting point of the game at the Falcon 16.
The Bluejays were unable to do anything with the great field position, settling for a 28-yard field goal with 1:47 left in the third quarter.
Friends’ second string tacked on two more touchdowns and a field goal for the 65-17 final.
Tabor returns home Saturday to host the Peru State Bobcats in a 2 p.m. kickoff.
Last modified Sept. 30, 2009