Both teams combined to commit 25 penalties on the night for 202 yards. The Bearcats were flagged for 14 penalties for 120 yards.
"We committed the most penalties, I think, all year," said Dexter head coach Aaron Pixley. "That just shows that we had a lack of focus tonight and an inattention to detail."
While Dexter did not impress on Friday night, they had already secured the Class 3, District 1 title and were hoping to play well for a half and come away from the game injury-free. A date with Class 3, District 2 winner, Ste. Genevieve awaited Dexter and one wondered if the Bearcats were looking past Perryville.
The Bearcats did not have any major injuries but did play their first stringers for the entire contest.
"It could have been a trap game for us tonight," said Pixley. "The kids were ready to play and we had no talk of Ste. Genevieve the entire week."
The Pirates came out with full attention devoted to Dexter star running back Alex Becker. Perryville loaded the line of scrimmage and had eight defenders in the box at all times.
Becker rushed 29 times for 127 yards. Becker worked for every inch on the night as he averaged 4.4 yards per rush.
"Our defense played wonderful tonight," said Perryville head coach Rick Chastain. "We had a 0-9 team going in and played the district champs within six. Give all the credit to my players and coaches."
The Pirates defense played an excellent game but the Bearcats defense would not be outdone. Dexter did not allow Perryville to get positive yardage in the rushing game and the Pirates finished with minus-13 yards combined on the ground.
"Our defense played excellent tonight and gave us a chance to win," said Pixley. "Our offense put the defense in a spot you don't want to be in. Defense responded and basically won the game for us."
Perryville got only seven first downs all game and punted the football nine times. Of the seven first downs for the Pirates, two were obtained by penalties.
Dexter started out the game by running with Becker but the Pirate defense stuffed him in the first quarter.
Every rushing attempt by Becker, he was met by a Perryville defender who put on a good hit.
"Perryville is noted for hard-nosed kids," said Chastain. "Our defenses are known for putting a lick on a running back."
While Dexter was stifled on the ground early in the first half, the Bearcats went to the air with junior quarterback Josh Stevens who started slow, but ended up with a good night with 12 completions for 134 yards.
Tight end Josh Davis of the Bearcats had a couple of receptions to try and loosen the Perryville defense.
Davis made some acrobatic catches on the night and had three receptions for 33 yards.
Dexter started to have some drives in Perryville territory in the second quarter only to be undone by penalties.
Some big plays by the Bearcats were nullified by holding or blocking in the back penalties which stymied Dexter all night.
If penalties did not stop the Bearcats, their inability to convert on third down did not help matters.
On the night, Dexter converted only one of 11 attempts on third down. In addition, the Bearcats committed three turnovers.
"Tonight was a disappointment," said Pixley. "Penalties and turnovers killed us. We did not execute on offense at all tonight."
The Bearcats finally broke through on the scoreboard at 8:03 in the fourth quarter, as Becker scored on a 1-yard plunge. The PAT was no good and the Bearcats went up 6-0.
Perryville could not mount any type of threat late in the fourth and Dexter ran the clock out for the 6-0 victory.
Besides Becker's rushing game, Justin Foushee gained 23 yards on four carries. Zach Ventura chipped in with eight yards rushing on the night.
Stevens completed his 12 completions to nine different receivers.
Other leading receivers besides Davis, were Andrew Stuever who caught a pass for 22 yards and Foushee had one reception for 18 yards.
For the Pirates, Joe Kreitler led the team in rushing with 22 yards on 11 carries. Travis Brown was the next leading rusher with 11 yards on five carries.
Schilling had little time to complete many passes for the Pirates and was under duress all night. Schilling attempted 26 passes while only completing nine for 77 yards.
Ryan Regelsperger made some tough catches and came away with seven receptions good for 42 yards. Marcus Walton caught two passes for 35 yards.
Linebacker Tyler Bauwens and safety Regelsperger tied for the lead in tackles for Perryville with 10 tackles apiece. Kreitler was next on the tackling chart with six.
The Bearcats were led in tackles by senior linebacker Austin Matthews who recorded eight. Fellow linebacker Davis was second with seven. Defensive lineman David Hessling also had seven tackles and recorded one sack good for a eight yard loss.
Drew Satterfield led Dexter in sacks with two for a loss of 14 yards. Foushee recorded one sack good for an 18-yard loss from his defensive end position.
Eric Rinehart and Zach Ventura each had an interception for the Bearcats.
While Pixley was not happy with his team's performance, he did praise Perryville for their spirited effort.
"Give all credit to Perryville," said Pixley. "They hit us hard and played very physical football. They sold out on every defensive play and we knew we were in for a battle."
Dexter (7-3) will host Ste. Genevieve (9-1) on Wednesday night at 7 p.m. in a Class 3 sectional contest.