East Prairie packed the home side of the bleachers and were treated to a one-
two rushing performance as Paris Tipler and Dez Johnson combined to rush for 493 yards and scored seven touchdowns on the ground. Overall, the Eagles rushed for 507 yards on the afternoon.
While Tipler and Johnson got the glory, East Prairie head coach Corey Adkisson praised his offensive line for providing huge running lanes for his backs to run through.
"The O-line worked hard this week," said Adkisson. "After last week when they didn't play well against Fredericktown, Coach (Chad) Jamerson and Coach (Gary) Scott worked them hard all week and the line came out ready to play today. They (Tipler and Johnson) are hard runners but they would be the first to tell you that the offensive line makes them go."
In addition to the offensive line, Adkisson praised his receivers for blocking well on the edges and for being unselfish.
Chaffee started the scoring out as quarterback Michael Lee plunged forward for a 1-yard touchdown on a quarterback sneak.
The Eagles shot themselves in the foot earlier in the drive as Chaffee's drive was stalled and were forced to punt on fourth-and-5. The Eagles were penalized five yards for running into the kicker and the Red Devils were awarded the first down.
On the next play, Lee hooked up with senior wideout Geoff Mirly for a 30-
point conversion on a Lee run and were ahead 8-0 at 7:14 in the first quarter.
The Eagles answered on their first drive as Tipler scored the first of his four touchdowns on the game with a 22-yard run to paydirt. East Prairie also tacked on two points as Riley Hadenfelt ran in the conversion.
Tipler scored his second touchdown on the Eagles second possession of the game as he ran around and through the Chaffee defense for a 61-yard touchdown run at 1:32 of the first quarter. After the two-point conversion, East Prairie led 16-8 after one quarter of play.
Chaffee tied the score in the second quarter as Lee ran straight up the gut and scored from six yards out making the score 16-16 after Chaffee converted the two-point attempt.
East Prairie didn't let the Red Devil faithful cheer for long as on the first play from scrimmage for the Eagles resulted in a 64-yard touchdown run for Johnson. Eagles led 24-16 at 7:42 of the second quarter.
Chaffee could not get much going on the ground as they rushed for 145 yards on 41 carries.
"We need to be more consistent with our play," said Chaffee head coach Charlie Vickery. "Sometimes we struggle running the football because we really lack team speed and we don't play physical."
After the Eagles forced Chaffee to punt one of their six punts on the day, East Prairie marched down the field and Tipler scored on a 12-yard run making the score 32-15 with 5:48 left in the second quarter.
Chaffee did not lay down and fought all day long and with 3:41 left in the second quarter, Vickery brought out his trick bag and ran a reverse pass as Jerrod Steger took the reverse and found receiver Andrew Hendrix wide open for a 40-yard touchdown reception. The Red Devils trailed 32-22 at halftime.
Although tight at half, Chaffee knew they had problems with Tipler and Johnson who had 168 and 129 yards respectively going into halftime.
Sure enough, the dynamic duo struck in the third quarter as Tipler scored on a 41-yard run and Johnson hit the end zone from 28 yards out. The Eagles led 48-22 going into the fourth quarter.
"We can't stop anybody on defense," said Vickery. "We have to play more physical football if we expect to win games like these."
Johnson scored the last of his three rushing touchdowns at the start of the fourth quarter as he twisted and turned, good for a 54-yard touchdown. With 11:48 left in the game, East Prairie led 55-22.
The Red Devils did not go away quietly as they put up 13 unanswered points in the fourth. First, sophomore Hendrix scored from 14 yards out on a touchdown run and then Vickery used the same reverse pass he used in the second quarter, this time Steger found Garrett Pepple open for a 45-yard touchdown pass. Final score was 55-35 in favor of the Eagles.
Tipler finished the afternoon with 268 yards on 15 carries and Johnson was not to be outdone as he complied 225 yards on 16 carries.
East Prairie was one-dimensional on homecoming as they had no passing yards but quarterback Mitchell Winchester did throw an interception.
The Red Devils featured a nice aerial attack led by quarterback Lee who threw for 117 yards on nine completions. Wideout Steger took two reverses and threw to open receivers good for two touchdowns and 85 yards passing.
Hendrix caught three passes for 65 yards and Zach McDaniel had five receptions good for 57 yards. Mirly caught two passes for 35 yards and Pepple had a reception for 45 yards.
Chaffee was led on the ground by Kent Courtney who rushed 24 times for 82 yards. Lee and Hendrix chipped in 31 yards apiece on the ground.
On defense, East Prairie was led in tackling by Strand who finished with 10 tackles from his D-line position. Stalker also had a good day on the defensive line as he racked up seven tackles. The Eagles' linebackers were not outdone as sophomore Tony Jones and Hadenfelt had nine and seven tackles respectively.
The Eagles got good run support from their defensive backfield as William O'Guin had six tackles and Zach Secoy had five. Kennith Dixon had the lone sack for the Eagles good for a loss of six yards.
The defensive line led the way for Chaffee as juniors Brad Daugherty and Bryan Walker led the Red Devils in tackles with eight. Defensive end Mirly also had eight tackles on the day. Kippy Lawson made it a clean sweep for the D-
line as he was next on the tackling list with six.
Aaron Volkerding had an interception for Chaffee and returned it 12 yards. McDaniel had a fumble recovery for the Red Devils.
While pleased with the victory, Adkisson knows improvements must be made before districts roll around.
"We have to clean our play up," said Adkisson, as his team received eight penalties on the game. "Too many penalties. Got to get some discipline. We have the toughest part of our schedule coming up and we have to get focused."
East Prairie (3-2) will remain at home as they host Mississippi County rival Charleston Bluejays next Friday at 7 p.m.
Chaffee (0-6) will be in search for their first victory as they will travel to Malden to face the Greenwave next Friday with kickoff at 7 p.m.