Cardinals make history, win fifth consecutive State Title

 
Cameron Mellor (@CamMellor)
February 24, 2015

 

 

Winning a State Championship is one thing in high school football. Winning consecutive titles is another.

 

Matching a feat that had been done only once before by winning five in a row is in another stratosphere.

 

That’s exactly what Webb City High School did this past season, winning their fifth consecutive State Championship in Missouri’s Class 4. Their 5th straight title matched Valle Catholic as the only team’s in Missouri’s history to win five state titles in a row.

 

The Cardinals have now won 28 consecutive games dating back to last year and head coach John Roderique now has a combined 222-19 record in 18 years at the helm of Webb City. His 92% winning percentage ranks him as winningest coach in Missouri high school football history by percentage.

 

Webb City has now qualified for the playoffs in 14 consecutive seasons and under Roderique, the Cardinals have won 10 of the school’s 13 state titles. They have won 18 straight MHSAA playoff games to date.

 

In 2014, the Cardinals seemed to be a team on a mission to capture the school’s 13th championship, shutting out Missouri Class 5’s Carthage in the season opener, 21-0.

 

The 21-point victory over the Tigers would remain as the slimmest margin of victory through the entire season as the Cardinals would continually perform well on offense, defense and special teams.

 

Looking even more impressive in their week two matchup, Webb City traveled to face Class 6 opponent – Rockhurst. Led by quarterback and Missouri Gatorade Player of the Year, T.J. Green, the Hawklets would advance to the Class 6 State Championship game in 2014, despite being handed a loss at the hands of the Cardinals, 40-14, for Rockhurst’s lone blemish of the regular season. The Hawklets would lose the Class 6 State Championship to Christian Brothers College, 31-24, for only their second loss of the season.

 

The state of Arkansas’ highest classified division sent perennial contender Har-Ber to take on Webb City in a week three matchup. The Cardinals were unfazed by the Arkansas power, dismantling the Wildcats, 42-13.

 

After defeating Class 5’s Republic, 49-14, Webb City took on its fourth team from a higher class when they hosted Missouri Class 5 Nixa. The Cardinals impressed not only offensively, but defensively, holding the Eagles to just 140 yards and holding them off the scoreboard until the waning stages of the fourth quarter in their 47-7 victory.  

 

Like Rockhurst, Nixa would advance to their respective State Championship game, but fall short, 25-22 to Battle High School.

 

Webb City would finish the regular season with victories over Willard (46-15), Neosho (48-0), Ozark (38-7) and Branson (42-5) before entering the MHSAA Playoffs at 9-0.

 

The Cardinals opened up the postseason with a bang, scoring the most points of the season, a total of 71 in their 71-0 shutout victory over McDonald County. Maquel Harbin and Trent Parra each returned an interception for a touchdown in the first quarter against the Mustangs as defensive points would be a continued trait in the playoffs.

 

In the second round matchup against Bolivar for Webb City, Harbin would also record a ‘pick-six’, this time in the second quarter of the 56-7 blowout over the Liberators.

 

Webb City would jump out to a 35-0 lead over Carl Junction before trouncing the Bulldogs, 42-12 to advance to the quarterfinals. Against Harrisonville in the state quarters, Drake Humphrey secured a fumble recovery for a touchdown in the Cardinals 35-0 victory.

 

In the state semifinals, the Cardinals faced off against the high-powered offense of Kearney. The Wildcats averaged 33.6 points per game in 2014 but were held to a mere seven points in their 38-7 ousting at the hands of Webb City.

 

With their victory over Kearney in the semifinals, the Cardinals advanced to their 15th state championship game appearance in school history, hunting for their fifth consecutive title.

 

 

Equally impressive as that feat, the Cardinals defense had single-handedly outscored their first five opponents of the postseason, 30-26, recording five defensive touchdowns in the five games, including three against McDonald County.

 

In the Missouri Class 4 State Championship ‘Show Me Bowl,’ Webb City would square off against Central High School from Cape Girardeau. The Tigers would be playing in the school’s first ever state championship appearance.

 

It however, wouldn’t look like their first ever appearance on the big stage in the first quarter as Central jumped out to a quick 14-0 lead at the end of the first quarter. Quarterback Peyton Montgomery rushed for two quick scores as Webb City couldn’t muster a sustained drive in the opening 12 minutes.

 

That all would change however as the Cardinals, led by their own quarterback Tyson Roderique, would score four quick times in the second quarter en route to a 27-14 halftime lead.


Roderique punched in two short touchdown rushes of his own before running back Keaton Burroughs scored from 1-yard out with 0:35 seconds remaining, to give Webb City a 21-14 lead.

 

With just 0:18 seconds remaining Central's Montgomery would be intercepted by Harbin as he tried to force a pass. Roderique would hit all-around athlete Kiante Hardin for 30 yards on the very next play to seemingly steal the remaining momentum and take a two-possession lead into the break.

 

The Tigers would get no closer than that in the second half, allowing Hardin to rush for a score from 15 yards out. Central would score one last time on a 38-yard pass from Montgomery to Jalen Reddin before Webb City would add two insurance touchdowns in the fourth quarter.

 

The 48-21 final would cap a perfect season for the Cardinals and their fifth consecutive state title.

 

 

The Cardinals, despite losing several seniors from 2014, including Hardin who will attend Minnesota next fall to play for former Webb City head coach Jerry Kill, will return their quarterback in Roderique. With a returning signal-caller and the state's all time winningest head coach in terms of percentage, there is no doubt the Cardinals will be ready when the fall season starts. 

 

Webb City will look to become the first ever team in Missouri high school football history to win six consecutive state titles as they will enter the 2015 fall season as arguably the state’s No. 1 team.

 

Offensive stat leaders

Rushing: Tyler Davison (1247 yards)

Passing: Tyson Roderique (1110 yards)

Receiving: Kiante Hardin (678 yards)

All-Purpose: Kiante Hardin (1290 yards)

Touchdowns: Keaton Burroughs (20)

Rush attempts: Tyler Davison (150 carries)

Receptions: Kiante Hardin (33 catches)

 

Defensive stat leaders

Total tackles: Kolesen Crane (54)

Tackles for loss: Kolesen Crane (12.5)

Sacks: Austin Carter (5)

Interceptions: Maquel Harbin (6)

Pass break ups: Kiante Hardin (13)

Fumbles forced: Drake Humphrey (3)

Fumbles recovered: Tyson Roderique (4)

 

Team statistics

Total scoring: 663 points

Opponent scoring: 122

Total offense: 5868 yards

Total rushing yards: 4663 yards

Total passing yards: 1205 yards

Opponent offense: 2559 yards

Opponent rushing yards: 1443 yards

Opponent passing yards: 1116 yards

Third down conversions: 49.7% (71/143)

Opponent third down conversions: 24.9% (45/181)

Turnover differential: +19 (19 interceptions, 18 fumbles)