COLLINSVILLE – Grove’s premier running back Emmanuel Crawford churned out 345 yards and scored four touchdowns as Grove carved its way through defending 5A State Champion Collinsville defeated the Cardinals 49-21.
Prior to Friday’s game, Grove’s offense was averaging 49.7 points a game and most of that was at the feet of Grove’s workhorse Crawford. The Grove senior was averaging 10 yards every time he touched the ball, rushing for 951 yards and scoring 17 touchdowns.
By the end of the night, Crawford had passed the 1,000-yard mark ending Collinsville’s 21-game winning streak. The high-octane Ridgerunner offense scored on its first five possessions.
Grove drew first blood with a 20-yard touchdown run by Crawford early in the first quarter. Corey Martin booted in the extra point to put the Ridgerunners up 7-0.
Two 15-yard penalties helped Collinsville as quarterback Kaden Rush capped off a 75-yard drive with a 7-yard run while Justice McMath added a point to tie the game 7-7.
Grove struck again at the opening of the second quarter when quarterback Carson Trimble hit Hagen Hacker with a 21-yard touchdown pass in the corner of the endzone. Martin added an extra point to put Grove up 14-7.
A series later Crawford scampered 70 yards for the Grove’s third touchdown pushing him over 1,000 rushing yards. Martin added an extra point as Grove took a 21-7 lead.
The next time Grove touched the ball Crawford received the handoff, weaved through defenders to the right side of the field, made a couple of quick moves and ran 56-yards to push Grove up 28-7.
Trimble showed some track speed and scampered down the field 53 yards to the 10-yard line for a first-and-goal. A penalty and three plays later Trimble hit Hacker for a 10-yard pass to go up 35-7 at halftime.
A scoreless third quarter was plagued with penalties and a missed Grove field goal. Grove finished the night with 15 penalties for 125 yards while Collinsville had two penalties for 15 yards.
At the start of the fourth quarter, Collinsville’s Jack Keith took the ball in from the two-yard line and McMath added the extra point as Collinsville made a dent in the Ridgerunner score 35-14.
Grove quickly responded with a Trimble 3-yard run to increase the lead to 42-14.
In the waning minutes of the game, Collinsville scored on a 29-yard pass from Rush to Henslick and Crawford added his final touchdown for the night on a 1-yard run.
Grove 7 28 0 14 49
Collinsville 7 0 0 14 21