Tigers go 3-1 with victory
FREEBURG — It may have been a long trip to southwestern Illinois for the Paris Tiger football team, but Coach Jeremy Clodfelder’s squad came to play, taking a resounding 42-19 victory over the Midgets.
With the win, the Tigers improve to 3-1 overall. Paris remains 2-1 in the Little Illini Conference. The Freeburg contest is a non-conference game.
Following the long road trip, the Tigers wasted little time in getting on the scoreboard.
Paris won the coin toss and deferred to the second half. The Tiger defense held Freeburg to three-and-out on the Midgets’ opening possession and forcing them to punt deep in their own territory. The Midget punter mishandled the snap, but recovered the ball but the Tigers took over on downs at the Freeburg seven yard line.
Two plays later, Hadon Board barreled his way into the end zone from four yards out to give Paris a 6-0 lead. The point after was good and the Tigers led 7-0 just three minutes into the game.
On their next position, the Midgets went on a 10-play drive beginnng at their own 20-yard line. The Tiger defense stiffened on a crucial fourth and 9, and Paris took over at their own 20.
Quarterback Brody Spencer capped a seven-play drive with an 18-yard scramble for the second touchdown of the first quarter for the Tigers. The point after by Jacob Wesley once again split the uprights and Paris led 14-0.
Another Freeburg three-and-out thanks to tough play by the Tiger defense forced the Midgets to punt again. Paris began its third possession with excellent field position at the Tiger 44.
Four plays later, Spencer hit a wide-open wide receiver Kayin Lawson for a 38-yard touchdown. Wesley kicked the point after giving the Tigers a 21-0 lead.
Freeburg scored their first points of the evening on their next drive, moving the ball 65-yards one 12 plays. The extra point attempt bounced off the left upright, and the Tigers held a 21-6 lead.
With 3:34 left in the second quarter, the Tigers worked to add more points before the half. Spencer found Josh Willmoth in the right corner of the end zone for his second touchdown pass of the game giving the Tigers a healthy 27-6 lead at halftime.
Paris had the first possession to start the second half and the Tigers made the most of it, driving 78 yards. Spencer once again found Lawson for their second scoring hook up of the night, this time from 12 yards out to give the Tigers a 35-6 lead.
Neither team could find the end-zone the rest of the third quarter, but Angus Beabout scored from one yard out on the first play of the fourth, to give the Tigers a commanding 42-6 lead.
Paris gave up up a pair of touchdowns in the remaining eight minutes of the game, but these points were surrendered with the Paris second-stringers against Freeburg’s first unit.
Beabout had a huge night on the ground for the Tigers as he carried the ball 17 times for 177 yards and a touchdown. Spencer gained 54 yards on nine carries and also scored once. Caleb Mullenix carried once for 22 yards while Coy Landrum carried five times for 15 yards. Board carried once for four yards and a TD. Blake Quinn carried five times for one yard.
Spencer completed 8 of 17 passes good for 139 yards and three touchdowns. Lawson hauled in four of those passes for 92 yards and a pair of TD’s. Mullenix grabbed two for 28 yards. Willmoth had two catches for 19 yards and a touchdown.
“I’m very proud of the way we handled the loss last week (to Red Hill), turned the page, and came down here and took care of business,” Tiger Coach Jeremy Clodfelder said following the game. “We stopped off at McKendree College on the way down and stretched and did our walk-through. We got off the bus in Freeburg ready to play.”
Friday night is Homecoming for Paris High School. It’s also a huge game as far as the LIC is concerned, as the Marshall Lions come to town. The Tigers have not defeated the Lions since 1997.
Kickoff is set for 7 p.m. at Tiger Stadium.