Smithville gets its revenge
By Stephen Bubalo PrepsKC staff writer
It’s said that revenge is a dish best served cold.
Well, Mother Nature took care of the cold part and Smithville handed out some revenge, eliminating Excelsior Springs from the playoffs – a year after the Tigers did the same thing to the Warriors – with an impressive 37-14 win Thursday night.
“Revenge, revenge, revenge was on our minds,” Warriors senior running back Zach Parmenter said. “The whole thing for us was revenge. I’ve wanted to play them all year.”
And Parmenter played like someone who got his wish, as he was a force to be reckoned with, especially in the second half.
Smithville led 10-7 at halftime – Parmenter even kicked the go-ahead 31-yard field goal as time expired – but found themselves behind 14-10 after Excelsior Springs scored quickly on a 32-yard touchdown pass from Austin Lewis to Nick Masoner to start the second half.
But the Warriors response was just as quick as five plays later Parmenter broke a pair of tackles and rumbled 41 yards for the score.
“We came right back and showed a lot of character,” Smithville head coach Greg Smith said of his team matching the Tigers’ touchdown with one of their own. “Nobody was hanging their head. We put our chin down and got to work.”
The Tigers fumbled three plays into their next drive, and Smithville would take advantage. A fourth-down conversion by Parmenter help set up quarterback Cory Marmet’s 1-yard touchdown run to make it 23-14.
The Warriors would capitalize again when Excelsior Springs fumbled on the first play of its next drive, as this time Parker Bealue scored from 27 yards outs.
In a span of a little more than 8 minutes the Tigers saw their 14-10 lead turn into a 30-14 deficit.
“Mistakes. Our mistakes put us in some tough binds and then it gets you out of your game plan. That’s how the game flips,” Tigers head coach Andy Sims said.
“The difference in the halves is that we capitalized on turnovers and we made a commitment to run it right at them,” Smith said of the second half. “Zach was incredible in the second half and the offensive line controlled the line of scrimmage.”
To put the game away – after another Tiger turnover, this time an interception – the Warriors used a long 12-play drive capped by a 2-yard Bealue score. Parmenter racked up 31 yards on the drive, 12 coming on a bruising third-and-10 conversion in which he delivered as many hits as he took.
“That was maybe as determined a run as I’ve seen in high school in the last 18 years,” Smith said.
“This is my senior year,” added Parmenter. “You have to play every game like it’s your last. Every play counts.”
The Tigers did their best to make every play count in what was an impressive comeback season, finishing with a 7-3 mark after a difficult four-year stretch, something Sims emphasized to his team afterward.
“We had seven wins in the four years prior to this season,” he said. “We’re not going to let tonight damper what was a great season. I told them, ‘don’t let one loss determine what you’ve done for four years.’”
Meanwhile, the beat goes on for the Warriors, as they get another shot at revenge, this time when they travel to second-ranked Savannah Wednesday night. The Savages handed Smithville a 21-13 loss in week three.
And you can bet Parmenter doesn’t mind the underdog role.
“We’ll be looking for revenge again,” Parmenter said. “We have nothing to lose. Why not play like you have nothing to lose?”
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