Marshals open with 37-6 win over Ballard

The Marshals prepare to run onto the field for the first time in the 2019 season Friday against Ballard Memorial.

Marshall County and Ballard Memorial met in the third game of the season last year, amassing nearly 1,000 yards of offense between the two teams and a final score of 70-52, setting a new single-game scoring record. Friday’s season-opener at home against the Bombers was not a repeat of last year’s offensive battle but the Marshals came away with a nice 37-6 win to open 2019.

Most of the Marshals 239 yards of offense came on the ground – 214 yards on 35 carries – while the defense held the Bombers to 102 yards of total offense.

“A pretty complete ballgame I felt on both sides of the football”, Head Coach Evan Merrick said. “We were able to establish what we wanted to do in the running game and on defense, I felt like we were pretty solid.”

The Marshals had the ball five times in the first half and scored on each of the five possessions, starting with a 45 yard drive that found the end zone on a three yard run by senior Cody Sorrells. Sophomore kicker, Talon Smothers, added the extra point for the 7-0 lead, at 7:45 in the first quarter.

The second touchdown came with just over a minute left in the first quarter, a 52 yard drive highlighted by a 25 yard pass from sophomore quarterback Quinn Smith to senior Ty Buchmeier. Smothers tacked on the extra point to give the Marshals a 14-0 lead.

Sophomore Quinn Smith (11) will lead the Marshals offense at quarterback this season.

Seconds into the second quarter, Sorrells scored on an 11 yard run, the extra point good by Smothers and the Marshals went up 21-0.

A 79 yard drive was capped off with a three yard touchdown run by senior Luke Wyatt at 5:35 in the second quarter and Smothers made it four straight PATs for a 28-0 Marshall County lead. Smothers converted his first field goal of the season, a 40 yarder with 39 seconds left in the first half, to put the Marshals up 31-0 at halftime.

Smith scored on a two yard quarterback keeper in the third quarter, the point after attempt failed, for a 37-0 Marshals lead and a running clock the rest of the game. Ballard County found the end zone with 4:11 to go on a 24 yard keeper by quarterback Trevor Howard, the point after attempt failed.

Merrick said the team had a lot of confidence going into Friday’s game and they are going to enjoy the win, but have a lot of work ahead of them to get ready for next week’s game against Madisonville-North Hopkins, a 41-0 winner Friday over Union County.

Ballard        0    0   0    6
Marshall 14  31  37  37

Offense: Ballard 102, Marshall 239
Rushing yards: Ballard 95/24 carries, Marshall 214/35 carries
Ballard: Trevor Howard 4/27, Hargrove 5/22, Trenton Howard 9/20
Marshall: Wyatt 11/95, Buchmeier 5/54, Sorrells 4/25, Rayburn 3/18, Utley 2/15
Passing yards: Ballard 1 for 7, Marshall 1 for 25
Marshall: Smith 1/9 25 yards – Receptions: Buchmeier 1/25

Senior Dylan Rayburn (3) picked up 18 yards on three carries in the Marshals 37-6 win Friday over Ballard Memorial.
Junior Griffin Darnall (15) wrapped up Ballard County’s Logan Hargrove (25) and stripped the ball in Friday’s Hall of Fame game to open the 2019 season.
Marshall County Head Coach Evan Merrick (left) presented WCBL Sports Director, Jeff Waters, with this season’s honorary captain’s jersey before Friday’s season opener.
The cheerleaders kept the Marshall County students and fans in the spirit of the game.
Cross Country officially kicked off their season with the annual Run-a-Thon to raise money for the team, running laps throughout the game.
The Marching Marshals showed off their early season hard work with a performance of their show during halftime.
The dance team added to the sideline entertainment with performances throughout Friday’s first home game.