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Mustangs Win 2A State Title

By Craig Lang, Prairie Advocate Sports

Morrison_21 run.tif

Mustang Josh Vos (#21) carries the ball through a host of Trojan tacklers during Saturday’s action in Champaign. Josh ended the game with 173 yards on 27 carries and 3 TDs in the Morrison 22 point victory. View the exclusive video at (PA photo/Craig Lang)

The stands were a sea of red and white as Morrison took the field Friday afternoon at Memorial Stadium in Champaign for the IHSA Class 2A state title football game against Maroa-Forsyth. The field was perfect as was the weather at the 1 pm kickoff time.

Maroa would strike first at the beginning of the contest, marching the ball 84 yards in eight plays with QB Logan Stelzried going into the endzone from 3 yards out to make it 7-0 Maroa.

Morrison senior captain Kyle Janssen admitted he was a little nervous with a start like that. “We kept everybody up and said we could do this. We knew we had to stop the run and not let anybody deep. I think we did a pretty good job of not letting anyone get over us.”
But the Mustangs would respond by scoring the games next 29 points to take control and never looked back. Kyle Janssen got Morrison on the scoreboard first, running in from 35 yards out to tie the score at 7. A pair of Josh Vos second quarter touchdowns made the score 20-7 at the half.

The only scoring in the third quarter came on a Kyle Dermody 23 yard field goal to make the score 23-7 going into quarter number four. Mustang Connor Bealer rambled in from seven yards out to make it Morrison 29 Maroa 7.

M-F found the endzone one more time as Stelzried hit Justin Barnes on a 12 yard scoring strike. Morrison responded with Vos scoring his third touchdown of the contest, going in from 4 yards out to make the final score Morrison 36 and Maroa-Forsyth 14.

“I’m not quite sure it’s settled in yet, but it’s fantastic,” Coach Cory Bielema said. “This group has really worked hard since the end of last season and put it all together. I can’t be any more proud of them. ”The celebration was on as the Mustangs had captured their first ever football state title. The Mustangs were again led by running back Josh Vos, who carried the ball 27 times for 173 yards and three scores. Kyle Janssen had 13 carries for 111 yards and one score. Conner Bealer rushed 7 times for 33 yards, and Andrew Cook took it 7 times for 8 yards.

“It’s amazing,” Morrison senior fullback/linebacker Josh Vos said at the post-game press conference. “It’s one of those experiences you can’t describe.”

The previous three years was frustrating for this team. They took a one-point loss in the semifinals in 2006, lost to the eventual state champion in 2007 during the quarterfinals, and a quadruple-overtime loss in the second round in 2008.

“This will be a special memory being with this whole group,” Vos said. “We’re so close. Our whole team definitely deserves it. So does the City of Morrison and our fans.”Morrison ends their championship season with a perfect 14-0 record while dropping the Trojans to a record of 11-3.

Morrison_defense.tif The Mustang defense swarmed Trojan running backs all afternoon, holding M-F to just 167 yards on 35 carries. View the exclusive video at (PA photo/Tom Kocal)
Morrison_21 TD.tif With great blocking from the Morrison line, Josh Vos scores his 3rd TD of the afternoon. View the exclusive video at (PA photo/Tom Kocal)
Morrison_33 TD.tif Conner Bealer (33) scores from 7 yards out early in the fourth quarter, giving the Mustangs a 29-7 lead. View the exclusive video at (PA photo/Tom Kocal)
Morrison_Crowd.tif The stands at Memorial Stadium in Champaign were a sea of red and white on Saturday afternoon. The Morrison football faithful were out in full force to root the Mustangs on to the victory. View the exclusive video at (PA photo/Craig Lang)
Morrison_incomplete.tif Morrison running back Kyle Janssen (44) snags a pass from QB Andrew Cook over the out-streched arms of Alex Chiligiris (33), but M-F’s Justin Barnes (2) knocked it out of Janssen’s hands at the last second. View the exclusive video at (PA photo/Tom Kocal)

View the Post Game Footage Here

Video by Tom Kocal
Produced by Brent Simmons