Mustangs Jerome runs for 297 yards
November 02, 2013, 1:00 am by Mark Goodson
By Mark Goodson
Highlander Sports Editor
Marble Falls continues its dream of making the playoffs after dominating the second half of a 56-38 win over the Dripping Springs Tigers at Dripping Springs Friday night.
Senior running back Keith Jerome cashed in with a career-best 297 yards rushing on 27 carries and scored seven times.
He had four receptions for 66 yards and scored his final touchdown on a 41-yard screen pass from Brennen Wooten down the sideline with six seconds left in the third quarter.
Neither team scored in the final quarter of the offensive showcase, which included 94 points, 1,115 yards of offense and 48 first downs.
Dripping Springs showed some spunk despite losing for the seventh time in nine starts this season.
The night belonged to the Mustang senior running back, the offensive line and a defense that made adjustments at halftime to take control.
Marble Falls (4-5 overall and 2-3) will face Leander (4-5, 2-3) this week in a 7:30 p.m. kickoff at Mustang Stadium with the final playoff spot on the line in District 25-4A.
Jerome scored on runs of 1, 49, 3, 75, 25 and 4 yards. Four of his runs in the game were for 25 yards or more.
"When they block like that it allows me to run like that,’’ Jerome said of the team’s offensive line of Hunter Dooley, Chace Fry, Sam Kohutek, Drake Harkins and Ryan Becker. "I got a little tired, but you don’t let that bother you.’’
Jerome had 13 of his carries and 189 yards in the first half when both teams were rolling in their uptempo pace. The teams combined for four scores in the final three minutes of the second quarter.
The Mustangs were down, 31-21, with 2:56 left in the second quarter when Dripping Springs standout kicker Matthew Wylie nailed a 25-yarder to cap off a 14-play, 69-yard drive.
Jerome busted a 75-yard run up the middle on Marble Falls first play of the next possession to start the Mustangs’ comeback.
The teams traded two more scores with Dripping quarterback T.J. Coble hitting Zach Zamora for 36 yards after the Mustangs fumbled a punt to continue a Tigers’ drive.
In less than a minute, Wooten put together an 8-play, 75-yard drive hitting Zuri Buchanan on pass across the middle of the Dripping Springs defense to give the Mustangs momentum going into the lockerroom at half.
Buchanan’s touchdown came with 12 seconds left in the half. Marble Falls trailed, 338-35 at halftime.
Marble Falls coaches made adjustments at halftime and used a solid, six-play, 51-yard march to open the third quarter to take the lead for good. Jerome broke loose on a fourth-and-one play behind right guard Harkins for the score.
"It was unbelievable,’’ Marble Falls coach Todd Dodge said. "We kept playing hard and making plays. The defensive staff did a great job of making adjustments at halftime.’’
After taking the lead, the defense dug in while Dripping Springs tried to establish the run with Bobby Credeur. The Tigers picked up two first downs before quarterback Coble tried a pass down the middle when he had success in the first half.
Mustang senior safety Steven Petrosky picked off the pass and made a determined return to the 43. A 15-yard penalty against the Mustangs pushed the ball back to the 28.
The Mustangs covered the 72 yards in six plays with first-down pickups on completions to Kylen Sconning and Buchanan for big plays. Jerome bulled his way for four yards and a facemask penalty on a Dripping Springs tackler pushed the ball to the nine. Jerome scored two plays later going up the middle for four yards.
The extra point by Alejandro Osornio gave the Mustangs a 49-38 lead and the momentum.
The defense stood strong again as Dripping Springs netted 19 yards on its next possession before punting.
Marble Falls took over with 1:56 left in the third quarter and drove 52-yard in seven plays, overcoming a pair of big penalties. Jerome took the swing pass down he sideline in front of the Marble Falls bench for the final score.
At halftime, the teams had combined for 650 yards of offense.
Dripping Springs southpaw quarterback Coble was 14 of 18 for 294 yards in the first half. After the adjustments, he was three of 11 for 55 yards and no points.
The Tigers receiving tandem of Zach Zamora and Chance Callihan wre lethal in the first half.
Dripping Springs also had a pick six by sophomore Ethan Fernea in the first half to give the Tigers a 14-point cushion with 34 seconds left in the first quarter.
For complete coverage, please read Tuesday’s Highlander.
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