On Friday, October 18th, the Grape Creek Eagles rolled into town fresh off an 8-6 defeat at the hands of TLCA. The win just so happened to be TLCA’s first of the year. Despite some hard to swallow turnovers, Ballinger did not struggle at any point to dominate the game in route to a 33-6 victory.
Nobody had a dominating performance for the Bearcats on offense. Weston Rollwitz only had one catch after torching the Bangs secondary the week before. Ballinger had a short field advantage most of the game and Coach Lipsey was content to pound the ball with Cooper Bean, Tyler Vaughn and Beau Perkins. Vaughn was able to spread the ball to five different receivers and Braden Bowman led the team with 33 receiving yards.
Cooper had another strong performance with 82 yards, but the surprise of the night was Beau Perkins. Beau caught a 10 yard pass for a 3rd down conversion early in the game. On just two carries Perkins was third on the team in yards, showing a blend of explosiveness and power that can be matched by few players on the Ballinger squad. I think we can expect to see more from Beau down the stretch of the season as it just gives Ballinger another weapon to use.
Players of the Game vs Grape Creek:
Cooper Bean paced the offense in rushing with 82 yards and led the team in tackles. Cooper also had two fumble recoveries.
Tyler Vaughn in his second straight start led Ballinger to a win with 104 passing yards, 58 rushing yards and 2 rushing touchdowns. Tyler also had an interception on defense.
Eric Toliver and Fernando Falcon had a big play when Eric blocked a punt and Fernando recovered it in the endzone for a Bearcat touchdown.
Weston Rollwitz was solid on the defensive end all night. He had 5 solo tackles, a pass breakup and returned an interception in the endzone on a two point conversion attempt 102 yards for 2 Ballinger points.
Adam Winn had a somewhat quiet night on defense, but it was on offense where he made his presence felt. Pulling as a lead blocker on multiple runs, Winn absolutely mauls defenders down the field. He had the key block leading the way on Vaughns long TD run.
Who to Watch against Merkel:
The Ballinger offensive line. Ballinger has been airing the ball out less and less as the season progresses. It looks like the offensive identity for the later part of the season and moving into the playoffs is a power run team. Leading the way is a big, powerful and athletic line.
Look for Cooper Bean to have another solid day running the ball. Ballinger might be ready to share the load more with some of the younger guys this week. Down the stretch Ballinger needs to get Cooper as much rest as possible for a hopeful playoff run.
Ballingers secondary played maybe their best game of the year this past week. Look for that to continue as Vaughn and Rollwitz should both have chances for an interception again this week.