"I'd like to get us on a dry field for once and see how we do," Fort Scott head coach Curtis Horton quipped after the game. The Greyhounds also played in the rain in their season opener at Highland on Aug. 24, a contest they won 20-7 without the benefit of an offensive touchdown.
The Apaches, playing their season opener, scored 29 unanswered points in the final seconds of the first half and first 13 of the second half as their rushing game began to wear out the Greyhound defense.
Tyler forced Fort Scott (1-1) to punt 10 times. In the second half, the 'Hounds punted five times, saw one possession end with an interception and another end with a turnover on downs at the Tyler one-yard line on the first play of the fourth quarter.
"Offensively, we've got to create a rhythm." Horton said in surmising at least a part of Fort Scott's offensive woes in the game. "We've got to start moving the chains. We've got to start getting first downs. Last week and this week, we were in second-and-long too much. Second-and-long can kill you."
Tyler scored first despite beginning its drive pinned back at its own 3-yard line by a Mark Whitrock punt. 17 plays later, backup quarterback Lamar Carraway came in to run the goal-line offense and scored on a run to the right side with 12:58 left in the second quarter, Kicker Christian Madrigal's extra-point was unsuccessful.
Fort Scott scored later in the period after getting pinned back at its own 2-yard line. Running back Stanley Hagan ran both plays of the Greyhounds' drive. He gained four yards on the first play, then scored from 94 yards out on the second. Whitrock was able to convert the extra point with 8:06 left on the clock.
Hagan, a 6' 1", 195-pound freshman from Nashville, Tenn., has been the source of 88 percent of Fort Scott's offense this season (466 of 503 yards in total offense). He rushed for 237 yards against Highland and finished with 190 yards on 25 carries while catching three passes for 39 yards. The other offensive players have combined for 64 yards of total offense in 65 plays.
"Stanley's a tremendous back," Horton says. "To be honest, you consider the conditions, I think he's had two excellent games. He's just a hard worker. He doesn't say two words. He's the kind of guy we're looking to build a program around. He just wants to play ball and loves football."
Given Stanley's numbers, it's a given that the offensive line has done a good job of run blocking. The pass-blocking grade might have to settle for an incomplete as none of the quarterbacks have taken charge of the offense. Fort Scott used three Saturday with San Diego State transfer Colton Morrison joining the mix along with Sean Strehl and Owen Jordan. The three combined to complete just six of 21 passes for 69 yards. For the season, the 'Hounds are just 10 of 40 passing for 90 yards.
Tyler took the lead with 25 seconds remaining in the first half when starting quarterback Tyrik Rollison found Tracy Smith from 16 yards out. The Apaches went for two points but running back Ryan Young was stopped short of the goal line.
Fort Scott managed to get to the Tyler 20 at the end of the half as Morrison found Hagan for 29 yards on a screen pass and a Tyler personal foul moved the ball up another 15 yards. But Morrison's pass was dropped on the last play of the half.
The Apaches extended their lead on their first possession of the second half. Rollison connected with Marquise Smith for 36 yards on the first play to get the ball to the Fort Scott 16. Backup tailback Leroy Dobbins carried on every play after that, finding the end zone from two yards out with 11:02 on the clock. Carraway ran in the 2-point conversion to make it a 20-7 game.
Dobbins scored the next Tyler touchdown on a 24-yard run to the left side with 5:15 on the clock. Rollison threw to tight end Dmarjai Devine for 2 points to make it 27-7.
Starting tailback Ryan Young scored from two yards out with 1:58 to go in the third on a drive set up by a Charleston Higginbotham interception. Madrigal kicked the extra point.
Young rushed for 153 yards for Tyler on 20 carries while Dobbins ran 20 times for 95 yards. Rollison completed eight of 18 passes for 126 yards. Tracy Smith caught five of them for 58 yards.
Tyler gained 288 of its 414 yards of total offense on 61 rushing plays. However, the Greyhound defense sacked Rollison three times. Linebacker Stephan Martin got to him twice for 13 yards in losses.
Considering the conditions and Tyler's determination to establish the running game, Horton felt good about the Greyhounds' defensive effort.
"I thought we did what we wanted to do," Horton said. "We've got to keep them off the yard. They were on the yard too much. And by the fourth quarter, it's realistic, they were fatigued. Kudos to Tyler; they kept pounding that rock at us and that's how the game is played."
Fort Scott goes back into conference play Saturday with a road game at No. 2 Butler at 7 p.m. Saturday. The Grizzlies (2-0) opened their new BG Products Veterans Sports Complex with a 28-10 victory over No. 5 Blinn, their first win over the Buccaneers in the annual series.
NOTES -- This was the first-ever meeting between Fort Scott and Tyler. The Greyhounds fell to 3-4 in the annual series with their second consecutive home loss. The Greyhounds fell to Blinn last season....
Tyler improved to 6-1 in the series, tying with Blinn and Garden City for the best record. Garden City defeated Cisco, 24-19, at Garden City....
The Texas-Oklahoma schools won five of the eight games this season and now lead the series 33-20. Home teams were 6-2 with Fort Scott and Coffeyville taking the losses....
TYLER............. 0 12 23 0 -- 35
FORT SCOTT.. 0 7 0 0 -- 7
T -- Carraway 3 run (kick failed), 12:58 [17 plays, 97 yards, 6:24 time of poss.]
FS -- Hagan 94 run (Whitrock kick), 8:06 [2, 98, :42]
T -- T.Smith 16 pass from Rollison (run failed), :25 [6, 49, 1:32]
T -- Dobbins 4 run (Carraway run), 11:02 [6, 52, 2:41]
T -- Dobbins 24 run (Devine pass from Rollison), 5:15 [4, 86, 1:40]
T -- Young 2 run (Madrigal kick), 1:58 [4, 37, 1:32]
RUSHING: Tyler -- Young 20-153, Dobbins 21-95, Carraway 7-60, Hall -35, Murray-Lawrence 3-(-1), Rollison 6-(-10), team 1-(-14). Fort Scott -- Hagan 25-190, Dangerfield 2-14, Jordan 2-6, Cage 1-0, Strehl 2-(-4), Morrison 6-(-31).
PASSING: Tyler -- Rollison 8-18-0-126. Fort Scott -- Jordan 0-3-0-0, Morrison 4-12-0-42, Strehl 2-6-1-27.
RECEIVING: Tyler -- T.Smith 5-58, M.Smith 1-36, Mack 1-23, Chappelle 1-9. Fort Scott -- Hagan 3-39, Dangerfield 3-30.
MISSED FIELD GOALS: None.