North Callaway finds scoring options and defeats Wright City 44-27

The look of the game changed in the second half on Friday of North Callaway’s 44-27 home win over Wright City.

The Thunderbirds (4-2, 4-1 EMO) managed to bounce back from back-to-back losses dominating the line, with 314 rushing yards and three sacks from senior Manny Moreno.

The teams traded six picks to tie the game at 6 as North Callaway junior Braydn O’Neal threw one for 47 yards and then Wright City (1-5, 1-3 EMO) threw one in. threw a 40-yard pass to senior Payton Olsson, who led the Thunderbirds receiving core.

The Wildcat athletes then got the chance to run and received 20 and 37 yard catches. Thunderbird’s defense pushed some back, but Wright City managed to score from 20 yards on a drive that lasted 10 games and ate up a precious clock, making it 14-6.

The Thunderbirds didn’t hang around for long on their 64-yard three-play command that saw O’Neal run for 55 yards to the 5-yard line. Senior running back Trevor Ray, who finished with 111 yards on 22 carries, scored it in the next game to make it 14-13.

North Callaway would be injured again while fumbling for a punt, giving Wright City a short field. A few short passes before the Wildcats squeezed through the tackles and Wright City’s Jeremiah Davis would ultimately give Wright City a 21-14 halftime lead.

The second half would become more explosive as North Callaway surpass their first half to third quarter points total. The passing lanes would still be closed for O’Neal, but the racing lanes were not as he would extend more runs with his legs, who finished with 135 rushing yards leading the team in seven carries.

Wright City would not change their strategy in the third and would continue to pitch it. The ball, however, was thrown into the hands of junior Matthew Webber, who acted like a catcher and rushed past the ball, and returned it for 12 yards. Ray would top off the short run with another 5-yard touchdown to make 22-21 North Callaway.

The Thunderbirds would get rid of a 72-yard Wright City touchdown run as O’Neal ran free for 32 yards, then take him into the red zone before throwing him to Moreno for more. Moreno would then score from 8 yards to restore the Thunderbird’s lead to 30-27 after three quarters.

It was quiet around the perimeter but noisy up front as North Callaway clubbed the Wright City line and scored two more rushing touchdowns Moreno his second at 23 yards and Ray his third at 18 yards after breaking through a plethora of tackles but not before the Thunderbird defense made a crucial save on 4th and 1 near midfield.

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