DISTRICT PREVIEWS: Camdenton to clash with Jefferson City for first time ever in district opener
The playoffs have arrived and one of the opening rounds in the Class 5 District 4 bracket will feature two historic programs meeting for the first time ever.
Camdenton (4-5) and Jefferson City (3-6) were once led by two of the winningest coaches in Missouri high school football history in Bob Shore (367 wins) and Pete Adkins (405 wins) with Shore and his Lakers proudly claiming five state championships and Adkins leading the Jays to nine of their 10 total state crowns. These two Missouri Sports Hall of Fame programs are set to battle at the stadium that bears the former Jefferson City coach’s name Friday night at 7 p.m.
“On a personal level I am very excited about the game and I know ‘Big’ Coach Shore is excited about the game,” said current Camdenton coach Jeff Shore, Bob’s son and the former quarterback of two of the Lakers’ state championship teams. “Our guys are too young to know Jefferson City as I know it- the historic football powerhouse they have been. From my perspective it is a fun game and our guys are looking forward to playing it just because it is a football game.
“Looking forward to going to Pete Adkins Stadium and seeing what we can do.”
The Jays finished as the fourth seed in the district standings and are currently looking to erase a three-game skid at the right time and advance in the playoffs after falling to Fort Zumwalt West, 23-20, last week. Camdenton enters as the fifth seed and will begin its pursuit of a third straight district championship and its 29th overall in program history after dropping its season finale last week at Rolla, 28-10.
The prize awaiting both teams Friday night is a trip to the district semifinals at top seed Washington (8-1) the following week.
“I think us just playing hard, making our assignments better and cleaning up our mistakes,” Shore pointed to in terms of what it will take to keep the season alive. “We played really good against Glendale and did not play good against Rolla so we have to clean up those mistakes and there are no second chances. We’ll either clean them up and keep going or we won’t and it will be done. I think they know that.”
Camdenton is currently averaging 114.1 rushing yards, 243.9 passing yards and 358 total yard of offense per game that has led to the Lakers putting up an average of 27.8 points on the scoreboard each week.
The Lakers were stymied by a stout Bulldogs defense last week, racking up just 170 yards of total offense, and will look to quickly correct course against a Jefferson City defense allowing 22.3 points per contest.
Camdenton senior southpaw quarterback Jacob Wormsley will look to get back in groove with his receivers and lead a Laker offense that loves to throw the football all over the field. The senior is currently 152-223 on the season for 1,825 yards, 14 touchdowns and six interceptions. Sophomore Bear Shore may see some snaps as well, having completed 61 of his 82 passes for 462 yards, three touchdowns and four interceptions.
Returning All-State receiver Cooper Ezard continues to be the top target at wideout with 87 receptions for 1,048 yards and 11 touchdown catches. He has logged six games this season with 100-plus receiving yards and will surely draw quite a bit of focus from the Jefferson City secondary. Senior Jadin Faulconer has also been reliable in the passing game out of the backfield with 56 catches for 335 yards and a trio of scores as well as senior Eli Griffin who has totaled 29 catches for 267 yards and a touchdown. Meanwhile, sophomore Kam Durnin is at eight receptions for 204 yards, veteran senior receiver Phillip Kurle is at 19 receptions for 184 yards and two touchdowns, sophomore Javari Stewart has 16 catches for 122 yards and senior Logan Harmon is the seventh Laker who has crossed the century mark in receiving yards this season with 13 receptions for 104 yards.
The Camdenton rushing attack continues to be led by Faulconer who has rushed 110 times in 2020 for 644 yards (5.9 yards per carry) and a trio of touchdowns. Wormsley has rushed 66 times for 241 yards (3.7 yards per carry) and four touchdowns, Shore has totaled 34 carries for 95 yards (1.5 yards per carry) and two scores and Griffin has put up 83 rushing yards of his own on 24 carries (3.5 yards per carry) and five touchdowns.
As much as Camdenton likes to throw the ball, Jefferson City feels the same way about running it.
The Jays currently average 154.7 rushing yards, 66.7 passing yards and 221.3 yards of offense per game that has led to 18.9 points per outing and the “Purple Haze” defense of the Lakers know all about running teams after having a tough time stopping Rolla’s 324 rushing yards a week ago. Currently, Camdenton is allowing 152.4 rushing yards, 155.9 passing yards and 265 total yards of offense per game and 24.1 points per game.
The Jays have a little bit of depth in their rushing scheme and have been led by junior David Bethune who has rushed 128 times for 798 yards and 10 touchdowns, averaging 6.2 yards per attempt. Junior quarterback Seth Brooks has put up 262 rushing yards on 86 carries (3 yards per carry) and four touchdowns, junior Kevin Pendelton is at 44 carries for 218 yards (5 yards per carry), senior Devin White has 18 carries for 158 yards (8.8 yard per carry) and two scores and senior Jacob Duke has 45 carries for 141 yards and three scores, averaging 3.1 yards per attempt as the fifth Jay over the century mark this season.
Through the air, Brooks has completed 47 of his 104 passes for 569 yards, five touchdowns and 13 interceptions and his top option at receiver has been White who has logged 17 receptions for 224 yards and three touchdowns. Senior Marshaun Dye has caught 11 passes for 136 yards and a score, Bethune has also caught 11 passes for 97 yards and Pendleton has totaled seven catches for 69 yards on the season.
Overall, on both sides of the ball, Shore is expecting a team with plenty of speed and explosiveness and he is not taking anything for granted on Friday night.
“I think they are really athletic,” the coach said. “Good skill guys who will match up well with us. It will definitely be a tough competition.”
Well, with all the history these two programs share, the time has come to create a new chapter of it and there is no better place to start than the playoffs.
This is the first ever meeting between Camdenton and Jefferson City. The two sides once met in a jamboree in the late 90s and this will be the 78th different program the Lakers have faced in their history.
Camdenton had trouble getting things going at Rolla last week, but Faulconer has remained steady after rushing for 52 yards and hauling in three catches for 58 yard and a touchdown against the Bulldogs. He will look to continue that trend as long as the Lakers get to continue their 2020 campaign.
Jefferson City has some depth in its rushing attack, but Bethune presents the biggest threat of all as the leading rusher and his use in the passing game. Brooks will need to be contained along with Pendelton’s dual threat ability and both White and Dye cannot be allowed to sneak behind the Laker secondary.