It was apropos on senior night in Washington that both of the Blue Jays’ touchdowns came from seniors.
Washington (0-8, 0-5) wrapped up both its home schedule and its GAC Central schedule with a 55-17 home loss to Wentzville Liberty (3-5, 2-3).
The Jays were able to stay competitive for most of the first half, though they trailed 27-10 going into the intermission. After giving up a touchdown on the opening Eagles’ drive, the Jays marched down the field and answered right back.
Senior Kaden Bollmann took a screen pass from Cory Hardesty from one 15 yard line to the other to put the Jays in position to even the score. The Jays were at one point stopped, but a facemask penalty gave Washington another chance and Bollmann added another first down reception.
Bollmann’s catches set up fellow senior Tommy Ruether for the Jays’ first touchdown on a three-yard pass from Hardesty.
That evened the score, but Liberty scored on its next drive to run out the first period. After the teams exchanged defensive stoppages, backup quarterback Logan Roewe was intercepted deep in Washington territory when Eagles linebacker Ben Adelsberger jumped a passing route and took the ball in for a touchdown.
Liberty then got its third rushing touchdown of the game from running back Wesley Hines, who broke free for an 88-yard score.
After blocking the ensuing point after attempt, the Jays passed their way down the field and Will Bruer tacked on a field goal in the final 30 seconds of the half.
The third quarter was all Eagles, who added three more scores to take a commanding 48-10 lead.
Washington added a late touchdown on a pass from Roewe to tight end Ty Rinne, a senior and converted lineman, on the game’s final play from scrimmage as the continuous clock ran out the remaining time during the Jays’ kickoff.
“There’s not enough good things you can say about Ty Rinne, and we’ve got a couple of other seniors — Tommy Ruether, Jack Tyree, Kaden Bollman and there’s a couple of others, kids I’m sure that I’m forgetting that have just done everything we’ve asked, almost 100 percent in the weight room,” Head Coach Derick Heflin said. “It’s hard to go through these struggles for them because they deserve some great things. Ty’s a great kid. He’s a three-sport athlete and it was nice to get him a touchdown there at the end.”
The Jays went to the pass more than usual, airing the ball out downfield on multiple occasions, even before the game got out of hand. Hardesty completed 9-18 passes for 203 yards.
“We did some good things,” Heflin said. “Cory’s throwing the ball better and we found some things that we were able to use and exploit and our receivers made some plays there.”
Roewe was 2-4 passing for 23 yards.
Bollman caught three balls for 113 yards.
Ruether caught four for 35 yards and the score.
Nate Busch and Rinne had a pair of catches each. Busch compiled 55 yards and Rinne 23.
Rushing, Tyler Hughes led the Jays with 45 yards on four carries.
Hardesty picked up 36 yards on the ground.
Busch ran for 20 yards, Johnny Duncan for 13 and Ruether for five.
The Jays will have one final regular season game in which to attempt to break their winless season, going on the road to face Francis Howell North (2-6). The Knights’ wins have come against Howell Central in Week 6 and Ft. Zumwalt South in Week 3. Howell North escaped its scrap with the Bulldogs by just one point, 28-27. The Jays battled Zumwalt South to a scoreless tie until the final minute of the first half in Week 6 before the Bulldogs were able to pull away.
Liberty – 14+13+21+7=55
WHS – 7+3+0+7=17
LIB – Wesley Hines 16 run (Tyler Murphy kick), 9:08
WHS – Tommy Ruether 3 pass from Cory Hardesty (Will Bruer kick), 4:12
LIB – Hines 13 run (Murphy kick), 0:09.
LIB – Ben Adelsberger 12 interception return (Murphy kick), 8:07
LIB – Hines 88 run (kick failed), 2:49
WHS – Bruer 23 field goal, 0:28
LIB – Ryan Bermudez 4 run (Murphy kick), 7:45
LIB – Tito Plaza 16 run (Murphy kick), 6:19
LIB – Plaza 11 run (Murphy kick), 2:06
LIB – Aries Williams 8 run (Murphy kick), 8:45
WHS – Ty Rinne 10 pass from Logan Roewe (Bruer kick), 2:10