Chillicothe got everyone involved in their 42-26 victory over Kirksville Friday night. Cayden Larson threw a 29 yard touchdown pass to tight end Jaishon White moments into the 2nd quarter. The play gave Chillicothe a 28-0 lead and completed the bingo card before halftime of scoring in every way possible: passing, rushing, defense and special teams. Every player that stepped on the field impacted the hot hornet start.
Chillicothe received the opening kickoff of the game. It took only 11 seconds for Javon Kille to return the kickoff 80 yards for a touchdown to start the scoring. After forcing a turnover on downs, the hornets compiled a sustained drive that culminated in a Silas Midgyett four yard score on the ground. A great special teams play forced Kirksville to start the ensuing drive inside their own 10 yard line. Chillicothe’s defense turned up the pressure, wrapping up Tigers’ quarterback Hayden Davis who threw the ball up in the air, lineman Trent Jacobs batted the ball to himself and caught it in the end zone, resulting in six points for the defense. The first quarter was a dream start for Chillicothe, but one that Coach Chad Smith and his team were preparing for, and it only got better to start the 2nd quarter with the White receiving touchdown.
Kirksville’s running back Jace Kent would go on to catch a pass out of the backfield and turn it up the sidelines for a 27 yard score resulting in a 28-6 halftime lead for the hornets. In the 3rd quarter both teams traded punches, each scoring twice. For Kirksville Kent tacked on a rushing score from 42 yards out, and quarterback Ryder Lyons, who played the entire 2nd half as the signal caller for Kirksville, ran into the end zone from four yards out for a touchdown. However, with the large lead Chillicothe had built up, trading back and forth would do just fine as the offense came up with a pair of electric 3rd quarter moments. On a 4th and 1 from midfield, Coach Smith elected to keep the offense on the field and the call paid dividends as Midgyett took the handoff, he not only got the first down but went 50 yards for the touchdown. The next time the offense took the field, on a 2nd down play Larson faked the handoff and looked downfield to find Kille streaking up the seam uncovered. Kille made the catch and ran the distance to the house for a 73 yard touchdown.
The Chillicothe Hornets took a 42-18 lead into the 4th quarter where the only score was another Lyons rushing touchdown. The hornets offense did what they needed to in order to run down the clock, and the defense came up with timely stops to ensure a sizeable victory for Chillicothe, playing in front of their home fans for the first time this season.
Cayden Larson finished with over 100 passing yards and two touchdowns, Midgyett totaled 163 yards on the ground plus two scores, and Kille highlighted the two longest plays of the game, an 80 yard kick return and a 73 yard catch, both going for six points. Chillicothe improves to 1-1, and Kirksville falls to 1-1. After beating Macon 42-26 last Friday, the tigers find themselves on the other end of that exact same score. Chillicothe is back at home next Friday night in their first MEC game facing Maryville.