GIBSON CITY — On more than one contest this season, Gibson City-Melvin-Sibley has taken a one-score lead after one quarter, then stormed ahead in the second quarter.
Saturday’s first round playoff matchup was no exception, as the Falcons outscored Rushville-Industry 28-0 in the second quarter en route to a 48-0 win.
“We played with passion and enthusiasm,” coach Mike Allen said after the game. “We were having fun and executing on offense, defense and special teams, and it just makes it more exciting. Our kids just played so well today.”
Sophomore running back Aidan Laughery led the way for the Falcons with 97 yards and three touchdowns on 13 carries and Payton Kean finished with 80 yards on nine carries. Both players were back after being out from injuries last week, and sat out the entire second half with the game secure.
Along with its opponent not having many passing attempts coming into the game, GCMS also stuck to the run, with only one 13-yard pass completion from starting quarterback Cade Elliott on four attempts. Rushville-Industry also had only one completion of 14 yards.
The Falcons finished with 277 rushing yards compared with 128 by the Rockets.
“Cade did a great job of stepping away and avoiding a sack, and our running game was working so that’s what we were going with,” Allen said.
After trading offensive series in the first quarter, the Falcons got on the board on a four-yard touchdown run by Laughery with 28 seconds to go.
Laughery scored again with 7:35 left in the first half on a nearly identical four-yard run, putting the Falcons ahead 13-0 after the two-point conversion try was unsuccessful.
Rushville-Industry stalled on its next drive and attempted to punt deep in the own territory. Daniel Jones blocked the punt and senior Spencer Meenan recovered it in the end zone, widening the lead to 21-0.
Aided by a personal foul penalty called on a Rocket defender during the punt, GCMS got the ball in short field. On the very next play, Laughery ran 35 yards to make the score 28-0 with five minutes left in the first half.
Isaiah Chatman recorded two touchdowns, the first being a one-yard run with 27 seconds left in the first half. The second was a seven-yard carry with 10:37 left in the third quarter. He finished the game with 35 rushing yards on six carries.
GCMS’s backup also achieved, playing the entire fourth quarter against the Rockets’ starters.
Ty Harden had a 23-yard touchdown run with 5:20 left in the game. Earlier, Hunter Wahl intercepted a long pass. Kellan Fanson carried the ball six times for 20 yards in the final quarter.
“We wanted to spread the ball around, get those guys in there and get some experience and playing time; it’s going to benefit us down the road,” Allen said.
Rushville-Industry, who ended its season 6-4, was led by the 46 rushing yards by Kreeden Allen. Quarterback Josh Triplett had 26 yards, James Corrie finished with 22 and Alec Wenger had 20 total yards.
GCMS 48, Rushville-Industry 0
R-I 0 0 0 0 — 0
GCMS 7 28 7 6 — 48
G — Laughery 4 run (Jones kick)
G — Laughery 3 run (conversion failed)
G — Laughery 35 run (Laughery run)
G — Meenen blocked punt (Jones kick)
G — Chatman 1 run (Jones kick)
G — Chatman 7 run (Jones kick)
G — Harden 23 run (kick failed)
Team GCMS R-I
First downs 21 5
By rushing 19 4
By passing 1 1
By penalty 1 0
Rushing att. 43 34
Rushing yds. 277 138
Yds. lost rush. 5 27
Net rush yds. 272 111
Pass att. 3 7
Pass comp. 1 1
Interceptions 0 2
Net yds. pass. 14 14
Total off. plays 46 41
Total off. yds. 286 152
Fumbles-lost 0-0 2-2
INTs-yds. 0-0 2-25
Punt rets.-yds. 1-26 1-0
Kick rets.-yds. 1-0 8-73
Tot. ret. yds. 26 73
Punts-yds. 1-45 2-27
Yds. per punt 45 13
Penalties-yds. 3-34 3-30
Time of poss. 21:50 16:10
Sacks-yds. 0-0 1-5
RUSHING — GCMS 43-272 (Laughery 13-98, Kean 8-73, Chatman 6-35). R-I 34-111 (Allen 11-43, Corrie 12-23, Triplett 6-24).
PASSING — GCMS 1-3-14 (Elliott 1-3-14). R-I 1-7-14 (Triplett 1-7-14).
RECEIVING — GCMS 1-14 (Culler 1-14). R-I 1-14 (Corrie 1-14).
PUNTING — GCMS 1-45 (Culler 1-45). R-I 2-27 (Triplett 2-27).