SENECA — The Seneca Indians put a major score into the Lamar Tigers for one half Friday night at Earl Campbell Stadium.
Lamar, owners of the nation’s longest winning streak, took a 21-19 lead into the half and needed a big second half to come away with a 49-27 victory over Seneca.
Lamar scored 28 unanswered points after halftime to extend that winning streak to 54 games. The Tigers were last defeated in the 2014 regular season finale against former Big 8 Conference rival Carl Junction. Lamar has won seven consecutive Missouri Class 2 state titles.
Lamar’s second half scores came in the form of Duncan Gepner’s 2-yard run, Luke Hardman’s 48-yard punt return, Cage Jordan’s 80-yard run, and Trevor Medlin’s 31-yard run.
Lamar needed the big plays offensively, because defensively Seneca senior quarterback Gavin Clouse seemed to have caught the Tigers by the tail and was kicking it.
Clouse rushed for 187 yards and one touchdown on 23 carries and passed for 120 yards and three scores on 9 of 18 accuracy.
Clouse and the Indians nearly had the answer for Lamar throughout the first half.
In the first quarter, Lamar and Seneca exchanged scores for a 7-all score, with Lamar’s Dante Stahl opening the scoring on a 4-yard run and Seneca answering on a 18-yard touchdown pass from Clouse to Monty Mailes.
Case Tucker’s 4-yard run put Lamar up 14-7, then Clouse scored on a 1-yard run to cap off a precision Seneca drive for a 14-13 score, Gepner and Hardman connected on a 32-yard scoring pass for a 21-13 Lamar advantage, and Seneca closed out the first half scoring with a 16-yard pass from Clouse to Daythen Long.
Clouse and the Indians had one more scoring pass in them in the second half, but it was too little too late after Lamar’s scoreboard assault.
Seneca, 1-4 overall and 1-2 Big 8 West, will attempt to regroup from consecutive losses to unbeaten Cassville and unbeaten Lamar with a Week 6 game on the road against Monett. Monett earned its first win of the season with a 43-28 win Friday night against Logan-Rogersville.
Seneca earned a 28-7 victory last season over Monett, giving the Indians their 8-0 start. Since that win, however, the Indians have lost six of their last eight games, including a pair against Lamar.
Meanwhile, for Monett against Logan-Rogersville, William Murphy provided a much-needed spark for the Cubs, rushing for 234 yards and four scores. Please keep in mind that Murphy had not scored a rushing TD at the varsity level since his sophomore year.
Logan-Rogersville remained among the ranks of the winless.