After coming up short in two previous to trips to the state championship game, the CBC Cadets finally got to see what it feels like to win the big prize in Missouri Class 6 football.
Coach Scott Pingel, who spent 10 years in the program, watched his Cadets bring home the hardware for the first time in school history as CBC stormed past Rockhurst 31-24 to claim the Class 6 championship Saturday night at the Edward Jones Dome.
CBC(14-0), which finished second in 2006 and 2011, won its first title and the first for a St. Louis area team since Hazelwood Central won in 2009.
“I think it means so much to CBC. It means so much to these guys and to the guys that have played here before,” Pingel said. “We have battled for 10 years that we had this stigma that we couldn’t get it done and to get it done with this group of guys is pretty special.”
Rockhurst (12-2) finished with a second place trophy was for the sixth time in 15 state championship game berths.
CBC raced to a 17-10 lead at halftime but allowed Rockhurst to score twice in the third quarter .Rockhurst running backs Kiah Kinchen and AJ Taylor provided the punch for the Hawklets on the two scoring drives as Kinchen ran for 84 yards and Taylor rushed for 63 yards.
“We just decided we going to run right at them because we couldn’t block their edge guys well enough to set up the pass game,” Rockhurst coach Tony Severino said. “We decided to run right at them and I thought our kids did a marvelous job getting that thing back to 10-10 and we felt good about it (the game) then.”
Rockhurst went ahead on a TJ Green to Lance Boehm 52-yard bomb to make it 24-17 with 1:51 left in the third quarter.
CBC responded in the fourth quarter as quarterback Blake Charlton hit Mike Million with a 72-yard completion to put the Cadets deep in Rockhurst territory.
Kalen Taylor capped the drive on the next play with a 2-yard touchdown dash around right end to even the score at 24-24 with 14 seconds to go in the third quarter.
Million had a career night with 94 yards receiving on four catches and two touchdowns. Charlton was 17 of 22 passing for 220 yards and three touchdowns. Taylor ran for 57 yards and a score.
CBC picked up its go-ahead for good touchdown Charlton hit Kameron Curtis with an 11-yard touchdown toss with 5:43 left to go.
The Cadets defense took care of things from that point.
Throughout the night, CBC harried and harassed Green. Green got loose and made some plays but he also got whacked some times.
CBC’s stop crew sacked Green seven times. Green, the son of former St. Louis Rams and Kansas City Chiefs quarterback Trent Green, hit 13 of 24 passes for 176 yards and two scores.
Green made some plays but he spent a lot more time running around trying to avoid taking shots from a pass-rush happy CBC front.
“They put a lot of pressure on the edges, Green said, “I was hard to get outside and we had trouble getting them blocked and I wasn’t able to make the plays.”
The Cadets forced a turnover on downs at their 47 with 2:56 left. The Cadets offense ran down the clock and the CBC faithful began to party in the Edward Jones Dome stands.
Validation as an elite program could now be claimed by CBC with no qualifiers or questions.