Webb City has a missed opportunity at Nixa Friday. The Eagles held quarterback Gabe Johnson short of the 2 yards needed for a first down in the fourth quarter.

Both teams seeking first win here Friday when it's Webb vs. Carl

After a 14-7 first-game loss at Nixa last week, the Webb City Cardinals are eager to get their first win as they take on the Carl Junction Bulldogs Friday at Cardinal Stadium.

The Bulldogs lost their season-opener at home 42-22 against Ozark.

Reflecting on missed scoring opportunities at Nixa, coach Ryan McFarland says, “We need to finish drives with points. We were able to move the ball but couldn’t finish drives.” Doing a better job of making offensive adjustments in the second half would have helped, he says.

Quarterbacks Gabe Johnson and Braden McKee will be rotated again this week. McFarland says they both did some good and some bad. “We feel they both learned a lot and gained valuable experience against Nixa. We are looking forward to seeing how they both play against Carl Junction.”

McFarland says he feels the offensive line played hard, but “Nixa’s defensive line was definitely bigger, stronger and more physical than we expected. We made a lot of week 1 mistakes on offense, and we will hopefully take a step forward this week.”

He praises the defensive coaches for “a great job of game planning and preparing our players for a very tough Nixa offense.”

Nixa got the ball first and scored on four plays. Webb City answered on its first drive with a 10-play drive to take a 7-6 lead on Johnson’s quarterback keeper.

Webb City forced Nixa to punt on the Eagles’ second drive but gave up a touchdown and 2-point conversion as Nixa took a 14-7 lead.

Webb City opened the second half with a 42-yard drive that ended with the second of two missed field goals.

As the fourth quarter started, the Cardinals were stopped on fourth-and-2. Webb City got good field position again after Nixa was forced to punt. The Cardinals ran a 14-play drive that ended again at fourth-and-2, on the Nixa 13-yardline.

“Our special teams played well, as a whole,” says McFarland. “Alex Dunne, a senior transfer kicker, is going to be a weapon for us in the kicking game. It was good to be able to attempt live field goals in a game. We were 0-2 on those attempts, but the experience will help us down the road.”

McFarland noted that the coaching staff has been working on limiting unnecessary penalties. “We only had four penalties Friday night, two on offense and two on defense.”

Overall, McFarland says, “Our players did a great job of dealing with the heat that caused us to move practice times during the week leading up to the game. There were a lot of distractions and our players handled it well.” Kickoff was delayed until 8 p.m. because of the excessive heat.

“I thought our kids played with great effort and enthusiasm throughout the entire game.”

Breckin Galardo eludes a tackle. 

Omari Jackson

Andrew Elwell splits the Eagle defense.

3-1 Softball Cardinals at home Thursday and twice next week

Webb City softball is giving fans three home games to look forward to –  sandwiched around the Joplin tournament.

The Cardinals were 2-1 after defeating McDonald County 11-7 and Quapaw 11-1 Saturday at Quapaw and losing to Nevada  5-1 here Monday. They notched their third win 11-5 at Rolla today (Wednesday).

Monett will be here Thursday. The two home games next week will be against Carl Junction Tuesday and against Willard Thursday.


Volleyball Cardinals even record after 5-set season-opening loss

Volleyball fans in the Cardinal Dome Monday got their money’s worth as Webb City and Bentonville went for a nail-biting five sets.

The home team took the first set 25-17, lost the second 30-25 and won the third 25-15. Bentonville came back for the win by taking the final two sets 27-25, 15-13.

Aubree Lassiter had 15 kills. Jaeli Rutledge had 10 kills and 4 blocks, while Savannah Crane logged 29 assists. Sophia Crane had 23 digs.

The Cardinals got their first win of the season Tuesday at Nevada – in three straight sets – 25-13, 25-16 and 25-20.

Lassiter and Rutledge led again, with 10 and 9 kills, respectively. Sophia Crane had 22 digs.

The Cardinals will be at home Tuesday against ElDorado Springs before a stretch of road games.