It only took one play for the Decatur Eagles to set the tone Friday night. On Decatur’s first offensive play of the night quarterback Grayson Muehlstein took off for 73-yards around the left side for a touchdown – the first of four he accounted for on the night. The Eagles (1-1) put up 20 points in the first quarter and went on to a 35-28 win over the Springtown Porcupines (0-2).
“We had a good first quarter with some big plays to get a lead,” Decatur coach Kyle Story said. “In the second quarter we had two or three drives we should have finished off and we didn’t. The defense did a good job tonight too. We didn’t want to give up the big play like we did last year and the defense did a good job of coming up and tackling.”
Muehlstein put up 375 yards of total offense on the night, rushing for 243 and passing for 132.
“We knew it was going to be a good game, and we knew we were going to have to fight all the way to the end,” Muehlstein said. “Everybody played hard and finished the game strong. It was a great win for us.”
Springtown immediately fought back after the first Decatur touchdown, with two straight scores of their own. Springtown quarterback Landry Turner hit Caleb Whiteman for a 24-yard strike and a couple of minutes later found Dylan Ray for a 23-yard score.
On the next Decatur possession the Eagles mixed things up with Justin Meyers quarterbacking the series. Meyers hit Austin Givens for a 25-yard pass to keep the drive going and capped things off with a an 11-yard quarterback keeper to tie the game 14-14.
“Justin has been doing a good job as our back-up and we wanted to give him the third series of each half,” Story said. “He went down and scored in the first half. The second half we tried to throw a ball and the safety was right there, but he did a good job on both his drives.”
Muehlstein struck again late in the first quarter with and explosive 85-yard touchdown run. Decatur took a 20-14 lead after the missed PAT, but would never trail again.
The defense set up the next score with a Hunter Aragon interception and a return to the Porcupine 15-yard line. Decatur forced three interceptions on the night.
Muehlstein took it from there, with a 15-yard touchdown pass to Gage Frank in the corner of the end zone. Muehlstein ran in the two-point conversion to give the Eagles a 28-14 lead at the half.
“Our motto this week and year was start fast and finish strong,” Story said. “We started out fast in the first quarter and we needed to finish strong in the second half and that’s what we emphasized at halftime.”
Springtown came up with the only score of the third quarter, a six-yard touchdown pass to Ryan Hester. That cut the Eagle lead to 28-21.
Muehlstein put the game away in the fourth with his final touchdown of the night on a six-yard run up the middle.
“He had a great game running the ball and he ran through some tackles,” Story said about his quarterback. “When he got in the open field they couldn’t catch him. He had a good game.”
DECATUR 35, SPRINGTOWN 28
Springtown … 14 … 0 … 7 … … 7 … – … 28
Decatur … 20 … 8 … 0 … … 7 … – … 35
Decatur – 10:50, Grayson Muehlstein 73 run; Clark Allen kick
Springtown – 7:57, Landry Jones 24 pass to Caleb Whitman; Matteo Herrera kick
Springtown – 6:32, Turner 23 pass to Dylan Ray; Herrera kick
Decatur – 4:34, Meyers 11 run: Allen kick
Decatur – 2:53, Muehlstein 85 run; kick failed
Decatur – 6:47, Muehlstein 15 pass to Gage Frank; Muehlstein run
Springtown – 6:51, Turner 6 pass to Ryan Hester; Herrera kick
Decatur – 7:39, Muehlstein 6 run; Allen kick
Springtown – 2:49, Ryan Snow 2 run; Herrera kick
DECATUR … SPRINGTOWN
First Downs … 21 … 27
Rushes Yards … 360 … 144
Passing Yards … 157 … 357
Total Yards … 501 … 517
Comp-Att-Int … 8-14-0 … 37-59-3
Fumbles lost … 2-2 … 0-0
Penalties … 6-50 … 7-41
Rushing – Decatur, Muehlstein 22-243; Springtown, Ryan Snow 26-92
Receiving – Decatur, Gage Frank 4-91; Springtown, Matteo Herrera 10-94
Passing – Decatur, Muehlstein 7-12-132; Springtown, Landry Turner 34-54-313-3