State Championship FINAL: Stratford uses halftime to regroup for a comeback victory over Falls City
In the UIL Class 2A Division 2 State Championship game, the Stratford Elks played with a mentality that was bigger than themselves after being told by Coach Matt Lovorn "If you're not good enough without a title, you won't be good enough with a title." Stratford went on to defeat the Falls City Beavers by a score of 33-27 to secure a 2021 State Title! The atmosphere was electric from start to finish as both teams continued to put up a fight. You can find photos from the game on our instant gallery! To read the full recap of the game, become a VYPE Insider today!
Coming into the game strong, both teams held each other off until midway through the first quarter when Falls City quarterback Luke Shaffer found Jaxson Pipes for the first score of the game. It wasn't long before Stratford was able to answer back with a Zane Burr three-yard rush to fully set the tempo of the first half. The PAT was missed and Falls City lead 7-6. On the very next play, Pipes ran the kick off return to the house for an 85-yard score and Falls City lead 14-6. The second quarter saw a lot of physical action resulting in a Stratford touchdown and an incomplete PAT then a Falls City Shaffer keeper for a touchdown. Falls City went into half ahead 21-13.
Both teams came into the second half recharged, energized, and ready to get the ball rolling. Opening the second half, Stratford went for an on-side kick which was quickly recovered by the Elks to set the tone for the second half. Stratford coach Matt Lovorn said no adjustments were made at halftime in what was described as a an extremely quiet locker room during halftime. With a big smile on his face, Lovorn said that the onside kick was not a gut feeling, however it was planned. Stratford would go on to score two unanswered touchdowns with one two point conversion to take their first lead of the game in the third quarter with a six-point lead.
In the fourth quarter, Grant Jendrusch scored a big touchdown for Falls City, but the PAT was blocked, leaving both teams in a 27-27 tie and a battle to the finish. With a fumble recovery, another touchdown, and an interception, Stratford would win the game 39-27.