Owensboro rolled to another huge victory Friday night at Rash Stadium, defeating Muhlenberg County 40-0 in the first round of the high school football Class 5A state tournament.
A big night by the Red Devils’ offense was led in part by junior running back Ethan Avery, who amassed 99 yards and two touchdowns on the ground.
The scoring came early and often for Owensboro, starting with a touchdown by Avery in the first minute. After the Mustangs fumbled the opening kickoff, Avery punched in a 24-yard score two plays later.
Austin Gough hauled in an 11-yard touchdown with 8:32 remaining in the first quarter, Gavin Wimsatt tacked on a 7-yard quarterback keeper four minutes later to give the Red Devils a 21-0 lead, and they never looked back.
Owensboro head coach Jay Fallin said he was pleased with the way his team came out strong from the start.
“The offense came out hot tonight and scored three quick touchdowns,” he said. “A lot of positives tonight on that side of the ball. We seemed to handle kickoffs and punt returns cleanly and overall the special teams did a good job as well.”
Avery scored his second touchdown of the night from 43 yards out with 3:41 remaining in the first half, and Owensboro took the 28-0 advantage into halftime.
The Red Devils closed out their scoring effort with a pair of third-quarter touchdowns by Ben Flaherty (66-yard reception) and Cameron Thompson (12-yard rush), initiating a running clock the rest of the way.
Wimsatt finished the night 12-for-20 with 243 yards and two touchdowns through the air. His lone interception came with the Red Devils leading 28-0 late in the first half. Flaherty led the receivers with 76 yards, while Treyvon Tinsley had 71.
The Owensboro defense limited the Mustangs to just 71 total yards (9 passing, 62 rushing) and six first downs. Fallin said it should not be overlooked that the Red Devil defense kept the Mustangs from scoring all night, regardless of the discrepancy in talent.
“We’ve hung our hat on defense all season,” Fallin said. “We have a lot of seniors on that side of the ball, and it just means more to them, knowing that each game could be their last from this point forward. The young guys came in and played well at the end, too. You have to love throwing a goose egg up on the scoreboard.”
Owensboro will be back at home next Friday when they take on Graves County a 7 p.m. Tickets for that game will be on sale starting Tuesday in the Owensboro High School athletic office.
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2019 football coverage is presented in part by Owensboro Health Orthopedics & Sports Medicine.