Royals are champs alone after blanking Bluejackets 20-0

Rogers senior Jack McGuire cuts back after catching a pass. (Photo by Bruce Strand)

by Bruce Strand, Sports editor

Five days after losing an emotion-charged game that knocked them from their roost, the Rogers Royals wound up as sole conference champions after all Wednesday.

The Royals smothered Cambridge-Isanti 20-0 in their Mississippi 8 finale and finished 5-1 in conference for their third straight crown.

And they didn’t have to share the laurels, because Elk River got tumbled by St. Michael-Albertville 42-20. The Elks, who beat Rogers 17-14 last Friday, tied STMA for second place at 5-2. (Rogers had one less conference game.)

Mitch Grupa booted a 23-yard field goal, with Nate Roehl holding. (Photo by Erik Jacobson)

“It’s nice to win the conference title,” said coach Marc Franz.  “It shows who played the most consistent football throughout the season, so our kids should be proud of that.”

The primary quest, of course, is winning their section and reaching the Prep Bowl like the Royals did last year. With a 7-1 overall mark, the No. 10 ranked Royals have earned the No. 1 seed in Section 5AAAA and will have a bye Tuesday

Kyle Williams was the workhorse, carrying 24 times for 11 yards. Jack McGuire added 68 in 15 totes as the Royals totaled 296 yards rushing.

Mitch O’Neill had a five-yard TD run and McGuire and eight-yard TD run while Mitch Grupa kicked field goals of 23 and 27 yards, plus two extra points.

Defensively, the Royals gave the Bluejackets no chance, yielding only 28 net yards rushing and nine passing, and just two first downs.

“We came out very physical, very aggressive tonight, especially on the defensive side, ” said Franz.

 

 

Rogers 20, Cambridge-Isanti 0

Cambridge-Isanti …………. 0   0   0   0  –   0

Rogers ………………………. 10   0   3   7   – 20

Scoring plays

Rog–Mitch O’Neill 5 run (Mitch Grupa kick)

Rog–Grupa 23 field goal

Rog–Grupa 27 field goal

Rog–Jack McGuire 8 run (Grupa kick)

 

Mitch O'Neill fought his way over the goal line for a four-yard touchdown. (Photo by Erik Jacobson)

Team statistics

First downs – Rogers 23, Cambridge-Isanti 2

Rushing – Rogers 55-296, Cambridge-Isanti 27-19

Passing – Rogers 7-17-54-1, Cambridge-Isanti 1-9-9-2

Total yards – Rogers 350, Cambridge-Isanti 28

Penalties – Rogers 6-50, Cambridge-Isanti 4-25

Punts – Rogers 2-29.5, Cambridge-Isantil 5-33.4

Rogers statistics

Rushing – Kyle Williams 24-111, Jack McGuire 15-68, Nate Roehl 6-55, Matt Weber 8-38, Kent Hoover 1-19, Mitch O’Neill 1-5

Passing – Weber 7-17-54-1

Receiving – Andrew Smith 2-19, Chase Cleveland 2-10, McGuire 1-19, Austin Derouin 1-8, O’Neill 1-(-2)

Cambridge-Isanti statistics

Rushing – Cole Bakke 7-28, Trent Chromy 6-10

Passing – Clayton Jennissen 1-8-9-1, Bakke 0-1-0-1

Receiving – Bakke 1-9

 

MISSISSIPPI 8

Final standings

Rogers ………………….. 5-1    7-1

STMA ……………………. 5-2    6-2

Elk River ……………….. 5-2    6-2

Monticello …………….. 4-3   5-3

Becker ………………….. 3-3   5-3

Buffalo ………………….. 2-5   2-6

Big Lake ……………….. 1-5   3-5

Cambridge-Isanti …. 1-5   1-7

 

Results Wednesday

STMA 42, Elk River 20

Rogers 20, Cambridge-Isanti 0

Monticello 21, Buffalo 14

Becker 26, Big Lake 21

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