McEWEN — McKenzie’s Rebels made the trip into Middle Tennessee to face McEwen in the final regional and regular contest of the season. The Rebels ran into a loud crowd and suspect officiating, but still were able to take care of business winning 21-6 and finishing their second straight regular season without a loss.
Despite McEwen running almost three times as many plays as McKenzie, it was the Rebels that made better use of their possessions in the game. Neither team scored in the opening quarter of the game. McKenzie drew first blood in the second quarter when Marquez Taylor got loose for a 58-yard touchdown romp. Zach Aird was good on the PAT for a 7-0 Rebel lead. Not long before halftime, the Rebels found the endzone again on a 55-yard touchdown pass from Jackson Cassidy to Stafford Roditis. Aird connected on his second PAT for a 14-0 McKenzie lead which turned out to be the halftime score.
In the third quarter, Marquez Taylor found his way to the endzone again on a 16-yard touchdown run with Aird’s PAT good for a 21-0 lead. McEwen posted a lone score in the fourth quarter on a 1-yard touchdown run. The Rebels stopped their 2-point conversion attempt leaving the score at 21-6.
McKenzie outgained McEwen 228 to 214 with Jackson Cassidy throwing for 144 of those yards. The Rebels rushed for 84 yards on the night. Marquez Taylor rushed 7 times for 104 yards and a pair of touchdowns. Zach Aird, Stafford Roditis, and Drew Chappell caught passes for the Rebels.
Defensively, Rashad McCreary led the way with 10 tackles while Zach Aird and Tate Surber had five tackles each for McKenzie. A number of other Rebels recorded tackles during the contest as the defense totaled 35 tackles.
Both McKenzie and McEwen will be involved in the first round of the playoffs on November 4. McKenzie will host Wayne County while McEwen travels to Moore County. The Rebels could meet McEwen again in the second round on November 11, if the Rebels take care of business with Wayne County and McEwen defeats Moore County. That contest would be here in McKenzie.