It came down to special teams for St. Maries in a do-or-die matchup with Grangeville last week.
And at the final horn, Coach Craig Tefft’s team didn’t feel too special.
The Jacks were consistently handed long fields on offense, and Grangeville got the opposite as it handed St. Maries a 7-21 loss that ended its season and sent the Bulldogs to the 2A playoffs.
Grangeville used 139 yards off kick returns and a pair of punts that landed inside the St. Maries 20-yard line to keep Coach Tefft’s team off balance and off the scoreboard until late in the fourth quarter.
“We never felt like we were out of the game, we just didn’t set our offense up with a short field at any point,” Coach Tefft said. “It came down to that hidden yardage, and as a result, we lost.”
Eli Gibson found Tristan Nelson for a 14-yard touchdown pass late in the fourth quarter to put the Jacks on the board, but the offense was too late as the Bulldogs already had three scores tucked away.
“I just feel so bad for these kids, and especially our seniors,” Coach Tefft added. “We’ve been affected by these cruddy circumstances for so long now, from football camp and lifting in the summer, to having the delays during the season. It feels like we should be getting ready for week five, and instead we’re putting gear away.”
St. Maries closes its season with a 2-2 record.
St. Maries 7, Grangeville 21
SM 0 0 0 7 7
GHS 0 6 8 7 21
Passing: Gibson – 10-21, 75 yds., TD
Rushing: Martin – 8 rush, 51 yds.; Gibson – 23 rush, 29 yds.; Ramsey-Buress – 1 rush, 2 yds
Receving: Nelson – 3 rec., 32 yds., TD; Harvey – 1 rec., 24 yds.; Ramsey-Buress – 3 rec., 20 yds.
Defense: Gibson – 5 tkl.; Martin – 5 tkl., TFL; Hunter – 4 tkl.; Larson – 3 tkl., sack, 2 TFL; Taylor – 3 tkl.; Kolar – 3 tkl., sack, 2 TFL; Ramsey-Buress – 2 tkl.; Sibert – 2 tkl., sack, TFL; Rouse – 2 tkl.; Nelson – tkl., INT; Warren – tkl.; Badgett – tkl.