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Missouri Week 6 high school football notebook: Seckman's Ruble running wild for upstart Jaguars

Francis Howell kicker Josh Deal breaks state record for career points by a kicker
Seckman quarterback Cole Ruble

Seckman senior quarterback Cole Ruble

By Chris Geinosky and Nate Latsch 

Seckman quarterback Cole Ruble threw for a season-high 135 yards and two touchdowns in last week’s 50-6 blowout against Parkway South. The performance moved his totals to 503 passing yards and seven touchdown passes to only one interception on the season.

Those are some solid numbers. They’re nothing spectacular, but certainly good enough to lead the Jaguars (5-1 overall record) to five wins in a row.

"Our confidence in the passing game is soaring," Seckman coach Nick Bauer told the St. Louis Post Dispatch. "He continues to sling the ball out there. He makes the right decision, puts it in the right spot, and I’m proud of him and how he’s developed that part of his game."

This is Ruble’s third year as a starting quarterback for the Jaguars, so how exactly has he kept the job that long with mediocre passing numbers? It’s because of his legs.

The 5-foot-11, 185-pounder has rushed for 1,170 yards and 23 touchdowns this season, some of the top running numbers for a quarterback across Missouri in 2022. This week he announced his commitment to play college football at Southeast Missouri State University.

Ruble racked up 1,716 yards and 19 touchdowns in his first season as a starter his sophomore year in an eight-game 2020 season that was shortened due to COVID-related cancellations or quarantines. He ran wild for 2,555 yards and 30 touchdowns last year as a junior when he led Seckman to a 9-3 season that set a single-season record for most wins in program history.

All told, Ruble has rushed for an eye-popping 5,446 yards and 72 touchdowns in his career. And maybe most impressively, he’s done it in 26 career games – meaning he’s averaged 209 yards and 2.7 touchdowns per contest. Oh, and by the way, this is from a kid who is also a three-time state placer in wrestling, too.

Crazy.

In Ruble’s three years under center for the football team, Seckman has produced a 19-7 record, which makes him the winningest quarterback in school history as well.

Ruble will look to add to his numbers this week at Pattonville, and then the Jaguars will turn their attention to winning a league championship when they take on Oakville in a Suburban Conference Orange Pool showdown next week at home against Oakville.

Francis Howell kicker Josh Deal

Francis Howell's Josh Deal attempts a kick against Jackson.

Francis Howell's Josh Deal breaks state record

Francis Howell senior kicker Josh Deal has been a big deal for the Vikings' football team for the past four seasons and on Saturday he secured his place in state football history. 

Deal converted eight point-after kicks to give him 255 for his four-year varsity career, which broke the Missouri high school football record for all-time points by a kicker. 

Strafford’s Alex Castillo previously held the record of 254 points, according to the Missouri State High School Activities Association online record book, after he converted 224 extra points and made 10 field goals from 2011-14. 

In his varsity career, Deal has kicked 16 field goals and made 207 point-after kicks. 

A 6-0, 205-pounder who is listed on Howell's roster as a running back and linebacker, Deal is coming off a career-best junior campaign where he kicked seven field goals and 62 extra-point kicks, both career highs. He also scored six rushing touchdowns a year ago as a backup running back. 

During Deal's four seasons, Francis Howell is 35-6 overall and 16-1 in Gateway Athletic Conference South play, good for two conference titles (and possibly a third this fall). 

Deal's strong right leg has been instrumental in the Vikings' success over the time. 

In addition to his field goal and point-after kick process, Deal is averaging more than 59 yards per kickoff and 32.75 yards per punt this season. 


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Savannah’s surprise season continues with sixth straight victory

Let’s be honest. Who saw this coming? Although maybe we should have.

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A program that has struggled in recent years, Savannah has raced out to a 6-0 start to the 2022 season under the guidance of new head coach Anthony Hays. The Savages posted a 4-7 record last year and had registered only four wins in their past 14 games dating back to the 2020 campaign. The program has had only two winning seasons since 2015.

However, Savannah recorded a noteworthy win back at the start of the season in Week 2. That’s when the Savages knocked off reigning Class 1 state champion East Buchanan, 24-19.

Since then, confidence has been riding high. Savannah has won its last four games by a cumulative total of 193-28: 29-0 against Kirksville, 69-0 against St. Joseph Lafayette, 54-22 against St. Joseph Benton and 41-6 against Cameron.

“You can’t be (undefeated) without winning one week at a time,” senior quarterback Ethan Dudeck told the St. Joseph News-Press. “So, every week we’re 0-0. We gotta win that week.”

Savannah currently sits on top of the Class 3 District 8 standings. But are the Savages for real? We will find out in the next three weeks when they take on a trio of upper-echelon district opponents – Chillicothe, Maryville, and St. Pius X (Kansas City) – all of which have winning records.

Park Hill South's Briggs Bartosh puts up video-game numbers in losing effort

Park Hill South dropped a heart-breaking 42-35 defeat against school district rival Park Hill last week. But it wasn’t because of the effort of senior Briggs Bartosh.

Bartosh, a 5-11, 185-pounder who can do just about everything for the Panthers, did exactly that last week when he set a single-game program record for total yards. Just recently taking over the starting quarterback position for South, Bartosh threw for 340 yards on 18-of-29 passing, rushed for 145 yards on 23 carries, and even added 27 return yards, giving him 512 total yards for the game. He also accounted for four touchdowns on the night, two passing and two rushing.

Last year, Bartosh was considered one of the top high school football players in Kansas City before suffering a season-ending injury during one of the most successful seasons in team history – a season that ended one win shy of a district title and a trip to the Class 6 state semifinals. This year, Bartosh has been putting his full skill set on display.

Bartosh, who’s being recruited by NCAA Division I programs as an athlete who can possibly play multiple positions, might join his older brother, Braden, who’s in his freshman football season at West Point. He also took an official visit last week to upstart Kansas, which has joined national top 25 rankings for the first time in more than a decade.

Brent Eckley picks up 100th coaching victory with Jackson

It’s been a memorable two-week stretch for Jackson head coach Brent Eckley.

Two weeks ago, Eckley registered win No. 200 of his coaching career when his team defeated Cape Girardeau Central, 42-14. Then last week, he won No. 100 at the helm of Jackson when his Indians boat-raced Sikeston, 60-13.

“(The 100th win) just makes me think about the people I’ve been lucky enough to work with here at Jackson,” Eckley told SEMOball.com. “I’m blessed to be the coach at Jackson, and I’ve been in some fortunate positions where people have been patient and supportive so that we had the opportunity to establish the program. We’ve had great parents that helped contribute to the success of the program. I’ve also been very fortunate to have great assistant coaches.”

There was no suspense in the milestone win as the Indians scored four first-quarter touchdowns to open a big lead against Sikeston.

Quarterback Zach Calder led his team to a fifth consecutive SEMO-North Conference crown, completing 11-of-13 passes for 169 yards and two touchdowns and also rushing for a score.

Jackson has never suffered a losing record in any campaign since Eckley took the reins of the program in 2012. In the past 10-plus seasons, the Indians have gone 100-26, claiming six district titles – and the 2020 Class 5 state championship – in that time.

Adrian makes history with romp of rival Cass-Midway

Adrian and Cass-Midway have played football against one another for a long time – since 1962 to be exact.

When Adrian slapped a 54-0 shellacking on their longtime rivals last week, it marked the largest margin of victory by either team in the 60-year history of the series. The Blackhawks improved to 5-1 on the season, bouncing back from a 38-35 victory against Lincoln the week before.

Coming into this season, Adrian has posted 10 consecutive winning campaigns. The program has lost two games or fewer in five of the past six seasons, including this year.

Reeds Spring quarterback Blandy Burall breaks two school records

Reeds Spring junior quarterback Blandy Burall broke two school records in his team's 63-49 loss against visiting Seneca on Friday night. 

Burall racked up 395 passing yards and six touchdowns as the Wolves tried to keep pace.

Seneca led 49-42 after three quarters, but pulled away in the fourth. The loss to snapped a three-game win streak for the Wolves, who fell to 4-2. 

As a sophomore, Burall threw for 1,750 yards and 19 touchdowns. Through six games this season, he's now thrown for 1,125 yards and 15 touchdowns.