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Melissa runs wild on Mesquite Poteet, 42-10, to stay perfect in district play

Cardinals rush for 260 yards a week after QB Trever Ham threw eight TD passes

By Cody Thorn

MESQUITE, Texas - Trever Ham didn’t really need to showcase his arm this week.

The Melissa starting quarterback played more of a complimentary role in a 42-10 win against Mesquite Poteet on Thursday at Mesquite Memorial Stadium.

Ham tossed eight touchdowns in a win against Terrell last week, but didn't have to pass as much in this win, as he finished 11-for-19 for 103 yards and a score.

“'I'm okay with throwing it 50 times a game and also okay with throwing it 10 times a game you know; whatever you have to do to win,” said Ham, a junior. “That's what we had to do to win (Thursday) and we got it done. 

"Coming into the game, we thought we're gonna have some deep shots. We knew they rolled their safeties pretty often, which they came out and did; but, you know, they just kept the box light. So I mean, we just had to run."

But the reduction in his pass production Thursday suited Ham just fine.

“The main thing for me (Thursday) was just cheering on my teammates, you know," he said. "Yes, I wasn't doing it like I did last week, but we were still moving the ball down the field and getting touchdowns.”

Junior Nathan Adejokun was the top benefactor of the increased run game, with 19 carries for 168 yards and a trio of scores.

He did most of his damage in the first half with 121 yards on 14 carries and all three of his trips to paydirt. After a fumble by Poteet (1-5, 1-2 in 7-5A District) on the opening possession, the Cardinals scored on a 15-yard run by Adejokun.

The teams traded scores the following three possessions and the Cardinals (4-2, 3-0) took a 14-10 lead after the opening 12 minutes.

Adejokun had a 2-yard run on the next Cardinals’ possession but Poteet’s Josh Hobbs hit Davion Hall for a 39-yard score to help the Pirates pull within four, 14-10.

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The Cardinals scored the final 28 points of the game to secure a fourth straight win after losing to Class 5A Division II No. 1-ranked Argyle and China Spring, ranked No. 2 in Class 4A Division I.

“Coach (Matt) Nally talks about all the time that the reason he schedules those first games is because he wants to get us ready for district play,” Ham said. “You know, obviously, we started the way we wanted, but lost to two really good teams.

"And then we turned around and really got things going against Royse City. So, hopefully keep it going for the next game all the way up until game 16 (should Melissa reach the state title game).”

Adejokun rumbled for his third first-half score on an 11-yard run midway through the second quarter. Ham had a pair of second-quarter touchdowns, a 10-yard pass to Karson Maynard and a 1-yard run that made it 35-10 at the break.

Jacob Fields, who averaged 11 yards per carry, had a 13-yard run early in the third quarter to account for the final points of the game.

"My offensive coordinator, my co-OC, my offensive staff, they saw what they were given,” Nally said of the Pirates' defense. “That's what offensive football is about.

"It's all about math and where's your advantage is at, mathematically and right at that point in time it was in the box. So we felt good about our five against their box players. So we took advantage of it and Nathan Adejokun, Jacob Fields and Josh Nascimento; they're really tough runners, so very, very excited about that."

And like Ham, Nally shared the same sentiment that the Cardinals got the job done with their ground game and the play of their line, headed up by offensive tackle and Texas commit Trevor Goosby.

“For us personally, coming off of a touchdown passing game and coming out here and really owning the line of scrimmage and being able to run the football like we did; I mean, that's exciting," Nally said. "But once again, those guys do an amazing job. And the kids executed the game plan and I got a great offensive staff.

“I told them to just keep running until they stop us. At halftime, we were averaging eight yards of carry. So I was like, ‘Guys, there is no adjustment, just keep running the football,’ and they did a great job.”

Melissa ran for 260 yards and had more than 360 yards of total offense. The Cardinals' defense limited the Pirates to 106 yards of total offense and forced two turnovers - and scored on both of those following the change of possession.

Both teams are idle next week.