Breaking News Bar

Rangers pound Lions in season opener

  • Second-year Rangers head coach Justin Groves watches the action Friday from the sidelines.

    Second-year Rangers head coach Justin Groves watches the action Friday from the sidelines.
    Ian McMahon photo

Contributing Writer
updated: 9/3/2019 11:09 AM

The Benton Rangers had a strong offensive presence to start Week No. 1 of Friday Night Lights, leading the visiting Carterville Lions, 21-0, after one quarter.

The Rangers kept their foot on the gas beating the boys from west Williamson County, 42-0, at Tabor Field.

"Some things go as planned, and some plans don't. Tonight just happened to be one of those nights where everything clicked," said second-year head coach Justin Groves. "We knew what they expected to do, and we knew what we had. "On our side, we have a good team of men who play for each other," Groves said. "I'm not impressed with some of the mental mistakes we made and we still had some drives I feel like we should have scored on, and there were a couple of holding penalties which you're going to have, but overall, I felt like we really played behind Keegan Glover tonight and he showed a lot of poise."

Glover, a sophomore, had an impressive game in only his second career varsity start. He was 8-12 passing, throwing three touchdown passes for 134 yards and zero interceptions, resulting in a 147.75 passer rating.

The underclassman also added a two-yard touchdown in the second quarter.

"It was scary because I knew people kinda knew my name from lower levels. Starting varsity, I feel like I had some pressure, but my team had faith in me and I had faith in them, so it all worked out," Glover said.

Over the last decade, Rangers fans have been used to the luxury of having great quarterbacks from Tyler Leffler to Hamilton Page, and Glover is no exception.

The one thing the trio have in common is that they all throw and run exceptionally well. The dual-threat tradition has now been passed on to the sophomore quarterback.

"I like to do it all on the field, and really whatever I can do to help the team win."

Benton's Tyler Butler led all rushers with 72 yards, and two touchdowns, followed by teammate Blake Kneezle. Kneezle entered the game in the fourth quarter and made an immediate impact, carrying the ball eight times for a total of 51 yards.

Peyton Bayless averaged nine yards per reception totaling 18 yards, and two touchdowns.

Others who scored for the Rangers include Quinn Gajewski, who caught a 10-yard touchdown pass from Glover in the third quarter. Rangers kicker Chance Devore was 6-6 on PATs.

Benton 42, Carterville 0

Team Statistics

First downs: Carterville 4, Benton 18

Penalties-Yards: Carterville 2-20, Benton 6-45.

Fumbles-Lost: Carterville 2-2, Benton 0-0

Individual Statistics

PASSING - Carterville: Elijah Downen 4-13-1-25. Benton: Keegan Glover 8-12-0-134. Peyton Bayless 1-1-0-2.

RUSHING - Carterville: Elijah Downen 6-37, Preston Sumner 10-19, Bryce Anderson 1-6, Rafe Tuttle 2-2, Carson Pearson 1-0, Zachary Anson 1-(-1), EthanLannom 2-(-4). Benton: Tyler Butler 13-72, Blake Kneezle 8-51, Basin Davis 2-17, Peyton Swigonski 3-9, Keegan Glover 5-4, Brendan Minor 5-2, Rylan Perkins 1-(-3), Peyton Bayless 3-(-5).

RECEIVING - Carterville: Nick Brown 3-17, Preston Sumner 1-8. Benton: Blake Stewart 2-43, Peyton Bayless 2-18, Tre Hosick 2-10, Ayden Newcomb 1-44, Tyler Butler 1-11, Quinn Gajewski 1-10.