Redbirds rout Raiders

Bo Ryan GateHouse Media Illinois
Metamora senior Brock Modglin high-fives teammates during the starting lineup before the Redbirds’ game against Pekin on Oct. 16 in Metamora. The Redbirds wrapped up their season Friday with a win over East Peoria, finishing with a record of 7-2 overall, 5-2 conference.

In between an aerial show by East Peoria quarterback Josh Spokely and four onside kick recoveries by the Raiders, Metamora played some impressive football in a 63-21 Mid-Illini Conference win at Corwin Clatt Field.

“One thing these guys have been is resilient because we have had some weird things happen,” Metamora coach Pat Ryan said. “We can’t seem to ever get comfortable … we’ve been down in several ball games and the kids just hang in there.”

Playoff-bound Metamora (7-2, 5-2) never trailed Friday, taking five plays and moving 79 yards for a 7-0 in its first possession.

Brock Modglin scored the first of his four touchdowns from five yards out to cap a 90-second drive that started at the 8:45 mark of the first quarter.

Modglin scored again on a 38-yard run at 9:23 of the second quarter and quarterback Jon Brunton added another score on an 8-yard run with 7:32 left in the same frame.

The rout was on, or was it?

East Peoria (3-6, 2-5) went aerial and stunned the Redbirds with Spokley connecting with Brendan Curtis on a 74-yard scoring strike at 6:29.

Then, after an onside kick recovery, connected again with Curtis for a 54-yard touchdown throw that cut Metamora’s lead to 20-14 with 5:58 showing.

The Raiders grabbed another onside kick, but the momentum shifted quickly when Taylor Prunty picked a Spokely pass and returned it 68 yards for the score and a 28-14 lead.

With 46 seconds left before intermission, Modglin added his third touchdown of the half as Metamora took a 35-14 lead into the locker room.

“We haven’t been able to exhale in a month,” Ryan said. “And we didn’t get to exhale here for a while.

“Give (East Peoria) credit for not quitting. Their kids kept battling.”

A disbelieving Metamora faithful watched East Peoria recovered the second-half kickoff and take eight plays to move 48 yard to cut its deficit to 35-21 with 2:58 into the second half, but the Raider magic ended there.

Metamora scored the final four touchdowns of the game and the contest went to a running clock on Tommy Bell’s 13-yard run with 8:39 left to play.

“We teased ourselves,” East Peoria coach Kevin Vedell said. “We did battle, and we did some nice things.

“But Pat Ryan is a darn good football coach, but I’m not saying anything anyone doesn’t already know.”

Spokley’s final game showed the senior connecting on 16-of-33 pass for 271 yards. He did have four interceptions. Fellow senior Curtis had eight receptions for 185 yards.

Modglin led Metamora with 119 yards on just 10 carries. He scored four times. Tommy Bell had 90 yards in a reserve role while Kyhl Willey grabbed 87 yards on seven totes.

Metamora produced more than 400 yards of total offense.

“We’ve had our ups and downs, but we feel like played as well as we have in a while…,” Ryan said. “The bottom line is that we feel we are going into the post-season with some momentum.”