Madisonville made a number of key mistakes in Friday’s 42-21 Mustang loss to the Connally Cadets to snap a four-game winning streak and back-to-back victories in district.
“We did not do a good job taking care of the ball, but we just could not run our offense,” said Madisonville head coach Rusty Nail. “We did not play well against a good football team and got physically outmatched.”
The Cadets were able to jump out to an early 7-0 advantage after the Mustangs failed to convert a fourth and short around midfield on their first possession of the night. On the ensuing drive, Madisonville was marching to retaliate with a score when Justin Seale of the Cadets stripped the ball from Tyrese Brown to end the threat in Connally territory. Aaron Nellums would also fumble later in the contest.
Brown would break the ice for Madisonville in the second quarter with a rushing touchdown from a yard out.
“We could not get off blocks tonight and they switched it up on us,” said Brown. “We are going to get back to where we need to be, though. We are coached to overcome adversity and we still have plenty of games left to play.”
Trailing 21-7 entering the second half, it appeared as if the Mustangs would make a push when Nellums recovered a perfectly executed onside kick attempt from Mauricio Aceves. A few plays later, Brown would connect with a wide open Nellums up the seam for a 36-yard touchdown.
“After fumbling early on I was determined to get the ball back for my team,” said Nellums. “We need to keep working and trying to get better. We made a lot of mistakes tonight.”
Nellums would break away for another long score later in the quarter, but the Mustangs could never find enough of a rhythm to overcome their miscues and keep up with Connally’s offensive attack.
Despite pressure throughout most of the night, Brown was able to record 127 rushing yards against the Cadets on 22 carries (5.8 yards per carry). Brown now averages 5.6 yards per carry on the season and leads the well-rounded running game with 748 total yards.
“(Brown) was solid once again on Friday,” said Nail of his quarterback. “He never stopped competing when we had other who did. He continues to be a leader on and off the field.”
Nellums leads with an average of 7.1 yards per carry (434 total yards) in 2018.