The Butler football team soared to a 57-0 win over Air Force Prep on Saturday evening at BG Products Veterans Sports Complex.
While Butler (3-2 overall, 2-1 KJCCC) dominated the game, the Grizzlies were slow to start offensively. Neither team recorded a first down in the first quarter. Butler had two yards of total offense after 15 minutes and Air Force Prep had negative -24 yards. The first eight drives resulted in seven punts and a missed field goal by Butler after a long punt return.
Butler finally started to move the ball late in the first quarter and cashed in its first touchdown just into the second quarter when Van Powell caught a 20-yard scoring pass from Damarcus Smith. Butler had problems with the extra point kick, but Bakari Triggs was able to complete a pass to Matt Jones for a two-point conversion and Butler led 8-0.
The Grizzlies would go on to score three more touchdowns in that second quarter. Chris Carson would run in from one yard out and Damarcus Smith threw touchdown passes to Derek Lee and Michael Gallup, leading 29-0 at the break.
Butler continued to roll in the second half. Smith's fourth touchdown pass was a 50-yard strike to Marquel Wade. Joel Blumenthal came in to run the offense at that point and led Butler on three scoring drives. The first was capped by a 59-yard run by Ja'mon Cotton. The final two were passing touchdowns – one to Andrew Reinkemeyer from 52 yards out and another to Julian Burris from 45 yards out.
Damarcus Smith completed 15-25 passes for 202 yards and four touchdowns while Joel Blumenthal was 10-17 for 189 yards and two more scores. Butler had 14 different receivers catch passes tonight, led by Andrew Reinkemeyer's four catches for 91 yards. Ja'mon Cotton had just four rushes, but led the Grizzlies with 93 yards on the game – an average of 23.2 yards per carry.
"It started off with the defense, which was outstanding from beginning to end," head coach Troy Morrell said.
Butler has now won two straight games, beating Fort Scott and Air Force Prep by a combined score of 120-7.
"I think the guys are starting to understand their roles and feel more comfortable in what they're doing and playing together as 11 on the field," Morrell said. "This has been a good couple of weeks, but from here on out, the competition is going to be a lot tougher."