Prep football preview: Hannibal at Moberly

Posted: Oct. 10, 2013 3:16 am Updated: Oct. 24, 2013 4:15 am

Herald-Whig Sports Writer


When: 7 p.m. Friday

Where: Noel Spartan Stadium, Moberly, Mo.

Radio: KHBL 96.9 FM

Records: Hannibal -- 5-1 (4-0 North Central Missouri Conference). Moberly -- 6-0 (3-0 NCMC).

Coaches: Hannibal -- Mark St. Clair (137-49 at Hannibal, 17th season). Moberly -- Jason Ambrosen (72-64 at Moberly, 13th season).

Last meeting: Oct. 5, 2012 -- Hannibal 34, Moberly 22. Caleb Bieniek rushed for 184 yards on 14 carries, and Hannibal overcame a 9-0 halftime deficit. Mitch Nichols added 169 yards on 18 carries and three touchdowns.

The streak: Hannibal has a five-game winning streak over Moberly and has won 13 straight NCMC games.

Griffith done: Hannibal freshman running back Shamar Griffith is out for the season after he broke two bones in his lower right leg during Hannibal's 61-32 win over Fulton on Friday. Griffith had become the main reserve back to starters Nichols and Wyatt King, and he had been seeing quite a bit of playing time. Griffith rushed for 280 yards on 55 carries with five touchdowns this year.

"He's had a great year," St. Clair said. "As a freshman to be able to do some of the things he's done is absolutely amazing."

Title on the line: The NCMC doesn't use a tiebreaker for conference championships, so neither team can clinch an outright crown with a win Friday. Hannibal still has a Week 8 NCMC game left against Marshall, and Moberly has NCMC games left against Boonville and Mexico.

Nonetheless, no one is denying the NCMC crown is on the line Friday.

"This is the conference championship," St. Clair said.

Scouting Moberly: The Spartans, ranked No. 5 in Class 4, has outscored its competition 235-57 this season. Moberly has a 48-18 Week 1 victory over Blair Oaks to its name. Blair Oaks is ranked No. 8 in Class 2.

Senior quarterback Justin Connaway spearheads Moberly's shotgun attack. He's 59-of-113 passing for 818 yards with nine touchdowns and no interceptions. Junior Dupree Alexander has 17 receptions for 346 yards with two touchdowns, and senior Blake Joiner has 19 catches for 217 yards with five TDs.

Junior Gregg Bain leads the rushing attack with 616 yards on 82 carries with seven TDs. Senior linebacker Colton Tremain tops the defense with 61 total tackles.

"This is the type of game we need," St. Clair said. "This time of year, you've got to find out where you're at exactly. We've had our challenges, but Friday will be a big one."


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