116 3rd St SE
Cedar Rapids, Iowa 52401
MOUNT VERNON — Friday night's first-round playoff win tested No. 3 Mount Vernon more than the final score would indicate.
Sure, the Mustangs bested Centerville, 42-10, to advance to the second round of the Class 2A playoffs, but for three quarters, the season hung in the balance.
'It tested our team in a lot ways,' Mount Vernon Coach Lance Pederson said. 'Centerville came out with a great game plan; weather conditions are something that we're not used to this year.
'But our defense did a great job keeping us in the game until our offense started clicking.'
Trailing 14-10, Centerville took over at its own 20. But a bad Big Red snap on third down led to a loss of 14 yards.
'That really slowed things down,' Pedersen said. 'They had a lot of momentum at that time.'
Tyler Elliott took the ensuing punt 44 yards down to the Centerville 8. Zach Baker took the next handoff the rest of the way to give the Mustangs some breathing room, 21-10.
'When you get in situations like this where you are down against a team you shouldn't be losing to, guys just come together to overcome that stuff,' Mount Vernon quarterback Drew Adams said.
Mount Vernon scored three touchdowns in the fourth quarter, including a pair of Adams touchdown passes.
'Coaching adjustments at the half and shorting routes really helped,' said Adams, who finished 8 of 25 for 106 yards and two touchdowns.
Paul Ryan helped keep the Mustangs in the game early. He blasted through the middle untouched for a 25-yard touchdown run on the opening drive. Ryan had 48 yards of his 150 yards on that drive.
'Our O-line just kept driving,' said Ryan, the only Mustang without long sleeves.
'At times the O-line opened holes that anyone could run though, so all the credit goes to them.'
The Mustangs will take on district foe Williamsburg in the second round.