KANSAS CITY – If the Hickman football team is looking for a bright spot from a 34-13 loss at the hands of Rockhurst, the gutsy play of senior linebacker and receiver Dylan Rodes would be a good place to start.
Rodes had an impact on both sides of the ball, leading the Kewpies in both tackles and receptions and scoring on a fumble recovery despite the fact that his shoulder briefly fell out of its socket during the second quarter.
“You don’t really feel anything when you’re out there,” Rodes said of playing through the injury. “The adrenaline just kicks in.”
Rodes's best play of the game came when Rockhurst’s Dylan Veatch fumbled while running an option towards the left side of the Kewpie defense. Rodes scooped up the ball and ran it in 65 yards for the touchdown.
On offense, Rodes led the team in receiving, catching three of Hickman’s seven completions for a total of 47 yards.
He also ran it out of a strange formation that the Kewpies brought out for Friday’s contest. Three Hickman players lined up in the backfield with quarterback Logan Fitch, who, despite the full house in the backfield, still took the snap from the shotgun. As one of those three players, Rodes carried it twice for 12 yards.
However, a positive individual performance from Rodes was hardly enough to take the sting out of the defeat for the Kewpies.
“I told the guys that if you’re happy with this loss, there’s something wrong with you,” Hickman coach Jason Wright said.
The Hawklets dominated the game with more balance than they showed last week in a 40-21 win at Rock Bridge. In just over a half of play, quarterback Frank Arbanas threw more times (8) than he did in all of last week’s game (7). He threw for one score and ran for two more, including a 54-yard scamper on the first Hawklet offensive play of the second half that took the life out of any comeback attempt the Kewpies may have mounted.
“It was kind of a surprise to us,” Wright said of Arbanas’ impact on the game. “Our plan was to make the quarterback beat us and that’s exactly what happened.”
Hickman will look to rebound next week in its final tune up before district play. The Kewpies head to Gateway Tech Friday, Oct. 8 for a 7 p.m. kickoff.