SHELBYVILLE, IL. — Four Big Plays gave Central A&M the edge at Shelbyville on Friday night as they held off a late Ram charge to win, 27-20.
Jason Pokalsey broke free for 64 yards and scored on the second play of the game. Zach Ballinger had an 81 yard TD run on the 1st play of a drive in the 2nd quarter.
In the 3rd, A&M QB Nielson hit a wide open Richardson for an 81 yard pass play that went to the 3 yard line. Butts ran it in on the next play.
In the 4th quarter, Butts broke free on the first play of a possession for a 27 yard TD, after a short punt gave A&M possession inside Ram territory.
Besides those four big plays, A&M was held to just 67 yards of total offense.
After Pokalsey's early TD, Trent Chepan kicked the extra point.
Shelbyville had a sustained drive on their first possession, going 68 yards on nine plays. Ram QB Lucas Duckett hit tight end Luke McConnell as he crossed the end zone for the final three yards. Dylan Patch kicked the extra point and the game was tied with 8:00 left in the 1st, 7-7.
With 8:26 in the 2nd period, Zach Ballinger broke tackles and 81 yards for a TD on the first play of a possession after Ram punter Wyatt Fox had backed A&M to their own 19 yard line. The kick was missed and A&M was up 13-7.
Shelby had a chance to go ahead before the half. Shelby had a 51 yard, 9-play drive for a TD pass to Patch with a few second left in the half. That would have tied the score and the extra point would have given the Rams a 14-13 lead.
However, there was a flag on the play for illegal procedure and the TD was called back. The next pass was incomplete as the half ended.