The Tribe defeated the St. Louis Slam 63-42 to win Division 11 of the Women's Football Alliance, and finish the regular season with a 7-1 record.
The Tribe won the coin toss and elected to defer to the second half of play. The Slam received Amanda Shell's kick-off, and after a short return, the St. Louis offense took the field at its own 40 yard line. After moving the ball into Tribe territory, the Slam fumbled the football, which Kansas City recovered at the 38 yard line. Jenny Schmidt found Larisha Graves, and then Courtney Hampton for back-to-back 11 yard completions to move into Slam territory. Graves added a four yard gain, and then Schmidt connected with Guscott for a 21 yard pass to the 15 yard line. Schmidt completed the drive with a 15 yard strike to Hampton for the score. Shell added the extra point, and the Tribe led 7-0 with 11:34 remaining in the first quarter.
The Slam answered on the ensuing drive, marching down the field on a series of runs before completing a 20 yard pass to Keyonna Smith for the score. After the PAT, the score stood at 7-7 with 7:14 left in the initial period.
Graves picked up the line drive kick-off and returned it 14 yards near mid-field to start the Tribe's second drive of the game. A combined attack of Graves' runs and completions to Guscott led the Tribe to the 14 yard line. A completion to Mindy White advanced the ball inside the five, and the drive ended successfully as Schmidt hit Liz Sowers in the endzone for the TD. Shell's PAT went wide left, and the Tribe led 13-7 with just under five minutes to go in the first quarter.
Shell's subsequent kick-off sailed inside the 10 yard line, but Kate Evers returned the ball to the 26 yard line. The Tribe defense forced a turnover on downs, and the offense resumed play on the Slam 34. Schmidt connected with Sowers, and then White to advance inside the redzone. An attempted pass to Sowers took a lucky bounce and fell into Hampton's hands for the score. Graves added the two-point conversion, and the Tribe's lead increased to 21-7 with 1:27 left in the quarter. Despite making progress into Tribe territory, the Slam's possession was thwarted when Megan Franco intercepted the ball at the 40 yard line.
Schmidt quickly found Sowers for a 12 yard completion to move into Slam territory nearing the end of the initial quarter of play. After resuming play, Schmidt hit Guscott for a 28 yard gain down the sideline. Guscott and Hampton each ran the ball for short yardage, and then Schmidt connected with Graves across the middle to move to the Slam 11 yard line. Hampton reigned in the next pass and tip-toed along the sidelines for the score. After Shell's PAT, the Tribe led 28-7 with 11:56 remaining in the first half.
St. Louis game out with guns blazing on the first play of the drive and completed a 54 yard pass to Kate Evers for the touchdown. The extra point was good, and the lead was sliced in half at 28-14 with 11:41 remaining in the half. The Slam kick-off backed the Tribe up to the five yard line. The Tribe combined Graves' runs with Schmidt to Sowers completions to move the ball past mid-field. Schmidt then hit Hampton for an 11 yard gain, which placed the ball at the Slam 33 yard line. However, Keyonna Smith intercepted the following play and returned the ball 75 yards for a Slam score, closing the gap to 28-14 after the extra point, with 7:33 remaining in the second period.
The kick-off sailed out of bounds, and the Tribe offense started from its own 40. The offense failed to move the chains, and punted the ball back to the Slam on fourth down. The short kick went out of bounds at the St. Louis 42, where the Slam offense started its drive. The offense marched down the field, piecing together short carries, and capped off the scoring drive with an eight yard run by Evers for the TD. After the extra point, the teams were tied at 28-28 with 3:51 remaining in the first half.
Hampton fielded the kick-off on the bounce and returned the ball 20 yards to the 37 yard line. A quick run by Graves, followed by a completion to Hampton and then White moved the ball to the Slam 25 yard line. However the Tribe failed to convert on the next series and turned the ball over on downs at the Slam 24 with under two minutes remaining in the second quarter. St. Louis could not convert and ultimately punted the ball back to the Tribe. Kansas City took a knee to go into half-time with the score tied at 28.
St. Louis kicked off to start the second half of play. Sowers took the ball 10 yards to the Tribe 47. Graves advanced the ball 13 yards, followed by an 11 yard completion to Guscott. The Tribe were momentarily backed up after a false start, but Schmidt hit Sowers perfectly in stride for the 31 yard touchdown reception. Shell split the uprights, making the score 35-28 with 11:56 remaining in the third quarter.
The Tribe defense forced another Slam punt, which Liz Sowers fielded at the 33 yard line. The possession was short lived as St. Louis stripped the football from Graves on the second play of the drive. However, Liz Sowers returned the favor when she took the ball away from the intended Slam receiver three plays later, giving KC the ball on the 24. Back-to-back passes to Guscott advanced the ball to the 40, before a Tribe penalty temporarily stalled the drive. However, Graves broke for big yardage with a pass in the backfield to move into St. Louis territory at the 38 yard line. The tandem of Schmidt and Sowers connected on two of the next three plays, resulting in a 16 yard touchdown completion. Shell's PAT increased the Tribe lead to 42-28 with just over five minutes remaining in the third period.
The Tribe defense came up big once again, forcing a three and out. KC took over on the Slam 25 yard line after no return. Guscott took the initial pass 60 yards to the Slam 15 yard line, and then caught the ensuing pass for a 15 yard touchdown pass from Schmidt. Shell's extra point resulted in a 49-28 Tribe lead with 3:45 remaining in the third quarter.
It appeared the Tribe defense forced another three and out, but a roughing the pass penalty gave St. Louis new life, and the penalty advanced the ball into KC territory. Then, a series of short runs moved the ball inside the redzone, where another Tirbe penalty gave the Slam a first and goal from the nine. Taylor Hay took the ball up the middle for the score. After the extra point, the scoreboard read 49-35 with 14:49 remaining in the game.
Shannon De Clue returned the Slam kick-off 16 yards to the St. Louis 49. The Tribe failed to convert, and punted the ball back to St. Louis. After a bobbled reception, the Slam recovered the ball at the 35 yard line. A bad snap on third down moved the ball back to the 12 yard line, where St. Louis was forced to punt. The Tribe chose not to field the kick, and took over at its own 46 yard line. The Tribe elected to punt on fourth and one, and St. Louis took possession at the 21 yard line. Another three and out by the Slam led to a Guscott 26 yard punt return to the St. Louis 39. Graves rammed through the middle for a 16 yard gain. The drive ultimately ended when Schmidt threw a pass to Guscott on the boundry of the endzone and Guscott managed to tightrope the line to stay in bounds. Shell once again split the goal posts, and the Tribe led 56-35 with less than five minutes in the game.
Lindsay Downs intercepted the pass on the St. Louis drive, and the Tribe offense regained possession at its own 40 yard line, but an illegal procedure penalty moved them back to the 35. However, Liz Sowers broke a short reception for a 38 yard gain to the Slam 27 yard line. Schmidt then connected with White on a scramble to move the ball to the 17 to go into the two minute warning. Liz Sowers finished the drive with a 16 yard reception for the touchdown. After Shell's PAT, the Tribe led 63-35 with 1:01 remaining.
The Slam returned Shell's kick-off to the 31 yard line, and Kate Evers took the ball 69 yards for the touchdown on the initial play of the drive. After the PAT, the Slam closed the lead to 63-42 with 42 seconds remaining. The Tribe offense took a knee to end the game.
Defensively, Leslie Gent led with 7.5 tackles, followed by Magdalen Obiefuly with 6.5, and Mindy White with five. Liz Sowers, Lindsay Downs and Megan Franco each added an interception.
The victory earned the Tribe a first round play-off bye. The team will be back in action on June 30th at Center High School, taking on the winner of the Minnesota Machine and the St. Louis Slam. Kick-off time is 6:00 p.m.