Tiger football crunches Raiders to reach 7-0

RUTLAND — The Middlebury Union High School football team took a major and decisive step toward an undefeated regular season and the No. 2 seed for the Division I playoffs on Friday, when the Tigers ran over host Rutland, 42-7.

The Tigers improved to 7-0 heading into their regular-season finale, a home game this Friday at 7 p.m. vs. BFA St. Albans (4-3). A win will nail down the No. 2 seed behind also undefeated St. Johnsbury, which has earned more quality points and will earn the top seed with a win vs. Lyndon on Saturday.

Rutland dropped to 5-2 and can hold onto the No. 4 seed with a win at eighth-place Hartford on Friday. Burr & Burton (6-1) can clinch the No. 3 seed by topping struggling Rice on Saturday.

Vs. the Raiders this past Friday the Tigers scored touchdowns on their first four tries and only allowed a touchdown in the game’s final minute.

 The Tigers gained almost 500 yards and held the Raiders to fewer than 200. MUHS halfback Tyler Buxton ran for 189 yards on 12 carries.

To get on the scoreboard, the Tigers moved 85 yards to take an 8-0 lead on a 14-yard run by quarterback Tim Goettelmann, with Buxton running in the conversion on a fake kick. A Buxton 50-yard TD run made it 14-0.

A 12-yard Goettelmann pass to Bode Rubright capped the Tigers’ next drive, which included another long Buxton run. The Raiders stopped the Tigers on their next drive after they recovered a fumble at midfield, but a roughing-the-kicker penalty gave them a second chance, and Goettelmann scored from 10 yards out, and it was 28-0 at the half.

In the second half Buxton rushed for two 18-yard TDs as the Tigers put the game out of reach. Goettelmann (69 yards on 11 attempts) Thatcher Trudeau (51 on 10) and Ian Ploof (91 on 13) all contributed to the MUHS ground game.

For the Raiders, Hunter Postemski ran for 71 yards on 21 attempts and scored the TD, and QB Owen Perry went 10 for 23 for 116 yards.

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