Butler sets school record with seven interceptions in road win

Butler sets school record with seven interceptions in road win

FORT SCOTT, Kan. – Butler football set a school record with seven interceptions while freshman running back Grahm Roberts scored three rushing touchdowns in a 35-14 road win over Fort Scott on Saturday at Frary Field.

The Grizzlies' previous record for most interceptions in a game was six, which came on Oct. 14, 2010 in a home win over Highland.

Butler (6-2 overall, 5-1 conference) picked off five interceptions in the second half, including a 30-yard pick for a score by Tay Gowan to open the second half. Both Gowan and Robert Hatchett each had two picks in the victory.

Fort Scott opened the contest with a pick-six of its own when Dirion Hutchins scored on a 39-yard interception return on Butler's second play of the opening drive.

Roberts scored all three touchdowns during a 3:52 span in the opening quarter, with his first touchdown coming on a 19-yard scoring run up the middle during the Grizzlies' third drive, capping an eight-play, 45-yard drive.

Roberts' next two scores were both set up by interceptions from Juwan Mitchell and Gowan. Mitchell had a 44-yard return to the Fort Scott 11, then Roberts hit paydirt three plays later with a 2-yard rushing score.

Moments later, Gowan picked off a pas and nearly scored a touchdown, but stepped out at the Greyhound 5-yard line. Roberts then added his third touchdown on a 5-yard score with 2:19 to play in the quarter.

Fort Scott managed to run only two plays on its opening drive to start the second half when backup quarterback Justin Agner was hit while throwing a pass towards the sideline. Gowan was able to make the interception and went untouched 30 yards for the score to put Butler up 28-7.

The next two Greyhound drives ended with Agner throwing interceptions to Hunter Kier and Hatchett. Butler was forced to punt after Kier's pick, while Hatchett returned his 15 yards to the Fort Scott 10-yard line.

Butler's offense stalled at the Fort Scott 5 after three plays, but the Greyhounds were called offsides when the Grizzlies set up for a field goal. With the ball moved half the distance, the Grizzlies elected to go for the touchdown on fourth down, as Ja'kevious Vickers scores from two yards out for a 35-7 Butler lead.

Xavier Hinkle had the Grizzlies' sixth interception of the evening early in the fourth quarter, then Hatchett grabbed his second interception of the game during Fort Scott's final offensive possession to help Butler set the school record.

Vickers led Butler in rushing with 89 yards on 21 carries, while Roberts had 49 yards on 15 attempts. Butler gained just 216 yards of total offense, with 155 yards coming on the ground.

Jordan Smith had a team-high nine tackles with five solos and three sacks to lead the Grizzly defense. Kier added seven tackles and four solos, while D'Anthony Bell and Jacoby Jones each had six tackles.

Next up for Butler will be an afternoon home contest against Ellsworth, Iowa. Kickoff from BG Products Veterans Sports Complex is at 1:30 p.m.

NOTES: Butler won its ninth straight game over Fort Scott and improved to 53-30-2 all-time in the series. The Grizzlies also won its fifth consecutive game at Frary Field… Grahm was the first Grizzly to score three rushing touchdowns since Kobe McCrary accomplished the feat in a 2015 home win over Dodge City.