Round two of Maryville/St. Pius X was every bit the mismatch as the first go-around.
At times, maybe even a little bit worse.
Class 3 No. 2 Maryville completed an amazingly dominant run to the Class 3 District 8 title with a 48-7 thumping of sixth-seeded St. Pius X in the championship game Monday night at the Hound Pound.
It was Maryville's third consecutive win by at least 40 points in district play, this one coming against an opponent they beat earlier this year 43-7.
District champions for the fifth year in a row, the Hounds have reached their furthest point in the playoffs since 2009 and will face Center in the quarterfinals Saturday at 1:30 p.m. in Kansas City.
St. Pius X, which entered on a five-game win streak, finished at 5-7.
"This program that has been built here by Chris Holt and the coaching staff set this team up to accomplish what we've done," said Maryville first-year head coach Matt Webb. "My expectations coming in here were to be where we are right now, focused on winning one ball game at a time. We've had a good group of senior leadership and these kids have really committed themselves to that goal."
Maryville (12-0) played flawlessly most of the first half, putting together six consecutive scoring drives and seven consecutive defensive stops to build a 41-0 halftime lead.
This afforded Maryville the luxury to sit their starters in the second half.
The Hounds scored 34 first quarter points, their largest amount of the season.
Maryville incurred five third downs on its first six drives and converted all of them.
They outgained Pius 370-41 in the first half and finished with a 449-99 edge in total yards.
"That's how we want to play," said Webb. "We came out very focused. That's hard to do. We deal with young people and different practice schedules in the playoffs. Playing on a Monday night of school week is different. It's hard to do to come out and execute at that level. I was very pleased with that tonight and just the whole series of the way the game unfolded at the beginning."
A game after throwing for 300 yards in the first half, Maryville switched gears on offense and ran for 248 against Pius with four touchdowns.
Sophomore running back Brody McMahon started and completed the first half scoring with rushing touchdowns.
Peyton Mizera and Derek Stiens each scored on runs of 30-plus yards in the first quarter. Stiens finished as Maryville's leading rusher with 105 yards on 15 carries. Mizera carried it four times for 66 yards.
Trent Dredge added a 2-yard scoring run in the fourth quarter, accounting for Maryville's only second half points.
Page 2 of 3 - Quarterback Jonathan Baker was 9-13 passing in the first half with a pair of touchdowns, giving him 28 on the season—double his junior year total.
Baker connected with Treyton Burch on a 24-yard score and Kyle Leslie on a 5-yard score.
"Matt Houchin (Maryville's offensive coordinator) does an outstanding job of utilizing our athletes and utilizing our offense," said Webb. "We talk about being multiple and being able to throw the ball when they stack people in the box and run the ball when they don't. We've just been able to go in and out and play a numbers game the whole season."
Maryville's defense yielded only seven second half points again to St. Pius X, marking the 10th time in 12 games they've held an opponent under 14.
Warrior quarterback Grant Gavin put up better numbers than the game before, but finished only 13-29 with 84 yards and three interceptions. The Warrior ground game netted only 18 yards.
Nicholas Kelliher scored the Warriors lone touchdown on a 7-yard run, a play after the Warriors recovered a fumble at Maryville's 7-yard line.
The game was long over by then thanks to another early barrage by the Hounds that sucked away all the drama.
For the first time in the playoffs, the Hounds required longer than a minute to take the lead.
But not much more.
Maryville went 65 yards on six consecutive running plays and scored on a 1-yard run by McMahon to go up 7-0 with 10:39 left in the opening quarter.
The Hounds regained possession at midfield and scored three plays later on a 34-yard reverse run by Mizera. A missed extra point kept it at 13-0 not even four minutes into the game.
Pius punted the ball back to Maryville on third and 13, and Baker hit Burch in stride for a 24-yard touchdown to make it 20-0.
Baker's 5-yard strike to Leslie on third and goal put Maryville ahead 27-0 with 1:04 left in the third.
Two plays later, Gavin had a pass tipped and intercepted by Nally.
Maryville's next offensive play resulted in a 30-yard touchdown burst by Stiens for a 34-0 lead.
The Hound lead reached 41-0 on McMahon's scoring run from a yard out with 8:29 to play in the second.
This would remain the score at the half after the Hounds were stopped on each of their final two drives.
One of these followed an interception by linebacker Paden Maudlin.
Against Maryville's back-ups, St. Pius X put a temporary stop to the running clock with Kelliher's scoring run and threatened to draw closer after a second fumble by John Schenkel was recovered at the Hound 24.
Page 3 of 3 - But two failed gimmick plays were followed by an interception from sophomore lineman Jacob Cacek on a screen that was returned to the Warrior 41.
Maryville re-instated the running clock with Dredge's 1-yard run with 1:25 left in the third.
Both teams went scoreless in the fourth quarter.
Maryville has the next four days to prepare for Center which upset top-seeded Oak Grove 21-6 in the District 7 Finals.
Center (10-2) has only lost twice by a combined eight points to Smithville and Hogan Prep.