I hate waiting. Hate it. Hate it. Hate it.
Patience is a virtue—and I have precious little of it. In the modern world of instant access, waiting is something we just don’t have to do much of anymore. And I like it that way. So pardon me if I find it rather infuriating that I have to wait three weeks to watch the Ladue and MICDS football teams get together again and blow the bulbs on the scoreboard out.
In case you missed it, and shame on you if you did, Ladue High School hopped on a bus and rode all of a mile up Warson Road to take on MICDS in the first game of district play Saturday. MICDS scored 14 points in the last 80 seconds to stun Ladue with a 56-55 come-from-behind victory. It was one of the more incredible games of the season and, you would have to believe, the best these rivals have ever played.
And yes, I’m calling them rivals. Games like this ignite rivalries, even friendly ones like Ladue and MICDS. The two teams, though neighbors, have more fierce rivals within their own leagues. MICDS wants nothing more than to hand John Burroughs School a beating in anything from football to freshmen checkers. Ladue relishes any chance it gets to knock Clayton’s socks off in, well, anything.
But Saturday, like last season, the two teams were forced into playing one another when the Missouri State High School Activities Association drew up its district tournaments. MICDS, Ladue, Clayton High School and University City School were all lumped in together. So, for those who don’t know, those four teams play each other one time in a round-robin format over the course of the last three weeks of the regular season.
The two teams that have the best records (or most points if there is the need for a tie-breaker) will advance from the district into the playoff bracket. Not to take anything away from those fine folks at Clayton and the Pride of U. City, but I have a hard time imagining either MICDS or Ladue not advancing from this district. The two teams that advance would then have an opportunity to play one another in the sectional round if they made it that far—which would give us the rematch that I’m wishing was being played, I don’t know, tomorrow.
Saturday’s instant classic at MICDS had highs, lows and everything in between. Ladue senior running back Deavin Edwards delivered the goods. He sliced, diced, shredded, obliterated, torched and lit up that MICDS defense for 368 rushing yards and six, count’em, six touchdowns. He went 90 yards on his last touchdown of the game with less than three minutes to play. “He’s an outstanding football player,” Ladue coach Mike Tarpey says.
MICDS coach Josh Smith says they’re drawing up stuff in the dirt to try and get more guys around him. “He found a way to make plays,” Smith notes. Making plays is something MICDS senior Foster Bundy knows how to do. A do-it-all wide receiver/ defensive back/kicker, Bundy caught five passes for 177 yards and four touchdowns, the last two of which came as time was running out. He even intercepted Ladue’s last ditch effort with less than 20 seconds to play to seal the game.
“We never give up,” Bundy says. Slinging the ball to Bundy was MICDS quarterback Thomas Militello. All he did was throw for 477 yards and six touchdowns.
“We didn’t want to get into districts without our best foot forward,” Militello says. Sequels rarely live up to the original. I understand that. But something tells me when these two teams get together there will once again be fireworks, drama and spectacular performances. It is, even for me, worth waiting for.