Backyard Brawl

Nixa's Steven Ward celebrates his touchdown on a blocked field-goal Friday at Ozark.

Steven Ward somewhat amazingly upped his streak of consecutive games with a blocked kick to three to provide one of the few highlights for Nixa in Friday’s 20-14 Backyard Brawl loss to Ozark.

Ward blocked a 48-yard field-goal attempt by the Tigers’ Thomas Rushing in the second quarter. He secured the ball and outran everyone en route to a 52-yard touchdown.

“I saw the ball, grabbed it, held it close to me and started running fo the goal,” Ward said. “I didn’t hear anybody behind me and felt like I was moving pretty fast. I got to the end zone and thought, ‘Oh my gosh, I just got a touchdown.’”

Last week, Ward preserved Nixa’s 10-7 win over Willard by blocking the Tigers’ attempt to tie on a 47-yard field-goal try.

Two weeks ago, he blocked a Republic extra-point attempt.

Opposing special teams coaches surely have taken note of Ward. He pointed out lineman Eli Caufield and Sam Davi have helped him on his way to a trio of blocks.

“The left defensive tackle opens a hole for me so I can run through therem: ward said. “Sometimes, I switch over and it confuses the offense and I have an open hole to run through.”

Ward did some checking on Nixa’s single-season school record for most blocked kicks in a season and reports it is four.

“I’m going for that record,” he said. “I’m on track to get it.”

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