Bluffton rolled past May River, 50-0, in the team’s regional opener last Friday. The score wasn’t the real headline, though. It was how Bluffton got there.
As reported by Bluffton Today, placekicker D.J. Chappelear tied the national record for made field goals in a game by connecting on nine in his team’s victory; according to MaxPreps, the national record of nine was previously held solely by Dominic Gutierrez of Menaul High in Albuquerque.
Perhaps more remarkable than Chappelear’s nine field goals is the fact that they came in succession; Bluffton scored three touchdowns in the first quarter. After that, all the team’s points came from Chappelear’s leg with the exception of a lone safety in the second quarter. The kicker hit from distances of 32, 30, 26, 33, 36, 47, 34, 47, and 26 yards. He even missed a pair of kicks, too, just for good measure.
“Our idea was that we were going to get two touchdowns, it ended up being three and that’s alright, but the goal was to make two touchdowns and kick field goals the rest of the game,” Chappelear told Bluffton Today. “It was pretty great. It was pretty fun.
“Tonight I really displayed how I can be a help to the team, and kickers aren’t just kickers – they’re part of the team, I felt more part of this football team than I ever have.”
One would hope Chappelear would be an integral part of the team if he’s scored 30 of its 50 points. He may never be able to top those nine field goals, but the fact that he hit nine will certainly make his coaches feel comfortable coming back to him with a big kick in the clutch. It doesn’t hurt that has range apparently extends beyond 50 yards, either.