South used a gritty defense and a grind it out offense to overwhelm Arcanum in week 5 CCC action. Arcanum desperately tried to convert 4th down’s several times during the game to keep drives alive, but South denied Arcanum the conversion each time and took over on downs. Their grind it out offense got stronger as the game went on. And those carries that went for 3-4 yards a pop in the first quarter lengthened to 7-8 yards per carry in the second half.
Arcanum also uses a ball possession offense, and to keep their drives alive they tried to convert 4th and short yardage several times during the game. When the run got stuffed by the hungry South defense on their first attempt, they next tried to use a fake punt at midfield. But Aaron Deaton made a big play and hit the ball carrier behind the line of scrimmage to give the Panthers the ball at midfield. Later in the game Arcanum tried to dump a short pass on 4th and 3, but again the South defense held firm and stopped yet another Arcanum drive.
Both JJ Utz and Anthony Augspurger had interceptions. Utz’s helped set up South’s first score of the night and Augspurger stopped a second drive where Arcanum was moving the ball into scoring range with the short pass. He snagged a pass in the middle of the field and ended the Trojans hopes of scoring a second touchdown.
Offensively South did pass the ball, but their running game kept Arcanum’s offense on the sidelines most of the game. After Utz’s interception, Augspurger capped the ensuing South drive with a 1 yard touchdown plunge. After having a touchdown called back by a hold, South scored again in their next drive when Joe Webb had a nice carry to the Arcanum 2, then scored on the next play. South’s last score of the first half was set up by a Sammy Shockey catch, then Wes Cole ran straight up the middle to score and put South up 21-0.
After stopping Arcanum on a 4th and 1 play on their opening drive of the second half, South marched downfield and Shockey scored on a 6 yard run. At this point, Arcanum changed up tactics and went to the short pass - running mainly short out patterns that are hard to defend. They scored and then did a onsides kick that worked. The Trojan stands came alive as the momentum seemed to be all Trojans. Arcanum threatened to make it a 2 touchdown game. But on a 4th and 3 play in South territory, Arcanum’s pass fell incomplete and South took over on downs.
South went back to work, they moved the ball to midfield and South’s Wes Cole broke loose for 46 yards and a touchdown. On South’s next series there was a rare play where Cole was back to pass and the ball bounced off of a defender – the ball came right back to quarterback Cole who pulled it in and even got a few yards out of the deal. Shockey would score again in the final stanza and Jared Cottingim ended South’s scoring with a Jacob Bassler touchdown pass where he had to fight thru a defender to catch a pass in the endzone. It was a 49-7 South victory.
“That’s the best that we’ve played all year,” stated Coach Cates, “our earlier games we played 2 good quarters or 3 quarters. But this game we played well all 4 quarters – particularly defensively. We held them on 4th and short on several different occasions. Our defensive line and in particular Aaron Deaton and Tristen Sizemore had an awesome game. "
Offense: “Our offensive line had a good night too – one of our starters went down and his back up came in and did a great job. Wes Cole made a lot of good decisions for us at quarterback. Anthony Augspurger had a great game. Sammy Shockey used his speed to spark our offense. “
Strong second half’s this season: “A lot of that is our conditioning. We condition every day – but they hate Mondays. That is the day that we work we hardest, but it pays off on Friday nights. We push that in a close game, the team that is in better shape is going to win. We also have some big physical kids, and when you keep bringing it and bringing it every down – it wears the other team down and they start to wilt.”
Mississinewa Valley: “Coach Graher has been there for a long time. They have an offense similar to Ansonia. He coaches them up very well, the team will be disciplined. We need to keep from biting on their misdirection and be disciplined as well on defense. On offense we need to spread them out do to them like we did to Ansonia on offense. We need to get off to a fast start and not let them hang around, or they can be dangerous and we will find ourselves in a dog fight. “