Vandeet Keychains
click on image to visit website:
TCN Keychain in Walnut

Twin Valley Mold and Tool

button BioWaveGo

Sunday, October 07, 2012

North Playoff Hopes Still Alive

Click here to see more game pics

With Covington steam rolling thru the Cross County Conference, it leaves everyone else fighting for second place and also for a chance at the playoffs.  That was the situation for the Miami East – Tri-County North game. Both teams have had losses, Miami East came into the game 4-2 and North was 3-3.  Neither team could afford another loss and still have a decent shot  to make the playoffs.  So it was a must win game for both teams.

The weather for the North game against Miami East was about what you would expect for football in October.   After the sun went down, temperatures rapidly dropped into the 40’s.  Then the rain came.  It was sporadic in the first quarter, then it became a steady drizzle that made conditions miserable on the field and in the stands.  The weather became a factor in the game but not quite as expected. 

A rule of thumb in football is that a muddy field favors the bigger, heavier team.  They get better traction.  And North has a small line this year.  But being a smaller team also meant that North was quicker. So as the ball got slippery and both teams fumbled as the night went on, it was North that was able to pounce on fumbles and gain an advantage in the turnover department.  Also North was able to connect on two critical passes for scores despite the slick conditions.

Miami East was on the scoreboard first, putting together a nice drive after recovering a North fumble in the last half of the first quarter.  North quickly answered at the open of the second quarter with a 25 yard carry by quarterback Austin Hutchins.  Miami East did a nice job of mixing the run and pass in their next drive to go up again by a touchdown.  North would answer again in exciting fashion.  Billy Derringer ran a deep route and the ball was slightly underthrown.  The defender was in position to catch the ball, but Derringer did not give up on the play. He adjusted and came back to the ball.  As both came down with the pass, he was able to snatch the ball from the defenders hands and run the ball in for the score to tie the game. 

Miami East scored on a field goal inside the 10 yard as time expired to get a 17-14 lead.   Conditions worsened on the field as the rain steadily poured down at halftime.  North would be the beneficiaries of not 1, not 2, but 3 fumbles that ended Miami East drives in the second half. JJ MacPherson and Austin Johnson were the ones who recovered for North.  Offensively both teams were doing Woody Hayes style football – slogging it out in the trenches with an occasional pass thrown to keep the other team off balance.

As the fourth quarter opened, North continued a drive to the endzone, urged on by a small but vocal contingent of hardy North fans.  Billy Derringer caught an Austin Hutchins pass for a 22 yard touchdown to cap the drive and give North their first lead of the night.   Now it was time for the defense to do its job.  The first Miami East drive ended with 3 plays and a punt.  North did likewise on their possession.  Time was running out for East on their last drive and they had the wind in their faces.  This last drive started at the 05:45 mark and now they went for it on 4th downs, converting twice – including a 4th and 9 with 01:09 left that put the ball on the 45 of North.  But Miami East had to go for it on 4th and 11 and this third time rolled snake eyes as the receiver caught the ball but was tackled by a North defender short of the first down marker.  It was a gallant effort by both teams, but now North was able to take the victory formation with seconds left and take a knee for a hard earned 21-17 victory.  

Next Fridays game of the week will be the North - South game. 

No comments: