Saturday, October 26, 2013

North Prevails Against South



Twin Valley South Played with North for 3 quarters.  Both teams have playoff aspirations, South desperately needed the win to keep their slim playoff hopes alive and North needed to cement their place in the top 8 of the district. The halftime score was 14-7 in favor of North. And entering the 4th quarter it was a two score game, 20-7. Then the wheels fell off as North's stalwart defense held South to that touchdown on the night and scored on a Colton Boothe interception. The offense went to work and that resulted in a 35-7 victory for North.  South was able to move the ball, but just when they sniffed the red-zone, North put up a defensive stand and made them turn over the ball on downs.  South had several good drives that died inside the 30 yard line of North.

It was senior night for TVS since it was their last home game. And they honored their seniors by entering the field from the East end of the stadium as the teams used to do years ago.  The senior players entered the field as a unit and the underclass players lined up with the band to form an entrance for them.

North found the endzone first on a 31 yard touchdown pass from Hutchins to Austin Johnson.  But South answered right back. Jordan Burns returned the North kick off to about the North 35.  And 2 plays later Joe Webb scored on a 33 yard touchdown run.  It was game on.  The teams battled back and forth for the remainder of the first half. Late in the second quarter Wes Cole was able to pick off an Austin Hutchins pass, but a North sack on third down forced South to punt.  North began their last drive of the half at the TVS 43 yard line and after advancing the ball, Hutchins threw a 25 yard strike to Austin Elmore.  This gave North their 14-7 halftime lead.

In the second half, it looked like South might be able to strike early.  Darren Brown intercepted a North pass and gave South the ball at the North 37.  But North forced South to give up the ball on downs at the 25. North must have made some halftime adjustments, because their running game improved in the second half and Colton Booth was able to run 40 yards for a North score.  Late in the 3rd quarter South again threatened, but North stopped this drive at the 26.

So as the teams entered the last quarter it was still a close game 20-7 in favor of North.  But the game went into a downward spiral in a hurry for South. North had been forced to punt and South had the ball in good field position at the 47 yard line. But a South pass was picked off by Colton Booth and ran back 85 yards for a touchdown. So that play was a 14 point swing - instead of South getting the ball at about the 15 in the redzone and a chance of making it a one score game, North got the score and made it a 3 touchdown lead.

This seemed to take the wind out of South's sails.  Austin Hutchins padded the score with a punt return to the 11 yard line where it seemed like every South Panther got a hand on him, but couldn't bring him down. Then he passed for a 10 yard TD reception to Austin Johnson.  So North makes their playoff hopes more definite and have pretty much dashed South's chances. But North battles another team next week with playoff ambitions in National Trail, while South travels to play the beast in the East as in Miami East.


Sunday, October 20, 2013

Vikings Defeat Panthers in Overtime



In the early going North seemed to dominate. They used two clock eating drives to go up 14-0 early in the 2nd quarter.  But any thoughts that Miami East would just tuck tail and fade away were quickly dashed as they bounced back to tie the score.  And North had to go to the air as Miami East began to smother the running game.  Meanwhile Miami East was able to get chunks of yardage through the pass themselves. And although North lead at halftime 21-14, the East defense closed them out in the second half.  Finally tying the game in the 4th quarter.  The game went to overtime and East won the toss and elected let North go first. North was unable to score and East kicked about a 20 yard field goal to seal the win 24-21.

North really dominated the first quarter. They used the run almost exclusively to grind out yardage against East.  The first two scores were by quarterback Austin Hutchins.  Then East bounced back - they returned a kickoff to the North 34 and worked the short field for a score.  Later a Miami East punt was muffed by North and again they worked the short field for a touchdown.  The 14 all tie was broken by Garrett Woodyard who carried the ball in from 8 yards to put North up 21-14.

The Miami East defense pretty much took away the run in the second half, and North's offense sputtered. And when two closely matched teams are playing, a lot of times the team that makes the fewest mistakes will win.  North had a break down on special teams to set up the first East score, the second score was by a muffed punt reception, and the tying touchdown likewise was set up by a fluke play by North. Set up to punt the ball was snapped over the punters head.  The punter ran back to the endzone and got the ball and then was actually able to get the punt off.  But with all the scrambling, the coverage again broke down and East returned the ball all the way to the 8 yard line where they scored a few plays later to tie the game at 21 all.

The North defense put some heat on the Miami East offense and were able to rush the quarterback effectively and sacked him several times. And that seemed to slow down the success that East had with the pass. So neither team was moving the ball well the rest of the 4th quarter. And the game went to overtime where the Miami East defense pretty much held North in place for 4 plays.  And when it was their turn they moved the ball to about the 10 where they put the game in hands of their place kicker who cooly iced a 20 yard field goal for the hard earned victory.

This game was fight for second place in the CCC and more importantly for homefield advantage in the playoffs.  Miami East controls their destiny with 2 games left in the season.  North has to make sure they win out to make the playoffs.  North plays at South next week, while East travels to Bradford.