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Tuesday, October 07, 2014

Big Game in a Small Town

For one Friday night the football spotlight of the Miami Valley was on Lewisburg.  The Covington – North game was chosen as game of the week by Channel 2.  A win would give the winning team a step up in the conference title race and a boatload of computer points for the playoffs.  There was not one, not two, but three camera’s shooting film clips for their respective TV stations. Being featured as game of the week meant that Channel 2 and some of their sponsors were set up in the parking lot during the pre-game. With the spotlight on, the North Panthers did not disappoint as for the first time in 15 years, they beat the Covington Buccaneer’s.  Additionally, this was the first regular season conference loss by Covington since 2009.

The North defense was very domineering early on.  Covington must have felt like the field was only 50 yards long, as most of the first half was played in the Covington half of the field.  Covington did mount a drive late in the second quarter after an interception. But opted to go for a field goal on 4th down with seconds left and the kick went wide.  But otherwise the team was held to 3 and outs on many of their possessions.

The North offense was on a mission during their first drive.  They sliced through the Bucc defense and Garrett Woodyard scored from 4 yards out to put North on the board.  North drew paydirt again the second quarter thanks to an improbable pass on 4th and 13 to Kody Cordes that kept a drive alive.  Again it was Garrett that lugged the ball across the goal from a yard out for the score.  So at the half the score was 14-0.

Late in the third quarter North put together another nice drive that began at their own 21 and ended with Blake Lawson catching a 27 yard TD pass.  On Covingtons next drive they switched from their triple option - using  misdirection and the speed option to get decent yardage.  They were able to score, but didn’t convert the point after.

But this was as close as Covington would get as North’s Garrett Woodyard scored on a 10 yard run and then Trey Summers made the last score of the night as he gathered in a Covington fumble and sprinted about 35 yards for the touchdown.  North had responded to a big game in a big way, with a 36-6 win.

An understandably elated coach Derringer commented after the game, “We spread the ball around quite a bit, we are an unselfish team.  We have great senior leadership and they don’t care who gets credit. Defensively we played very, very well tonight.  To Covington’s credit they made some adjustments when we pulled our secondary back to not give up the big play.  They began to run the speed option and that is how they got their touchdown.  But it’s a great feeling to get this win.“

Colton Booth: “We knew that he would be more of a running quarterback.  He’s made some good decisions when he has had to.   He is a threat on the edge and really anywhere on the field.  If we are passing, he can tuck the ball and take off.  He has worked really hard to get where he is at. “

Next week’s bye: “I have mixed feelings, we would like to keep the momentum going. We didn’t want to take the bye week, we wanted to play all 10 games.  But in two weeks we play Miami East and that will be the next big game of year.  We have two weeks to prepare for them. There is still a lot of good football to be played.  South is having a great year – I said at the beginning of the season that they could be an underdog team that will surprise a lot of people.  And National Trail – they beat us last year.  So we have 3 big ball games that we will take one game at time, and hope to make the playoffs. North still does not have a playoff win – it’s been a long time coming.”

Stats:  Rushing – Booth 8/48; Woodyard 11/43; Dustin Green 12/91; Kody Cordes 6/7; Passing – Booth 4/13 82 yds; Receiving – Woodyard 1/8, Lawson 1/28, Cordes 2/46; Tackles – Jordan Overcash 14, Josh Mcintosh 15, Trey Summers 11, Booth 10, Lawson 11.