TERRE HAUTE —
The game was a little different even though the score – 28-10 instead of 27-10 during the regular season – was almost identical.
But one thing Friday night’s Class 5A Sectional 6 high school football game had in common with another game the second week of the season was an uncomfortable fact for Terre Haute South: the Braves failed to take advantage of some chances, and Terre Haute North made them pay.
The Patriots, clinching their second winning season in the past three years, get another home game next Friday against Avon.
Both teams came into the game with offensive game plans at the ready, each moving smartly down the field for a touchdown on its first series.
North had a Ricky Brookins drive, starting with a 19-yard kickoff return, to take an early lead. Brookins, who led all rushers Friday with 133 yards on 28 carries, had the ball on every play but one in the Patriots’ 67-yard, 10-play march. Then, on fourth-and-2, a play-action pass was available for Chris Barrett II to find Calvin Blank for the touchdown.
“The last game [against South] we knew we could run the ball on them,” Brookins explained after the game. “We knew what to do, and we executed.”
And why did he get so many carries in a row?
“It seemed like it was working,” the junior back said, “so why stop it?”
“We probably run power [a direct running play] more than any team in the state,” coach Chris Barrett of the Patriots said later. “This week we stressed our counter play, and we ran it until [the Braves] adjusted.”
South’s offense was definitely not fazed by North’s quick score, however, and got one back even more quickly. Danny Etling completed two passes, including a 37-yarder to Jonathan Weakley, then scored on a quarterback sneak with 6:03 still remaining in the first quarter.
Both these teams have been at least as good defensively as they have been offensively all season, however, and offense went away for awhile. Although its propensity for penalties kept North in miserable field position, the Braves could not take the lead -- and indeed didn’t get another first down the rest of the first half.
“Bottom line is, we needed to score more points,” coach Mark Raetz of the Braves summarized. “I thought we had field position in our favor and had some opportunies. We just didn’t convert.”
North finally got its first first down since its opening drive midway through the second quarter, and drove 67 yards in seven plays to take a 14-7 lead. The younger Barrett’s 41-yard completion to Charles Dillahunt set up the score, a 3-yard run by Brookins.
A sack of Etling by a blitzing Austin Lewis backed the Braves up, and North needed to go just 48 yards for its second touchdown of the second period. With just 12.3 seconds left before halftime, Lewis scored on a reverse, stretching the ball across the goal line for a 21-7 lead.
Then things got really frustrating for South.
The Braves had a 14-play drive to start the third quarter, a march started when punter Jeremy Patterson took off on his own for a 22-yard gain in the first minute of the half. The Braves got to third-and-2 at the 3-yard line, but Vasco Billberry snuffed a running play, and a delay-of-game penalty forced South to kick a field goal.
(And Patterson wound up his team’s leading rusher.)
North responded with its third straight scoring drive, going 80 yards in 12 plays. Dillahunt had a 17-yard reception on second-and-11, Brother Scank a killer 27-yard catch on third-and-10, and Dillahunt a 20-yard scoring pass on third-and-13.
South had other threats. Howie Lawson forced a fumble recovered by Dickie Rollins to give the Braves the ball at North’s 31-yard line, but Ryan Moshak got an interception for North; South got to North’s 12-yard line, only to give the ball back on downs at the 21; and a fumble recovery by Dillon Bell was nullified when the Braves again moved backward after having the ball at North’s 15.
Defensive end Calvin Blank, who had an all-state performance a week earlier at Indianapolis North Central, was the key to the last two stops with a deflected pass, a sack and a bull rush that drew a holding penalty.
“We wanted to come out tonight and fly to the ball, play nasty. Keep our poise -- most of the time -- and just play football,” he said after the game.
As far as his two big games in a row are concerned, he said, “I credit my defensive tackles; they’re getting double-teamed and giving me a lot of one-on-one at the edge. And our coverage [in the secondary] was great, so I’ve got all the time in the world to rush. Chris Spencer [the other defensive end] was keeping [the Braves] contained. It was a team effort.”
“I’m proud of the guys,” coach Barrett said. “In a big rivalry game like this, they’ve done what they’ve done all year. They prepared, they practiced hard, and when the other team does something, they just keep playing.
“We knew South had big-play capability. They’re a good football team and well coached, but we did what we needed to do to win.”
“I really felt like we had a good game plan going in, and had a good week of practice,” Raetz concluded. “We just came up short.”
North draws on aerial attack to overcome South
TERRE HAUTE —
The game was a little different even though the score – 28-10 instead of 27-10 during the regular season – was almost identical.
- High School
Terre Haute track and field athletes shine at Patriot Invitational
The Terre Haute North and Brown County girls and boys came out winners Saturday in the Patriot Invitational Track and Field Meet at Terre Haute North High School.
Prep roundup: North girls tennis beats ranked teams
Terre Haute North knocked off two state-ranked teams — No. 12 Fort Wayne Canterbury and No. 13 Delta — on its way to capturing the Delta Invitational championship for girls high school tennis Saturday.
Herrin's pitching effort leads South to win over Northview
When two good high school baseball teams get together, each using one of its better pitchers, the margin for error figures to be slim, and some defensive plays that weren’t made were the difference Friday evening as Terre Haute South beat Northview 7-1.
Stout home run sparks South softball at Sullivan
Terre Haute South junior Mariah Stout made her father proud and helped her team win its eighth game of the season at the same time Friday evening.
With the previously flat-looking Braves trailing host Sullivan 1-0 with two outs and nobody on base in the top of the second inning, Stout woke up her dugout mates by hammering a McKenzie Pirtle pitch over the fence in left-center field for a score-tying home run.
Terre Haute North baseball cruises past Warren Central
Terre Haute North swept a high school baseball doubleheader against Warren Central on Friday night by scores of 14-1 and 10-4.
PREP ROUNDUP: Sollars, Morrison lead West Vigo softball to win
Kaitlyn Sollars had a double, triple and four runs batted in and winning pitcher Leah Morrison contributed a pair of triples and a double to lead visiting West Vigo over Riverton Parke 14-1 in high school softball.
West Vigo baseball wins in rout
When Brandin Behringer drove in his first run Thursday evening, it gave West Vigo a short-lived lead in nonconference high school baseball.
The remainder of the Viking senior’s RBIs came four at a time in the bottom of the fourth inning, his grand-slam homer capping the second of consecutive seven-run innings that sent his team to a 15-3 win over visiting North Vermillion.
Prep roundup: Vikings get big hits to beat North Vermillion on softball diamond
The West Vigo softball team improved to 4-3 for the season with an 11-4 victory over North Vermillion on Thursday.
Leah Morrison busted the game open with a three-run double in the Vikings’ seven-run fourth inning.
Kenzie Little chipped in with a two-run triple in the sixth and Hannah Harden tossed a complete-game for the pitching win.
Prep baseball: Northview beats top-ranked Shakamak
Damon Bass pitched a three-hit shutout and struck out seven to lead Northview to a 7-0 high school baseball victory over Shakamak.
The visiting Knights blew open a tight game against Class A’s top-ranked team with a four-run seventh inning.
Austin Butts and Jake Harden combined for six hits for Northview.
PREP ROUNDUP: North girls tennis wins 5-0 at Plainfield
Terre Haute North’s girls tennis team swept its opening match of the high school season as it defeated Plainfield 5-0 on Wednesday.
AMEY TAKES AIM: Loss of Coach Bennett leaves hole in Marshall
My email box is a little less busy now, and there’ll be a familiar face missing on basketball trips to Marshall in the future.
Roncalli fights past North Central in extra innings on way to Braves Bash title
Roncalli became a three-time Gold Bracket champion of the sixth annual Braves Bash high school softball tournament at Terre Haute’s Miss Softball America complex Saturday night by defeating Evansville Mater Dei 7-1 in the title game.
The 12-team round-robin tournament, which started Friday evening with three pools, and concluded with bracket championships Saturday night.
Sullivan enjoys record golf day at Northview Invitational
Sullivan and No. 1 player Nathan Pirtle were top finishers in the Northview Invitational for high school boys golf teams played Saturday at Forest Park.
TH North loses to McCutcheon, beats Harrison (West Lafayette)
Terre Haute North bounced back from a big loss to host McCutcheon to defeat Harrison (West Lafayette) in a pair of high school baseball games Saturday.
The Mavericks defeated the Patriots 17-7 early Saturday, but North beat the Raiders 9-4 later in the day.
West Vigo baseball drops first two in Center Grove Classic
West Vigo hammered the baseball all over the field and had a double-digit lead through three innings early in the week at Seeger before rain washed it out short of a complete game.
TH South sweeps MIC baseball doubleheader
Justin Jenkins and Timmy Herrin led visiting Terre Haute South to a sweep of a Metropolitan Interscholastic Conference high school baseball doubleheader Saturday at Indianapolis North Central.
Opening their final MIC season, the Braves won the opener 9-6 and the nightcap 8-6.
Braves Softball Bash a 'premier' early-season tournament
The Braves Softball Bash has grown to 12 schools in 2014, with high school teams looking to gauge their early-season progress against quality competition.
The host Braves have put together a solid 3-1 start that includes a doubleheader sweep of Casey, Ill., a newcomer to the field along with West Vigo.
Golf season gets going Saturday with Northview Invitational
Most high school boys golf teams in the area will get the season started Saturday in the Northview Invitational at Forest Park.
New players will be in the lineups for many of the teams. Sullivan and Greencastle are the leaders in returning players.
PREP ROUNDUP: Allen homers in North softball win
Jazmine Allen had her first home run of the season and she and Conner Nelson combined for five hits and four RBIs as Terre Haute North defeated Sullivan 8-1 on Thursday in nonconference high school softball.
PREP ROUNDUP: South offense leads Braves to dominant win over Lincoln
Justin Jenkins had three hits and Jacob Johnson and Zach Donnelly drove in four runs apiece as Terre Haute South rolled to a 15-2 high school baseball victory Wednesday at Vincennes Lincoln.
Terre Haute North tops Sullivan, falls to Class A No. 1 Shakamak
Class A No. 1-ranked Shakamak got a big pitching performance and big hits from Braxton and Brett Yeryar Tuesday night while beating Terre Haute North 5-2 at Don Jennings Field.
Prep roundup: West Vigo softball wins in 4 1/2 innings
Charity Lane, Shelby Edington, Baylee Waters and Leah Morrison each had two hits and Lane knocked in three runs to lead West Vigo past visiting Turkey Run 13-2 in a run-rule high school softball game that went 4 1/2 innings Tuesday.
Terre Haute South cruises to Braves Bash title
Terre Haute South knew it had a deep pitching staff going into the 11th annual Braves Bash baseball tournament and that proved to be true. But the Braves’ offense surprised everyone but the players Saturday as South won two 10-run-rule games en route to the championship.
South defeated Mount Vernon 10-0 Saturday morning and capped the championship with a 14-4, come-from-behind victory over Munster in the finale.
PREP ROUNDUP: Collett homers as North splits doubleheader
Sophomore T.J. Collett hit a solo home run in the top of the seventh inning in the first game of a doubleheader as Terre Haute North opened its high school baseball season with a 9-3 victory over host Hamilton Southeastern on Saturday.
The Patriots lost the nightcap 6-0 after three first-inning errors led to three unearned runs.
Metro sports: Locks of Love tournament today at Memorial Stadium
The Indiana State Women’s Soccer team will host its annual Locks of Love tournament today. The 4th annual event will begin at 9 a.m. at Memorial Stadium.
PREP TRACK PREVIEW: Raetz, Holman among new coaches
Two new coaches are in charge among the eight Vigo County and Northview high school track teams in 2014, although one of them isn’t really that new.
Mark Raetz has taken over the Northview boys for Chad Smith, who is battling an illness. Raetz formerly headed the Terre Haute South boys program for two seasons.
Metro sports: ISU blanks Austin Peay in 6-plus innings
Indiana State’s baseball team posted another mid-week victory Wednesday night as four pitchers combined to throw a three-hit shutout and lead a 3-0 victory over Austin Peay State at Bob Warn Field.
Season preview: Vigo County, Northview baseball teams ready to roll
To no one’s surprise, Wabash Valley baseball fans don’t have to leave Vigo County — although they certainly could, as described later in this article — to find talented baseball players on the high school diamond this spring.
Terre Haute North has a quartet of .300 hitters returning — Zach Milam, Jonathan Eilbracht, Nathan Will and Lane Dransfield — in addition to super sophomore T.J. Collett, who led the Patriots with a team-best 50 runs batted in for the 24-7 Patriots last season. Collett hit .424 with six doubles, two triples and nine home runs as a freshman.
PREP ROUNDUP: Marlow's 10 RBI leads Braves' softball at Casey
Terre Haute South’s Kelsey Marlow had 10 runs-batted-in during a doubleheader sweep at Casey.
Metro sports: ISU’s Stone, Riemenschneider honored by MVC
Indiana State junior Megan Stone and freshman Brooke Riemenschneider each earned Missouri Valley Conference Athlete of the Week honors, according to an announcement from the league office Monday.
- More High School Headlines
- Terre Haute track and field athletes shine at Patriot Invitational