TERRE HAUTE —
Terre Haute North was all systems go Friday night at Carl S. Riddle Stadium.
The Patriots’ defense flew around to limit Bloomington North to zero first downs on the Cougars’ 15-play possession. North’s Austin Massey and Braxton Poore made nice plays for interceptions while Wyatt Stoelting delivered a big hit on a tackle-for-loss.
Coach Chris Barrett’s offense built off that momentum, with senior running back Ricky Brookins leading the way.
Brookins ran 52 yards to set up a 5-yard touchdown run by quarterback Chris Barrett II just two plays into the 15-play series.
Brookins’ next touch was for paydirt, scoring from 40 yards out thanks to a couple nice cutback moves behind a powerful, mobile offensive line.
“He’s been ready to go for weeks,” quarterback Barrett said of Brookins. “We all have been. It was nice to finally get out here and hit someone else and we’re looking sharp.”
The 180-pound Brookins showed off his quickness and finished with 155 yards on 11 carries while senior Kai Stratten added a nice power running style the mix.
Stratten ran four times for 53 yards and a touchdown.
“We executed very well for this time of year,” coach Barrett said. “Our offensive line did a good job, our backs did a good job of finding the holes and accelerating, and our perimeter blocked pretty well. The few times we passed, we executed in that game as well.”
Barrett was sharp completing 7-of-8 passes on the evening, with the highlight being a 35-yard strike to Nate Carson down the left sideline. Barrett also connected for touchdown passes to senior Jordan Moothery and to Brookins, who made an extra effort to get into the end zone with a spin move down the sideline.
Terre Haute North’s varsity offense racked up well over 300 yards from scrimmage in 37 plays, while scoring 11 touchdowns.
“It was a good start,” the senior quarterback said. “We just want to build off that when it counts for real. We just want to keep getting better.”
The North defense was solid, aside from the Cougars scoring four times in 10 attempts when lining up at the Patriots’ 10-yard line.
North opens its season at Lucas Oil Stadium against Castle on Friday night at 8:30 p.m.
“They’ve gotten us for two years now. We’re just ready go in Lucas Oil, big stage,” Barrett II said.
Coach Barrett was ready to get to work dissecting the film so his team could learn from its mistakes and strong points.
“I told our guys it’s never as bad as you think it is, and it’s never as good as you think it is. We’ll watch that film tomorrow, they’ll be a lot of coaching going on and we’ll be better because of that,” Barrett said. “Bloomington North, they’re well-coached, they do a great job. We were just ready to go, and we had a good scrimmage.”