TERRE HAUTE —
West Vigo took command of its homecoming game early, showing its myriad of speedy weapons in the backfield Friday night against Edgewood.
The game was delayed 50 seconds into the second half due to lightning. Action will resume at 2 p.m. today with 11 minutes, 10 seconds left in the third quarter.
The Vikings took a 20-0 lead at halftime, however, in a big part thanks to quarterback Jimmy Maples and a dominant defensive line.
The Vikings’ defense, led by 6-foot-2, 240-pound Jacob Riley and Sam McClain, held Edgewood to 82 total yards and three first downs in the first half.
That stingy defense helped put the ball in the hands of Maples, who directed the offense on three first-half scoring drives.
The junior quarterback delivered the big plays twice, hitting Chris Neidlinger on a slant pattern from 12 yards out. Neidlinger hauled in the pass near the five-yard line and broke an Edgewood tackle to make it 7-0 just five minutes into the game.
“Edgewood was really focused on stopping the run so we had to come out and establish the pass,” coach Jeff Cobb said. “The first score was a nice little slant. They were putting eight in the box, manning up on the outside. Jimmy put a nice pass to Chris Neidlinger, who made a nice grab on a ball that was behind him a little bit.”
West Vigo running back Danny Creasey, coming off a 160-yard rushing performance, broke through two Edgewood tacklers to score from 30 yards out early in the second quarter.
Creasey had 90 yards rushing in the first half, also busting a 19-yard run.
Later in the second quarter, McClain tackled Edgewood running back Zack Harrison for a loss of five yards, forcing the Mustangs into a 4th-and-19 situation on the Vikings’ 19-yard line. West Vigo forced an incompletion on fourth down, ending the Mustangs’ best opportunity through Friday’s first half. Coach Jerry Bland’s team was plagued by 35 yards of penalties on the offensive side of the ball.
With the ball back, Maples and the Vikings’ offense went to work again. Skyler Warnock took a pass in the flats and found open space for a 19-yard gain, but the Edgewood defense stiffened.
But on 3rd-and-8 on the Mustangs’ 37-yard line, Maples dropped back and launched a ball 30 yards to wide receiver Tyler Gustafson, who trotted into the end zone. Freshman Hunter Voils missed his first extra-point attempt and the Vikings took a 20-0 lead into halftime.
“That was just picture perfect,” Cobb said. “Jimmy laid the ball right in there on a fade route.”
Rain began to fall at Jay Barrett field at the break and the game was delayed after lightning was sighted just after the third quarter began.
West Vigo (3-2, 2-0 WIC) is looking to keep pace with Sullivan as the only two unbeaten teams in the Western Indiana Conference.