NORTHWOOD 35, JIMTOWN 21
The Panthers used a 14-point second quarter to get some breathing room in an eventual 35-21 season-opening victory over visiting Jimtown Friday night.
NorthWood — ranked fifth in the Class 4A IFCA preseason polls and sixth in the AP’s preseason ratings — was tied with its guests, 14-14, after one period, but a pair of Jaden Miller keepers during a 14-0 second stanza pushed the Black Crunch out to a 28-14 halftime advantage. Miller finished with 79 rushing yards on 13 carries, including his two second-quarter TDs from 10 and 8 yards out. Nate Newcomer piled up 118 yards on 22 carries with a 2-yard TD plunge in the opening period and completed 4-of-8 passes for 51 yards and a touchdown completion to Joe Newcomer from 17 yards out in the second quarter.
Veshon Malone rushed for 52 yards, and Ben Mestach collected 33 rushing yards and a touchdown in a deep run attack by the Panthers.
Jimtown took an initial advantage on a 64-yard touchdown strike from Clay Campbell to Johntu Reed at the 10:49 stop of the first period before the Newcomers hooked up on Nate’s TD pass at the 7:40 mark of the clock to even it up. The Jimmies knotted it back up at 14-14 via Campbell’s 1-yard carry into the end zone with 1:14 to go in the opening period.
Miller capped off a nine-play, 80-yard scoring drive with a 10-yard scoring run at the 3:07 stop of the second period, and he scored again from 8 yards out with 1:19 left in the half to finish off a four-play, 42-yard scoring drive.
Mestach’s 5-yard run at the 8:30 mark of the third period put NorthWood up 35-14 with Jerson Sanchez’s fifth successful PAT of the night, and Jimtown scored once more with 10 seconds on the game clock on Campbell’s 13-yard touchdown completion to Dustin Whitman to complete the scoring.
Campbell completed 10-of-19 passes for 161 yards and two TDs, Reed hauled in five passes for 100 yards, and Whitman caught three passes for 45 yards. Thompson led Jimtown’s rushing game with 78 yards on 11 carries, but NorthWood out-gained the Jimmies 280-125 yards on the ground. Wood was whistled for five penalties and 61 penalty yards in the win.
NorthWood opens at 1-0 and will play host to Class 3A, No. 2-ranked Bishop Chatard next Friday.
TRITON 26, SOUTH CENTRAL UNION MILLS 24
Triton nearly let a 26-point advantage slip away, but the Trojans did enough to get the win in head coach Rodney Younis’ return to the helm of the program Friday night.
D’Angelo Shumpert’s long run in the first set up a Connor Pitney touchdown completion to Nate Amsden, and Porsha Udongo ran in a two-point conversion to stake the home team to an initial, 8-0 lead in Bourbon. Pitney connected with Lucas Cabrera at the 7:30 mark of the second period to push the Trojans out to a 14-0 halftime advantage. Koby Mast took it the house for six more at the 9:30 stop of the third period and scored again at the 4:41 mark of the quarter on Pitney’s second TD pass of the night.
South Central scored three touchdowns and two two-point conversions in the fourth quarter, but it was too little, too late.
Complete stats were not available for the game. The Trojans open their Hoosier North Athletic Conference slate at rival LaVille next Friday at 7 p.m.
CULVER ACADEMY 24, TIPPECANOE VALLEY 12
Valley had Culver Academy on upset alert as late as the fourth quarter Friday night, but couldn’t sound the alarm in the land that Steinbrenner financed.
Valley had sliced a 17-0 deficit to 17-12 after Domingo Santiago hit a 27-yard field goal, but a third-down conversion from Ryan Tompos to Ty English went for 45 yards and a score to end the rally.
The Academy broke a scoreless tie in the second quarter with 17 straight points, starting with a 35-yard field goal from Brady Braun. Tompos then scored from two yards out, and just before half, the Eagles blocked a Valley punt and covered it for a score.
Jace Potter got Valley on the board with a 17-yard run to open the third, and Valley used its defense to score when Wade Melanson recorded a safety. The Santiago field goal had Valley within five points as the fourth quarter started.
Valley, which hasn’t won a season opener since 2010, was held to just a shade over 100 yards of total offense, but the Academy didn’t do itself any favors by committing 15 penalties for 143 yards.
“We did some things at halftime and made some adjustments to the offensive line, and we came out and just showed up,” said Valley head coach Steve Moriarty. “It would have been so easy for those kids to be like, you know what I’m tired and I’m gassed. I’m going to take it off. But they came out and fought and we beat them 9-0 in the third quarter. I was so proud of them. Their effort tonight, I couldn’t be more proud. I know the scoreboard says 24-12, but man, those kids showed heart tonight. Very, very proud of them.”
Valley (0-1) opens its home dates against Northfield next Friday while the Academy (1-0) travels to Lafayette Harrison.