FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WANE) – Four local teams brought home a regional title on Friday night headlined by 5A no. 1 Snider’s dominating 31-7 win over sixth-ranked Mishawaka at Spuller Stadium.
Defending 5A champs Snider overcame a slow start to beat Mishawaka 31-7 to win the regional crown for the second year in a row. Mac Hippenhammer had 124 total yards which included an 85-yard punt return for a touchdown just before half. Money Woods rushed for 119 yards and had one score for Snider. The top-ranked Panthers will play at Westfield for semi-state. The Shamrocks defeated Kokomo 45-7 in the regional championship.
In 4A it was 4A no. 4 New Haven falling for the first time this season as the Bulldogs were bested by 4A no. 2 NorthWood 52-28. Brayton Yoder’s 32-yard TD gave NorthWood an 8-0 lead in the first quarter, but New Haven answered with a five-yard score from Nishawn Jones to make it an 8-7 ballgame. Bronson Yoder would score on a 7-yard run to give NorthWood a 16-7 lead and the end of the first quarter. New Haven’s passing attack found its stride in the game’s second frame with Keshawn Moore hitting Whitney Harris for two touchdowns (39 and 26 yards) to give the Bulldogs a 20-16 lead. However, Trey Bilinksi’s five-yard touchdown pass would give the Panthers a 22-20 lead the half – the beginning of a 36-to-8 run for NorthWood that put the game away. Jones finished with 12 carries for 87 yards and a touchdown while Moore finished 15-for-26 for 187 yards and three touchdowns. New Haven finishes the season with an overall record of 11-1.
6A no. 11 Homestead saw its season come to an end against 6A no. 7 Carmel in the form of a 42-7 loss at Dave S. Walters Stadium. Jerome Halsell’s two-yard score gave Carmel a 7-0 lead in the first quarter while an 18-yard scramble from quarterback Jake McDonald in the second quarter make it a 14-0 Greyhounds lead at half. A costly Homestead fumble would set Carmel up with good field position early in the third quarter and McDonald found Ethan Merriweather for a score to make it 21-0. Homestead would get on the board at 6:44 in the third quarter when Grant Raber found the endzone on a 15-yard run to cut Carmel’s lead to 21-7 – but that would be Homestead’s only score of the night. Jordan Presley finished with 12 carries for 75 yards to pace the Homestead offense. The Spartans end the season with a 9-3 overall record.
3A no. 7 Concordia earned the program’s third-ever regional championship with an impressive 62-27 win over 3A no. 4 West Lafayette at Zollner Stadium. This game was an offensive coordinator’s dream early on, as Concordia led 21-14 after the first quarter thanks to a 31-yard touchdown pass from Peter Morrison to Tysen Chambers and two rushing touchdowns from Peterson Kerlegrand. After West Lafayette cut it to 21-20 early in the second quarter Morrison connected with Colton Grahovac and Mark Mallers on touchdowns in a span of 2:25 to give the Cadets a 34-20 lead. With 2:50 before half Grahovac found Mallers for a 25-yard touchdown on a wide receiver pass, building Concordia’s lead to 41-20 at the break. Kerlegrand added three rushing touchdowns in the second half to end with five touchdowns and 216 rushing yards for the game. Morrison was 18-for-24 for 343 yards and three touchdowns while Grahovac finished with seven catches for 175 yards and a score. Concordia will travel to Garrett next Friday for semistate.
The 3A no. 17 Railroaders went on the road to upset 3A no. 2 Mishawaka Marian 31-28 thanks to a late field goal. Kianna McDonald lifted a 30-yard field goal through the uprights with 1.6 seconds left to break a 28-all tie and win the game for GHS. The Railroaders trailed early, as Bryce Tomasi hit Evan Sandefur for first quarter score to make it 7-0, but Tanner Burns would hit Ben Purdy for a 56-yard score to tie it up late it up with 2:19 left in the second quarter. However, a little over a minute later Mishawaka Marian found the end zone to take a 14-7 lead into half. At 9:36 in the third frame Burns would hit Purdy on a screen that went for a 20-yard score to knot the game at 14. The Railroaders then gambled and won, recovering an onside kick that led to another Burns-to-Purdy touchdown, giving Garrett a 21-14 lead. After a Mishawaka Marian TD late in the third tied the game at 21, Purdy would haul in a 26-yard touchdown pass from Burns with 10:38 left in the fourth quarter to take a 28-21 lead. Mishawaka would find the end zone on a 16-yard run with 7:21 left in the fourth quarter to tie the game and set the table for McDonald’s heroic kick. Garrett now will host 3A semistate against Concordia next Friday.
After beating 2A no. 1 Woodlan and 2A no. 13 Churubusco South Adams’ magical postseason run came to an end Friday at 2A no. 3 Eastbrook as the Starfires fell 28-21. Joe Stuber’s 21-yard TD run gave the Starfires a 7-0 lead after the first quarter, but Eastbrook’s Andrew Barajas and Justin Singer would each score a rushing touchdown in the second quarter as the Panthers built a 13-7 lead at half. Singer would add a 1-yard TD run with 11:17 left in the fourth quarter to make it 21-7, but the Starfires fought back. Stuber would add a five-yard rushing score while Marcus Teeter hit J.D. Groh for a 65-yard TD to knot the game a 21-all with 8:22 remaining. However, Blayne Altum’s 64-yard rushing touchdown with 6:21 remaining gave proved to be the game’s winning score, as the Panthers held on for a 28-21 win. South Adams ends the season with an 8-5 overall record.
1A no. 6 Adams Central is heading to semistate as the Flying Jets bested Southwood 23-7 at Sherman Waggner Field on Friday night. Adams Central’s Drew Schultz capped off a 16-play drive with a 2-yard TD in the first quarter to give Adams Central a 7-0 lead, but Southwood’s Carson Blair would hit Blake Martz for a 2-yard strike to make it a 7-7 game after the first quarter. Adams Central would tally a safety in the second quarter to lead 9-7 at half. Schultz pounded home two one-yard touchodwns in the fourth to seal the game, winding up with 30 carries for 125 yards and three scores. Andrew Hammond rushed 21 times for 72 yards for the Jets. Adams Central advances to host 1A no. 2 Pioneer next Friday.