Indiana Football Digest Top Games - 2019 Regional Finals

2019_1108_FantennialFridayNight_0062

WARSAW (9-2) AT MERRILLVILLE (10-1)

KICKOFF: 6:30 p.m. CST, Demaree Stadium.

COACHES: Bart Curtis, 16-5 in second season at Warsaw, 217-107 in 29th season overall. Brad Seiss, 30-25 in fifth season at Merrillville, 43-42 in eighth season overall.

PREVIOUS MEETING: FIRST MEETING.

LAST CONTEST: Warsaw beat Penn, 35-18, Merrillville beat Crown Point 10-9

UP NEXT: Warsaw hosts Homestead or travels to Carmel. Merrillville travels to either Carmel or Homestead

TOP PERFORMERS: Warsaw’s Juan Jaramillo, Blake Marsh, and Wyatt Amiss combined to run for 417 yards on 56 carries and scored five touchdowns in the win over Penn. Peter Rodriguez ran for 78 yards on 20 carries and was 4-of-6 for 64 yards passing in the Pirates win over Crown Point.

CHALK TALK: “The Pirates are well coached by Brad Seiss and his staff. They are fast and physical on the defensive side of the ball and they are a big play team on offense. They are an extremely talented team that is playing with a ton of confidence. This is a team that you absolutely cannot give extra possessions to with turnovers and miscues.” – Warsaw’s Bart Curtis

“Playing regional football every team is good and that is the case with Warsaw. They present a lot of problems with their physical play and ball control with their option attack. They are well coached in all 3 phases of the game and are really playing well and have a lot of momentum beating Chesterton and Penn in the tournament. We have to match their physicality, cash in offensively on our limited opportunities with their ball control, and make impact plays in the special teams. We’re looking forward to playing a home for a regional title against a good football team.” – Merrillville’s Brad Seiss.

SOUTH REGIONAL

CENTER GROVE (6-5) AT WARREN CENTRAL (8-3)

KICKOFF: 7 p.m. EST, Warren Stadium.

COACHES: Eric Moore, 194-71 in 21st year at Center Grove, 242-76 in 25th year overall. Jayson West, 67-19 in 7th year at Warren Central, 119-31 in 12th year overall.

PREVIOUS MEETING: Warren Central, 21-14, Aug. 23, 2019.

LAST CONTEST: Center Grove defeated Franklin Central, 49-14. Warren Central defeated Lawrence North, 34-7.

UP NEXT: Center Grover entertains Zionsville or Ben Davis. Warren Central plays at Ben Davis or hosts Zionsville

TOP PERFORMERS: Center Grove’s Brandon Wheat and Daniel Weems combined to run the ball 20 times, for 240 yards and five touchdowns in the win over Franklin Central. Randy Wells Jr., rushed 18 times for 208 yards and three touchdowns as Warren Central defeated Lawrence North.

CHALK TALK:

“The Warren Central vs CG playoff football game has become one of the premier games in the entire tourney. Almost every year these two programs meet for what seems to be the precursor of the state championship! The WC vs CG playoff game has had some of the states best football players participate and for at least 6 times has produced the state champion. The contest will be the second time this season that CG will be the visitor at WC, and there may be no harder place for the Trojans to win. In 2015 CG the game was played at WC and the Trojans went on to become the first 6A undefeated state champ. This has been a tough year for the Trojans. A young defense struggled in the first 5 games and the Trojans lost their Max Prep All American running back, Carson Steele to injury, lost an additional RB to injury and the 3rd starter of 3 transferred to Indian Creek after 1 game. Thus, causing the Trojans to start 0-3. But things at CG are a changing. The young defense has grown up and become so much better, led by Sophmore Caden Curry and Junior Defensive lineman Austin Booker. The offense reloaded and because of depth issues the sophomore running backs have become real weapons to be dealt with. Feature back Dan Weems has rushed for nearly 1200 yards vs the toughest schedule in 6A. A new toy has become wing back Brandon Wheat who’s speed is one of the fastest players in the state, has really benefited the Trojans. With all that this is my most improved CG football team in 21 years. Plus there is a chance, we might see the return of ALL State RB Carson Steele. If so we are wishing for a break out game vs the Warriors. Moving the chains and keeping the WC offense sidelined is the number 1 priority tonight. It will be critical that the Trojans make the Warriors drive the ball long distances for scores, because if the Warriors create big plays vs the Trojan defense it’s game over. CG doesn’t want a track meet style game. The Trojan offense could help its defense by providing a big play or two but mostly scoring tds not field goals if they get in the red zone. As always in high school the turnover will be the knife in the back! CG must be sound and hope the WC offense coughs up some TO’s for the Trojan Defense.” – Center Grove’s Eric Moore

“Should be a very physical game that’s will come down to momentum and big plays. We cannot let them control the ball and wear us down” – Warren Central’s Jayson West.

CLASS 5A NORTH REGIONAL

VALPARAISO (11-0) AT MISHAWAKA (8-3)

KICKOFF: 7:30 p.m. EST, Steele Stadium.

COACHES: Bill Marshall, 21-4 in 2nd year at Valparaiso. Keith Kinder, 20-5 in 2nd year at Mishawaka.

PREVIOUS MEETING: Mishawaka, 29-20, Aug. 24, 2018.

LAST CONTEST: Valparaiso defeated LaPorte, 45-0. Mishawaka defeated Elkhart Central, 42-36.

UP NEXT: Valparaiso entertains Harrison (West Lafayette) or Fort Wayne Bishop Dwenger. Mishawaka goes to Fort Wayne Bishop Dwenger or hosts Harrison (West Lafayette).

TOP PERFORMERS: Tommy Burbee rushed 12 times for 98 yards and a touchdown as Valparaiso defeated LaPorte. Justin Fisher ran the ball 22 times for 156 yards and six scores at the Cavemen outlasted Elkhart Central.

CHALK TALK: “We are looking forward to a physical game that will ultimately be decided in the trenches. We need to win the line of scrimmage on both sides of the ball and make sure we minimize big plays from their run heavy offense. On special teams we need to always be on the lookout for some trickery.” – Valparaiso’s Bill Marshall

“Valpo is undefeated for a reason. They are big and physical up front on both sides of the ball and are very skilled offensively. They are very good on defense and have limited opponents to very few scoring opportunities this year. We will have to play well up front on both sides and take good care of the football when we have it.” – Mishawaka’s Keith Kinder.

SOUTH REGIONAL

INDIANAPOLIS CATHEDRAL (9-2) AT NEW PALESTINE (11-0)

KICKOFF: 7 p.m. EST, Kelso Stadium.

COACHES: Bill Peebles, 15-8 in 2nd year at Cathedral, 89-73 in 15th year overall. . Kyle Ralph, 85-4 in seventh season at New Palestine.

PREVIOUS MEETING: Cathedral, 45-6, Nov. 13, 2009, regional.

LAST CONTEST: Cathedral defeated Decatur Central, 42-12. New Palestine defeated Franklin, 49-14.

UP NEXT: Indianapolis Cathedral hosts Bloomington South or Floyd Central. New Palestine travels to Floyd Central or entertains Bloomington South.

TOP PERFORMERS: Cathedral’s Daylen Hall and Jake Langdon combined for 21 rushes, 271 yards, and three scores as the Fighting Irish defeated Decatur Central. Charlie Spegal rushed for 242 yards on 26 carries, and scored four times as the Dragons defeated Franklin Community.

CHALK TALK: “It should be a great environment in New Pal on Friday. They are en excellent team that is extremely strong and skilled. The keys of the game will be can we slow down their run and can we establish the run. Both teams are very capable in the passing game. The team that is most efficient through the air will have an advantage in tonight's game.” – Cathedral’s Bill Peebles

“This will take our best effort of the season. Cathedral is a very well coached team and a very talented team. Deep playoff games come down to execution and protecting the football, especially as the weather continues to turn. We have to be incredibly strong in those two areas in every phase of the game.” – New Palestine’s Kyle Ralph.

CLASS 4A NORTH REGIONAL

NEW PRAIRIE (11-1) AT HOBART (10-2)

KICKOFF: 7 p.m. CST, The Brickyard.

COACHES: Russ Radtke, 78-19 in eighth season at New Prairie, 368-139 in 43rd season overall. Craig Osika, 17-5 in 2nd year at Hobart.

PREVIOUS MEETING: Hobart, 35-14, Nov. 4, 2016, sectional.

LAST CONTEST: New Prairie defeated Plymouth, 35-27. Hobart defeated Lowell, 20-0.

UP NEXT: New Prairie plays at East Noble or hosts Mississinewa. Hobart travels to either East Noble or Mississinewa.

TOP PERFORMERS: Hobart’s D.J. Lipke rushed 24 times for 132 yards and two scores as the Brickies whitewashed the Red Devils. Chase Ketterer racked up 286 yards and four touchdowns on 46 carries and Seth Rundell had a 60 yard fumble return for a score as the Cougars knocked off Plymouth.

CHALK TALK: “The Cougars are excited to be traveling to the Brickyard this Friday. It will be the first time at least in recent history that we have made the trip. I expect a great game for fans to come out and watch. The Brickies appear to be clicking on all cylinders both offensively and defensively. To come away with a victory, we will need to be at the top of our game also. Hobart’s quarterback does a nice job at hiding who has the football, our defense must stick to their assignments and not getting caught up with the misdirection. Our defensive backs had probably one of their best games last Friday and that needs to continue, not that we expect to see the ball thrown 38 times again but they can burn you on well timed passes. Offensively our line needs to continue to be able to adjust to whatever stunts and blitzes they throw at us. Their linebackers are very good at finding gaps in the line.Our backfield must take what they are giving us and get us into the correct plays. Field position will be very important so special teams will need to be special.”  – New Prairie associate head coach Bill Gumm.

“Just like every game in the playoffs, it has to be your best game of the year. New Prairie runs an offense that is a little unorthodox compared to what we have seen this year. Their size up front is something that we are going to have to contend with. We know that their QB is one of the leading rushers in the state so in order to win we have to slow him down. Defensively they fly around and get guys to the point of attack. It comes down to who makes the fewest mistakes and who is the most physical team.” – Hobart’s Craig Osika.

SOUTH REGIONAL

MOORESVILLE (10-2) AT EVANSVILLE MEMORIAL (10-1)

KICKOFF: 6:30 p.m. CST, Enlow Field.

COACHES: Mike Gillin, 24-13 in third season at Mooresville, 329-130 in 41st season overall. John Hurley, 97-55 in 12th year at Memorial.

LAST CONTEST: Mooresville defeated East Central, 17-14. Evansville Memorial defeated Evansville Central, 38-14.

PREVIOUS MEETING: None

UP NEXT: Mooresville hosts Mount Vernon (Fortville) or Indianapolis Roncalli. Evansville Memorial hosts Mount Vernon (Fortville) or travels to Indianapolis Roncalli.

TOP PERFORMERS: Brock Combs rushed for 136 yards on 11 carries and scored a touchdown on the ground, as well as returning an interception 39 yards for a score. Connor Angler also added a 39 yard punt return for a score as Evansville Memorial defeated Evansville Central. Kalija Perry was 10-for-20 for 139 yards and a score as the Pioneers defeated East Central.

CHALK TALK: “Mooresville is a well coached football team who is playing at a very high level at the right time. Coach Gillin and his staff do a great job preparing for big games. Mooresville is a big physical football team.  We will need to stop the run, protect the football, eliminate penalties and make big plays on both sides of the ball.  It will be a great environment Friday night at Enlow Field for a Regional Championship.” – Evansville Memorial’s John Hurley.

CLASS 3A NORTH REGIONAL

MISHAWAKA MARIAN (11-1) AT KNOX (11-1)

KICKOFF: 6:30 p.m. CST, Community Field.

COACHES: Mike Davidson, 19-6 in 2nd year at Marian. John Hendryx, 42-16 in fifth season at Knox, 217-92 in 27th season overall.

PREVIOUS MEETING: Marian, 31-6, Oct. 26, 2018, sectional.

LAST CONTEST: Marian defeated Jimtown, 14-13. Knox defeated Calumet, 19-12, OT.

UP NEXT: Mishawaka Marian hosts either Fort Wayne Concordia or Indianapolis Chatard. Knox entertains Fort Wayne Concordia or goes to Indianapolis Chatard.

TOP PERFORMERS: Maddix Bogunia rushed for 71 yards on 11 carries and also threw two touchdown passes at the Kinights squeaked by Jimtown. Zachary Rose was 5-of-10 for 109 yards and also ran for two scores, including the winner in overtime as Knox defeated Calumet. 

CHALK TALK: “Marian has one of the best defenses in Indiana. We have to do a great job of trying to get some first downs to keep their offense off the field. One of my biggest concerns is their kicking game, with their D1 punter and kicker they really put you in bad field position and so we really need to try and keep from starting every drive we get inside our 20.” Knox’ John Hendryx.

SOUTH REGIONAL

HERITAGE HILLS (12-0) AT LAWRENCEBURG (11-1)

KICKOFF: Saturday, 6 p.m. EST Neary Field.

COACHES: Todd Wilkerson, 61-26 in 8th year at Heritage Hills. Ryan Knigga, 77-30 in 9th year at Lawrenceburg.

PREVIOUS MEETING: First Meeting.

LAST CONTEST: Heritage Hills defeated Southridge, 27-7. Lawrenceburg defeated Greensburg, 35-14.

UP NEXT: Heritage Hills hosts Vincennes Lincoln or travels to Danville. Lawrenceburg travels to either Vincennes Lincoln or Danville

TOP PERFORMERS: Phoenix Rodgers ran for four scores and 101 yards on 20 carries and Camden Gasser caught six passes for 192 yards and a score as Heritage Hills knocked off Southridge. Adam Burd racked up 159 yards and three touchdowns on 27 carries and Garrett Yoon was 10-of-12 passing for 226 yards and two scores in Lawrenceburg’s win over Greensburg.

CHALK TALK: “Lawrenceburg is an outstanding team and a program with great tradition. We will have to play excellent defense to contain their QB and other offensive weapons. On offense, we need to move the chains and score points when we get into the redzone. We hope to create some momentum with our special teams. It should be an electric atmosphere! Our players, coaches and community are enjoying football in November!” – Heritage Hills’ Todd Wilkerson.

“Heritage Hills is a very good team. They are fast, strong, and do what they do well. Their QB and FB are very good, they are athletic and fast. They have great team speed and their offensive and defensive lines move well. Heritage Hills is very physical and tough. You can’t do what they do and not have hard-nosed kids, it will be a battle here on Saturday!” – Lawrenceburg’s Ryan Knigga.

CLASS 2A NORTH REGIONAL

LEWIS CASS (11-1) AT ANDREAN (9-3)

KICKOFF: 6:30 p.m. CST, Eckert Field.

COACHES: Jeff Phillips, 26-20 in 4th year at Cass, 72-54 in 12th year overall. Chris Skinner, 32-15 in 4th year at Andrean.

PREVIOUS MEETING: Andrean, 67-66, 5OT, Nov. 9, 2012, regional.

LAST CONTEST: Cass defeated LaVille, 56-21. Andrean defeated Rensselaer Central, 44-34.

UP NEXT: Lewis Cass hosts Eastbrook or heads to Eastside. Andrean travels to either Eastside or Eastbrook.

TOP PERFORMERS: Isaac Chambers was 14-of-16 for 217 yards and two scores as the Kings defeated LaVille. Andrean’s Ryan Walsh ran 23 times for 174 yards and three scores and also recovered a pair of fumbles, returning one for a score in the win over Rensselaer Central.

CHALK TALK: “Lewis Cass has a talented, experienced Senior Class. Offensively, they can win in a variety of ways with multiple athletes. It'll be important for us to limit their explosive plays. Defensively, they are physical at the point of attack and pair that up with speed and athleticism in the back end.” – Andrean’s Chris Skinner.

SOUTH REGIONAL

HERITAGE CHRISTIAN (11-1) AT WESTERN BOONE (11-1)

KICKOFF: 7 p.m. EST, Western Boone.

COACHES: Kyle Ray, 27-15 in fourth season at Heritage Christian. Justin Pelley, 64-20 in 7th year at Western Boone.

PREVIOUS MEETING: Western Boone, 24-7, Oct. 20, 2006, sectional.

LAST CONTEST: Heritage Christian defeated Indianapolis Scecina, 27-8. Western Boone defeated South Vermillion, 56-14.

UP NEXT: Heritage Christian hosts Triton Central or travels to Evansville Mater Dei. Western Boone travels to Triton Central or Evansville Mater Dei.

TOP PERFORMERS: Ethan Lowry had 12 tackles, three for a loss, 2.5 sacks, forced and recovered a fumble for a score, and blocked a punt as Heritage Christian defeated Indianapolis Scecina. Spencer Wright was 10-of-11 passing for 157 yards and a score as Western Boone defeated South Vermillion.

CHALK TALK: “We need great effort and execution in all 3 phases against Western Boone. They are a tough, well-coached team who has had great success the last couple years. We are excited for the challenge!” – Heritage Christian’s Kyle Ray

“Heritage Christian is impressive in several areas and I anticipate a good hard fought high school football game. In order to win we will have to control the clock and keep their offense off the field. They have several play makers on both sides of the ball and it will be to our advantage to limit their time with the football. We have to be efficient on offense and score when the opportunity presents itself. We cannot go three and out and must flip the field when we do have to punt. I believe special teams could be the difference in the game. They have a very good kicker and you can tell they spend a lot of time working on their special teams. We look forward to the opportunity to play for a Regional Championship on our home field.” – Western Boone’s Justin Pelley.

CLASS 1A NORTH REGIONAL

SOUTH ADAMS (12-0) AT ADAMS CENTRAL (11-1)

KICKOFF: 7 p.m. EST, Minnich Field.

COACHES: Grant Moser, 35-20 in 5th year at South Adams. Michael Mosser, 91-41 in 11th year at Adams Central.

PREVIOUS MEETING: South Adams, 42-14, Sep. 27, 2019.

LAST CONTEST: South Adams defeated Madison-Grant, 47-20. Adams Central defeated Northfield, 38-28.

UP NEXT: South Adams travels to North Judson or hosts Lafayette Central Catholic. Adams Central travels to North Judson or Lafayette Central Catholic.

TOP PERFORMERS: James Arnold was 11-of-14 passing for 353 yards and seven scores as South Adams defeated Madison-Grant. Blake Heyerly ran 31 times for 174 yards and a score helping the Flying Jets defeat Northfield.

CHALK TALK: “It will be one of the best small school atmospheres in the state. The Regional is on the line as well as playing against our biggest rivals 7 miles down the road.” – South Adams’ Grant Moser.

“Well it’s going to be a tough one. Our kids do believe that if they play well they have a shot at beating them. It is difficult to beat a team twice in a season. South Adams is very good - we know that - so to beat them we have to play our best - we must get to the QB and prevent him from throwing at will - we also must be able to move the ball - drain clock - and score - if we can't we lose.” – Adams Central’s Michael Mosser.

SOUTH REGIONAL

NORTH DECATUR (11-1) AT WEST WASHINGTON (11-1)

KICKOFF: 7 p.m. EST, Sanders Field.

COACHES: Steve Stirn, 36-20 in fifth season at North Decatur, 123-69 in 17th season overall. Phillip Bowsman, 94-51 in 13th year at West Washington.

PREVIOUS MEETING: West Washington, 64-14, Oct. 28, 2016, sectional.

LAST CONTEST: North Decatur defeated Milan, 21-20. West Washington defeated Perry Central, 20-0.

UP NEXT: North Decatur hosts Indianapolis Lutheran or North Vermillion. West Washington plays at Indianapolis Lutheran or North Vermillion

TOP PERFORMERS: Alex Stirn was 14-of-23 passing for 207 yards and two scores and Logan Koehne caught seven passes for 120 yards and a score as North Decatur defeated Milan. Hunter Bowsman was 10-of-15 passing for 154 yards and a score and also rushed nine times for 57 yards and a touchdown in the Senators win over Perry Central.

CHALK TALK: “The keys to this week will be executing on offense and re-finding the running game for the Chargers. Field conditions have played a role in the last two weeks in the Chargers ability to move the ball on the ground and the Chargers need to re-establish their run game. Defensively, the Chargers will need to contend with how to stop an offense similar to their own. The Senators will utilize multiple formations, a relatively balanced run/pass ratio, and multiple targets to try and score on a Charger defense that allows points sparingly at best. Special teams may ultimately decide the outcome of this game.” – North Decatur’s Steve Stirn.

“We are very excited about the opportunity to play for a Regional Championship this Friday night. We have been very blessed and fortunate to have this opportunity. North Decatur is a great team and has had a great season. I believe we are very similar teams. Both teams are sound in all three phases of the game. Friday night will come down to the most physical and disciplined team on the field. I believe this will be a great game for both communities to be a part of.” – West Washington’s Phillip Bowsman.

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