For the second year in a row, the North Daviess football team
reached a sectional championship game, and for the second year in a
row they fell to Linton.
The Class A No. 1 Miners (12-0) defeated the Cougars (5-7) 48-6 at Roy
Williams Field to win the sectional 40 championship. The win was the
ninth in the last 11 meetings, including last year’s 61-8 defeat of
the Cougars in the sectional championship game, also at Linton.
The Cougars won the opening coin toss, and deferred to the high
powered Linton offense in hopes of getting the ball to start the
second half, but it turned out it didn’t matter. After a 45-yard pass
from quarterback Austin Karazsia to Zane Haden set the Miner offense
up at the Cougars 12-yard line, the Miners were on the verge of a
quick scoring drive. The North Daviess defense stood tall, forcing the
Miners offense to turn the ball over on downs after at Karazsia
incomplete pass on fourth down and seven from the Cougars eight-yard
The Miners defense forced a punt on the first North Daviess
possession, after an 18-yard return by Koye Kaiser the Miners offense
had the ball at the Cougars 32-yard-line. Five plays later, all runs,
Austin Hale scored a one-yard touchdown run to put Linton up 7-0.
The North Daviess offense once again was forced to punt as Linton took
over at their own 27, but a block in the back pushed the possession
back to the 11-yard line. The Miners took the ball 89 yards in nine
plays capped by an 18-yard touchdown from Karazsia to Cole Bradbury
increasing the lead to 14-0 with just over 10 minutes to play before
The next North Daviess drive had a promising start as junior running
back Colton Lengacher ran for 31 yards on the first play, putting the
Cougars into Linton territory at the 37-yard line. Two more Lengacher
runs and a late hit penalty on Linton, and the Cougars had a first and
ten at the Linton 20. On a third and seven at the 17, Helms pitched to
Lengacher, but the North Daviess leading rusher fumbled, finally
recovering the ball at the 21 for a four-yard loss. On fourth down,
the Cougars were forced to put the ball in the air, and Helms was
sacked for a loss of 13 yards ending the Cougars best drive of the
The Miners capitalized on the turnover by traveling 66 yards in nine
plays with Karazsia extending the lead to 21-0 on a one-yard sneak for
the touchdown. North Daviess started their next possession just short
of midfield, and methodically moved the ball down the field on the
ground. Set up at the Linton 33, and time slipping away inside the
final minute before halftime the Cougars were forced to pass. Helms
had Zach Baker open in the endzone, but Kaiser recovered and
intercepted the ball in the end zone.
Despite the ball being at their own 20, and the game clock showing
less than 60 seconds, the Miner offense wasn’t content with its
three-touchdown lead. Karazsia found Bradbury for a 15-yard pass, and
then Linton decided it was time for some trickery. On the next play,
Karazsia found Grant Stamm for a 25-yard gain to the Cougars 40, Stahm
then lateraled the ball back to Bradbury, who ran 45 yards for a
touchdown giving the Miners a 28-0 lead at halftime. The Miners
outgained the Cougars 285-74 in the first half.
The Cougars received the ball to start the second half, but they
couldn’t get anything going offensively. Meanwhile, the Miners ran one
play on each of their first two drives of the third quarter. Kaiser
ran for a 65-yard touchdown, and then Karazsia found Dane Rupska for a
65-yard touchdown pass extending the lead to 40-0. Karazsia added
another touchdown through the air to give Linton a 48-0 lead at the
end of the third quarter. The Cougars finally got on the board with a
Lengacher touchdown run with 2:12 to play in regulation for the final
margin of 48-6.
Linton will face the winner of the West Washington and Milan sectional
39 championship next Friday.
For the second year in a row, the North Daviess football team
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