Grey Ghost defense pressures Bulldogs’ offensive attacks

Drew Veskauf TimesNewspapers
IVC senior Jake Lauber goes in for the sack on Mahomet-Seymour quarterback Tom Kenney. The IVC defense pressured the M-S defense for 40-straight minutes of game time, giving up no points until the last seven minutes of the game.

A 20-0 defeat to Corn Belt Conference foe Mahomet-Seymour (4-1, 4-0) Friday for the IVC varsity football team was neck and neck until 10 minutes left in the game.

“I told these guys I’m very proud. It was 20-nothing but they didn’t score until the last minutes,” coach Tim Heinz said. “I’m happy with our kids. We have to get better with certain things from a few mistakes here and there, but I’m ecstatic. They played hard. That’s how we always played here.”

The Grey Ghost defense took a stand to the visiting Bulldogs to force four turnovers and three punts, but the M-S defense was equally impressive by forcing IVC one turnover and seven punts.

“Our defense is good. We just have to get some more offense. We moved the ball a little better than we have the last couple weeks,” Heinz said.

Opening the action, IVC (1-4, 1-3) received the kickoff but an interception thrown by senior quarterback Noah Gould cut IVC’s first offensive push short.

The Bulldogs offense was stopped on IVC’s 5-yard line and a 22-yard field goal went wide right to give the Grey Ghosts possession.

IVC had a 10-play drive for 46 yards before being forced to punt. Gould pulled the passing game together and threw for 29 yards on the drive. Senior Andrew McMorrow, junior Luke Patty and senior Kyle Cox were all on the receiving end.

IVC junior kicker Jack Ressler had an extended punt to put the Bulldogs on their own 10-yard line.

The Grey Ghost defense were attacking aggressively and gave up just 18 yards. Patty deflected an M-S pass on three-and-11 to force the punt. A Bulldog false start moved the ball back farther and senior Riley Beard received to get the ball on the M-S 41.

IVC was halted again on its drive and punted with two minutes left in the first.

M-S carried the ball into the second quarter and a pass on four-and-goal on IVC’s 3-yard line was deflected by McMorrow for the turnover.

In their own red zone, the Grey Ghosts couldn’t get past their own ten and had to punt. M-S received on IVC’s 36 to start its offensive drive. It was cut short when senior Trey Batey had a sack for a 12-yard loss and sophomore Alec Buob deflected a third-down pass attempt to force the punt.

After the half-time break, M-S received but the tough Grey Ghost defense forced another turnover on their own 35. The Bulldogs countered and Ressler was back on the field for the punt.

IVC entered the fourth with possession at four-and-1. A false start moved the ball back and the special teams was back on the field.

Ressler was in the back field but the snap went back and Patty received for the fake punt. The play was stopped short when M-S senior Andrew 

Franklin took Patty down behind the line of scrimmage.

M-S took possession but after five plays Batey had another quarterback sack and a Bulldog holding call brought the ball back to two-and-27. 

The Bulldogs brought it to four-and-16 when M-S senior quarterback Joe Kenney stepped back in the pocket, avoided a blitz and threw a bullet to junior Tom Kenney in the endzone for a 31-yard reception to put the first points on the board.

The momentum followed and the Bulldogs scored just three minutes later with another pass from Joe Kenney to Tom Kenney.

With two minutes on the clock, the Bulldogs scored again off a 51-yard reception from Joe Kenney to Tom Kenney for the third time.

On the extra point, Batey broke through the line of scrimmage and reached his arms in the air to block the extra point.

During the last possession from IVC, Gould threw for 18 yards to get on the Bulldogs 11-yard line. A pass attempt to senior Andy Culbertson in the endzone was intercepted with seconds on the clock to end the game.

Gould went 12-17 on passing to finish the game with 75 yards.

“(Gould) improved,” Heinz said. “I thought he played a pretty good ball game.”

The Grey Ghosts will travel to Bloomington Central Catholic (3-2, 3-1) Friday for week six of league play.

“That’ll be a tough one next week, but they’re all tough for us right now. You just got to keep improving,” Heinz said.