NEW MARKET — Southmont made the second half adjustments they wanted to, and the 29 points the scored turned into a 36-8 win over Crawfordsville.
The win moves the Mounties to 3-2 on the season and 2-1 in the Sagamore Conference with the win, while the Athenians remain winless in five games overall and three in the conference.
With only a 7-0 lead on the halftime scoreboard, South had a re-focus session at intermission.
“We were sloppy in the first half,” Mounties coach Desson Hannum said. “We didn’t have a lot of great energy. Some of that is because it was Homecoming. We were a little distracted, so I told the guys we needed to focus on the task at hand. Give a lot of credit to Crawfordsville. They came ready to play were really physical, but our effort wasn’t good enough. We saw that effort in the second half.”
South got touchdowns on their first two possessions of the third quarter, then put two more scores up in the fourth, to notch the win and pick up two points in the County Chase.
The Athenians, with their best defensive half of the season in the first half, gave up the two quick third-quarter scores and had to play come from behind ball.
“The kids played really well, really hard, in that first half,” Crawfordsville coach Kurt Schlicher said. “They came ready to play, but give Southmont credit; they made some adjustments and came up with some big plays. In the end, we made too many mistakes to win a football game.”
South’s first drive of the game covered most of the field and 15 plays, but ended with an Andrew Martin interception on fourth down.
The Mounties scored on their second drive on a Cameron Giles 1-yard run, but turned the ball over on downs their last two possessions.
“We got some key stops in that half,” Schlicher noted. “We were very, very encouraged. We made it difficult for South to get some things done. We were excited at halftime.”
Crawfordsville couldn’t take advantage with some points, however, as South’s defense allowed nothing.
“Our defense had a good game,” Hannum said. “We got some stops and like every game this season, our defense has kept us in it. We had some negative plays that were key for us, and gave Crawfordsville some problems with second and third and long.”
The Athenians could muster only five yards of net offense in that first half, while the Mounties had 161, but it was the 7-0 score that had a large crowd on both side of the field talking.
South took the second half kickoff and went 74 yards in five plays, with Giles scoring on another 1-yard run.
The Mounties defense gave the ball back to the offense four plays later when Evan Lowe picked off C’ville quarterback Kaiden Underwood. Four plays later, Giles scored his third 1-yard TD of the game and it was quickly 22-0.
“We weren’t getting off the ball, even with knowing the snap count,” Hannum said. “We knew that if we would get off the line of scrimmage faster and better, we would get the offense moving better. Our line really had a good second half. We got some big plays, which then let us start going up-tempo with the offense.”
After a couple of swapped possessions, the Mounties scored on their next two drives, both in the fourth quarter. Dillan Lauy found the end zone both times, on runs of 13 and 14 yards. Overall, South would run the ball for 196 yards in the second half to finish with 306 for the game.
“Southmont is a tough and well-coached team,” Schlicher said. “They have a lot of versatility and we knew it would be difficult to shut them down all night. Their run game is their bread and butter, and they created some big plays.”
Lauy would finish with 78 yards on the ground, and Giles had 81. Jake Whitecotton had 76.
The leading rusher for South was Ty Welliever with 93 yards.
“Dillan (Lauy) ran well, and Ty ran really well,” Hannum said of the senior. “He (Welliever) really had a good night on the other side playing defense too.”
Giles finished with 90 yards passing on a 5-of-10 night, giving the Mounties 396 yards of offense. Lowe had two catches for 77 yards.
Crawfordsville finished with 149 total yards. Noah Allen ran for 24 yards and Kaigen Fields had 13. Junior running back Jack Pendleton got one carry late in the game and made it count, going 79 yards for the Athenians only score of the game.
Underwood was 4-of-6 passing for 31 yards, as the visitors used the freshman in some spots running the offense.
“It allows us to use Cale McCarty as a running back,” Schlicher said. “Cale is our quarterback, but we wanted to give our freshman some looks under game pressure. We are looking for whatever will give our team a boost, or a chance to win, and Underwood did a good job. Cale is an excellent runner and was excited to help the team in any way possible.”
The road gets tougher for both teams as the grind of the Sagamore Conference continues.
Crawfordsville has homecoming next Friday against North Montgomery, and the Mounties head to Danville.
“There were positives tonight,” Schlicher said. “We know we are trending in the right direction, but we have to keep getting better. The kids were prepared and ready to play this week. We have to keep building on the positives. Our first half defensively was a real positive, and now we have to add to that.”
“I don’t think very many people thought we would even win three games this season,” Hannum said, “and there are a lot of things we have to clean up. We are going to see teams that stretch the field more in the next four weeks, so our defense will have to get even better. We like to run the ball, but that part of our game has to get better also. What I really like is that this group is very capable of making those improvements.”
SOUTHMONT 36 CRAWFORDSVILLE 8
Crawfordsville 0 0 0 8 - 8
Southmont 0 7 15 14 - 36
Team Stats CHS SM
First Downs 6 19
Rushes-yds 27-114 51-306
Comp-Att-Int 5-12-1 5-10-1
Pass yds 35 90
Total yds 149 396
Fumbles-lost 0 2-0
Penalties-yds 13-103 6-49
Punts-avg 5-29.4 1-29
CHS: Pendleton 1-79, Allen 10-24, Fields 3-13, McCarty 8-4, Underwood 3-1, C.Scott 1(-7); SM Welliever 15-93, Giles 24-81, Lauy 4-78, Whitecotton 7-76, N.Scott 1(-1).
CHS: McCarty 1-6-4, Underwood 4-6-31: SM Giles 5-10-90.
CHS: C.Scott 3-27, Martin 1-4, McCarty 1-4; SM Lowe 3-83, Whitecotton 1-5, Lauy 1-2.