THE 2023 INDIANA FOOTBALL DIGEST’S TOP GAMES – WEEK FIVE

by | Sep 15, 2023 | Football Blogs, Headlines, RRSN News | 0 comments

CARROLL (FLORA) (4-0) AT EASTERN (GREENTOWN) (3-1)

KICKOFF: 7 p.m. EDT, Cogdell Field.

COACHES: Blake Betzner, 24-6 in third season at Carroll. Josh Edwards, 82-86 in 17th season at Eastern, 98-150 in 25th season overall.

LAST CONTEST: Carroll beat Delphi, 39-0. Eastern beat Taylor, 46-0.

PREVIOUS MEETING: Carroll, 42-14, on September 16, 2022.

UP NEXT: Carroll (Flora) entertains Tri-Central. Eastern (Greentown) goes to Clinton Central.

TOP PERFORMERS: Keegan Ellis ran for a score for the No. 3 (Class 1A) Cougars against Delphi. Jayden Eagle raced seven times for 122 yards with three scores for the Comets against Taylor.

COACHES’ CORNER: “Eastern is a very good program with elite athletes. We are going to have to tackle in space and play disciplined defensively. Offensively, we can’t make mistakes and have turnovers. This should be a very competitive game and a lot of fun to be a part of.” – Carroll’s (Flora) Blake Betzner.

“I believe the number one thing that we have to do is match their physicality. Last year, they worked us physically pretty good in a couple of positions. Those kids are all back and are bigger and stronger. We have showed the kids film of what got us beat last year. We had some early blown coverages in our game last year and some first-time starters that didn’t execute at their positions. We felt we were still very much in the game last year only trailing 20-14 with three minutes left in the first Half and getting the ball to start the second half, but Carroll physically beat us up in the second half and pulled away.  We have to be physical this time around.” – Eastern’s (Greentown) Josh Edwards.

CARROLL (FORT WAYNE) (3-1) AT FORT WAYNE SNIDER (4-0)

KICKOFF: 7 p.m. EDT, Spuller Stadium.

COACHES: Doug Dinan, 106-47 in 14th season at Carroll. Kurt Tippmann, 141-36 in 15th season at Snider.

LAST CONTEST: Carroll beat Fort Wayne Bishop Dwenger, 40-13. Snider beat Fort Wayne South, 41-0.

PREVIOUS MEETING: Carroll, 28-21, on August 26, 2022.

UP NEXT: Carroll (Fort Wayne) hosts Fort Wayne Wayne. Fort Wayne Snider travels to Homestead.

TOP PERFORMERS: Jimmy Sullivan was 18-of-31 for 298 yards with three touchdowns for the No. 9 (Class 6A) Chargers against Bishop Dwenger. Uriah Buchanan scampered 11 times for 140 yards with two scores for the No. 1 (Class 5A) Panthers against Fort Wayne South.

COACHES’ CORNER: “Snider has a very storied tradition and will play sound, fundamental football. They run the ball very well and play very solid defense. We will have to defend the run, win the line of scrimmage, and take care of the football if we desire to be successful.” – Carroll’s (Fort Wayne) Doug Dinan.

“Carroll is a very good football team with talented players that are well-coached. Offensively, they deploy a very good passing game lead by quarterback Jimmy Sullivan. They have a good group of wide receivers led by Hansen Haffner. We have to do a good job in coverage and avoid giving up easy, quick scores. Defensively, they bring a lot of pressure. We have to block their guys to open holes in the run game. Our quarterback (Ke’ron Billingsley) needs to do a good job of keeping our offense balanced, both throwing and running, for us to be most effective. As in every game, the line of scrimmage is a huge factor. Special teams will also be a big key as they have good kickers and punters. Field position in special teams will make a big difference. Snider cannot make self-induced mistakes and be successful.  We have to limit our own mistakes.” – Fort Wayne Snider’s Kurt Tippmann.

FISHERS (3-1) AT BROWNSBURG (4-0)

KICKOFF: 7 p.m. EDT, Roark Stadium.

COACHES: Curt Funk, 19-17 in fourth season at Fishers, 96-53 in 14th season overall. John Hart, 64-17 in eighth season at Brownsburg, 331-98 in 39th season overall.

LAST CONTEST: Fishers lost to Hamilton Southeastern, 35-34, OT. Brownsburg beat Avon, 53-30.

PREVIOUS MEETING: Brownsburg, 41-28, on September 16, 2022.

UP NEXT: Fishers hosts Avon. Brownsburg travels to Westfield.

TOP PERFORMERS: JonAnthony Hall caught eight passes for 142 yards for the No. 6 (Class 6A) Tigers against Hamilton Southeastern. Cayden Olinger had nine receptions for 135 yards for the No. 1 (Class 6A) Bulldogs against Avon.

COACHES’ CORNER: “We have a big challenge this week vs. Brownsburg. That is never an easy place to play, and they will have a packed house for the game. We need to mentally get over last week’s tough loss and focus on the challenges that Brownsburg brings. For us to have success, we must do the little things correctly in the game. We are excited for the opportunity on Friday night.” – Fishers’ Curt Funk.

“This is the best Fishers team we have played in my eight years at Brownsburg. Their front seven are fast and aggressive. If we can protect, we feel we have an advantage with our receivers vs, their defensive backs. Their offense is high octane with a great running back (Khobie Martin) and a great wide receiver (JonAnthony Hall). We have to limit their big plays from those two players.” – Brownsburg’s John Hart.

HERITAGE (4-0) AT ADAMS CENTRAL (4-0)

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

COACHES: Casey Kolkman, 16-16 in fourth season at Heritage, 62-75 in 14th season overall. Michael Mosser, 131-48 in 15th season at Adams Central.

LAST CONTEST: Heritage beat South Adams, 34-14. Adams Central beat Jay County, 42-7.

PREVIOUS MEETING: Adams Central, 42-7, on September 16, 2022.

UP NEXT: Heritage entertains Lapel. Adams Central hosts South Adams.

TOP PERFORMERS: Kobe Meyer raced 26 times for 162 yards with two touchdowns and completed 7-of-16 for 119 yards for three scores for the Patriots against South Adams. Max Hamilton scored a pair of touchdowns for the No. 2 (Class 1A) Flying Jets against Jay County.

COACHES’ CORNER: “Adams Central is one of the best programs in the state, in any class. They are well-coached and play physical, disciplined football. First and foremost, we must stop the run. Their Wing-T attack is old school at its best. They are not fancy or flashy. They just out-execute their opponents to establish the run. If we can play great defense, we will have a chance. This is one of the games that our seniors have been preparing for since they came in with me as freshman. In order to take the next step as a program, this is an opponent that we have to be able to compete against. We embrace this challenge and are excited for the opportunity.” – Heritage’s Casey Kolkman.

“This will be our first big test of the season. Heritage is very good in all facets of the game. They are skilled and physical. Their quarterback No. 3 (Kobe Meyer) is the best that we will face. He is elusive and fast. He loves to run, but can pass and does have guys who can catch the ball. They are big up front, so it will be difficult for us to handle. We must be ready for a hard-nosed matchup. We must stop Meyer and we must execute on offense. If we don’t, we will get beat.” – Adams Central’s Michael Mosser.

LAWRENCE NORTH (4-0) AT CARMEL (2-2)

KICKOFF: 7 p.m. EDT, Greyhound Stadium.

COACHES: Patrick Mallory, 39-68 in 11th season at Lawrence North, 53-76 in 13th season overall. John Hebert, 76-29 in ninth season at Carmel.

LAST CONTEST: Lawrence North beat North Central (Indianapolis), 49-14. Carmel lost to Louisville Trinity (Ky.), 41-14.

PREVIOUS MEETING: Carmel, 38-14, on September 16, 2022.

UP NEXT: Lawrence North hosts Ben Davis. Carmel entertains North Central (Indianapolis).

TOP PERFORMERS: Tanner Aspeslet went 11-of-16 for 320 yards with five touchdowns for the No. 8 (Class 6A) Wildcats against North Central (Indianapolis). Anthony Coellner was 12-of-17 for 107 yards with a score for the Greyhounds against Louisville Trinity.

COACHES’ CORNER: “Offensively, we need to get the ball to our playmakers and let them play ball. Defensively, we need to stay aggressive and stay stout against the run. They give a lot of different looks in the run game. Their quarterback (Anthony Coellner) can run and has a good arm. We love our team. They have worked really hard since the end of last season. They knew what they wanted to do, and looked at us for guidance every single day. This team has been the hardest working and most coachable group since we have been here. The coaches work tirelessly every single day to try and help give them the best versions our ourselves that we can.” – Lawrence North’s Pat Mallory.

“Lawrence North is very potent on offense with several explosive playmakers and a quarterback (Tanner Aspeslet) that can get them the ball in space. We will need to be very disciplined on defense and tackle well. Our offense will also need to control the football against a defense that is aggressive and opportunistic. We also need our coverage units on special teams to be effective limiting Lawrence North’s return yardage which can lead to shorter fields for their offense.” – Carmel’s John Hebert.

NORTH HARRISON (4-0) AT BROWNSTOWN CENTRAL (4-0)

KICKOFF: 7 p.m. EDT, Blevins Stadium.

COACHES: Mark Williamson, 71-49 in 12th season at North Harrison, 87-67 in 15th season overall. Reed May, 295-62 in 31st season at Brownstown Central.

LAST CONTEST: North Harrison beat Charlestown, 34-22. Brownstown Central beat Salem, 47-0.

PREVIOUS MEETING: Brownstown Central, 27-22, on September 16, 2022.

UP NEXT: North Harrison plays at Eastern (Pekin). Brownstown Central goes to Seymour.

TOP PERFORMERS: Bryce Fessel tallied 18 carries for 162 yards for the Cougars against Charlestown. Gregory Hutcheson had four rushes for 80 yards with a score for the No. 2 (Class 2A) Braves against Salem.

COACHES’ CORNER: “For us to go to Brownstown and leave with a victory, we must play mistake-free. Special teams and penalties will play a big part. Brownstown will not beat themselves. We will need to cause a mistake or turnover to win.” – North Harrison’s Mark Williamson.

“North Harrison is a very physical football team that likes to run the ball and control the clock. To be able to win. we will need to match their physicality and get a few stops. If we play well and win the turnover battle, we have a chance.” – Brownstown Central’s Reed May.

NORTH POSEY (4-0) AT HERITAGE HILLS (4-0)

KICKOFF: 7 p.m. CDT, The Jungle.

COACHES: Waylon Schenk, 44-24 in seventh season at North Posey, 72-48 in 12th season overall. Todd Wilkerson, 87-41 in 12th season at Heritage Hills.

LAST CONTEST: North Posey beat Tell City, 35-0. Heritage Hills beat South Spencer, 40-0.

PREVIOUS MEETING: North Posey, 33-26 (2OT) on September 16, 2022.

UP NEXT: North Posey goes to Tecumseh. Heritage Hills plays at Gibson Southern.

TOP PERFORMERS: Kolton Gardner came up with 11 rushes for 45 yards with two scores for the No. 6 (Class 2A) Vikings against Tell City. Jeff Goldberry registered seven carries for 100 yards with two touchdowns for the No. 3 (Class 3A) Patriots against South Spencer.

COACHES’ CORNER: “We need to take care of the football. Heritage Hills’ defense and special teams have created havoc on opposing offenses this year. They create turnovers and turn those into points.  We must protect the football. We have to manage the environment. ‘The Jungle’ is a tough place to play, so we cannot let the environment affect what we do on the football field.  Once the game starts, we have to focus on what is happening between the lines. We need to win the line of scrimmage. They have a strong rushing attack, and we have a strong rushing attack. The team that wins the line of scrimmage will win the game. We must limit their explosive plays. They have some dynamic athletes, so we have to contain them and not allow the big plays. They will take some deep shots, and they are going to score some points, so we just have to make them earn those points.” North Posey’s Waylon Schenk.

“To earn a victory this week, we must contain North Posey’s dual-threat quarterback (Liam Stone) and play outstanding team defense. Offensively, we need to keep the running game going and be efficient in the passing game. We want to create momentum with great special teams play. It will take outstanding execution in all three phases of the game to be successful on Friday night.” – Heritage Hills’ Todd Wilkerson.

NORTHWOOD (3-1) AT WARSAW (4-0)

KICKOFF: 7 p.m. EDT, Fisher Field.

COACHES: Nate Andrews, 76-30 in 10th season at NorthWood, 116-69 in 17th season overall. Bart Curtis, 43-15 in sixth season at Warsaw, 244-117 in 33rd season overall.

LAST CONTEST: NorthWood lost to Northridge, 25-21. Warsaw beat Concord, 10-3.

PREVIOUS MEETING: NorthWood, 42-21, on September 16, 2022.

UP NEXT: NorthWood entertains Plymouth. Warsaw plays at Mishawaka.

TOP PERFORMERS: Keith Miller racked up 13 tackles for the No. 9 (Class 4A) Panthers against Northridge. Reed Zollinger accumulated 28 rushes for 247 yards and a touchdown for the Tigers against Concord.

COACHES’ CORNER: “We must respond with a great week of practice. We must trust and believe in our core values of effort, attitude, and toughness. We must play fast the entire game and not wear down physically and more importantly mentally.” – NorthWood’s Nate Andrews.

“We can’t give the Panthers any additional or unearned possessions. They are plenty good enough without added assistance from the Tigers. We have to respect the football. We need to align correctly defensively and know where the NorthWood ‘playmakers’ are located. We have to stay in the coverage called and can’t have half of us playing one thing and the other half playing another thing. No. 3 (Nitro Tuggle), No. 7 (Trey Woods), No. 8 (Jojo Edmond), No. 9 (Landon Perry), No. 12 (Owen Roeder), and No. 35 (Seth Russell) can all make a difference and make a defense look absolutely foolish. We must take care of the football and match or exceed NorthWood’s energy, passion, and competitive drive.” – Warsaw’s Bart Curtis.

WARREN CENTRAL (2-2) AT INDIANAPOLIS BEN DAVIS (3-1)

KICKOFF: 7 p.m. EDT, Giant Stadium.

COACHES: Mike Kirschner, 13-12 in third season at Warren Central, 152-82 in 21st season overall. Russ Mann, 3-1 in first season at Ben Davis.

LAST CONTEST: Warren Central beat Lawrence Central, 25-16. Ben Davis lost to IMG Academy (Florida), 34-14.

PREVIOUS MEETING: Ben Davis, 42-28, on September 16, 2022.

UP NEXT: Warren Central hosts Indianapolis Pike. Ben Davis travels to Lawrence North.

TOP PERFORMERS: Jay Holmsn hauled in a 20-yard pass for a score for the Warriors against Lawrence Central. Thomas Gotkowski completed 32-of-51 for 232 yards with two touchdowns for the No. 3 (Class 6A) Giants against IMG Academy.

COACHES’ CORNER: “We are playing a very talented Ben Davis team this Friday that presents numerous challenges. We will need to control the time of possession and limit their offensive touches if possible.” – Warren Central’s Mike Kirschner.

“We need to start fast. That is crucial. It is important for us to develop the habit of applying pressure and just keep applying pressure early We have to be locked in for all three phases of the game and have a mindset of why it is important. On most Friday’s, it is difficult to constantly dominate all three phases. Our school, our students, our parents, and our community brought so much juice and excitement to Giant Stadium this past Friday. The challenge for us this week is to match the same juice and the energy from last week needs to be matched again this week.” – Ben Davis’s Russ Mann.

WESTFIELD (4-0) AT HAMILTON SOUTHEASTERN (4-0)

KICKOFF: 7 p.m. EDT, Royals Stadium.

COACHES: Jake Gilbert, 96-52 in 13th season at Westfield, 126-88 in 19th season overall. Michael Kelly, 30-7 in fourth season at Hamilton Southeastern, 44-23 in seventh season overall.

LAST CONTEST: Westfield beat Noblesville, 28-21. Hamilton Southeastern beat Fishers, 35-34, OT.

PREVIOUS MEETING: Hamilton Southeastern, 20-0, on November 11, 2022 in Class 6A regional.

UP NEXT: Westfield entertains Brownsburg. Hamilton Southeastern goes to Zionsville.

TOP PERFORMERS: Max Nosler ended with five receptions for 66 yards for the No. 5 (Class 6A) Shamrocks against Noblesville. Donovan Hamilton caught five passes for 120 yards with a touchdown for the No. 4 (Class 6A) Royals against Fishers.

COACHES’ CORNER: “We will have to tackle extremely well. Hamilton Southeastern has so many explosive weapons on offense that can score on any down. They are scary! We’ll have to keep the ball in front of us, but that will be a tall task. We also can’t get dominated by their offensive line. They have a couple of studs there too. On offense, we have played well but turned it over too many times. We can’t do that tonight!” – Westfield’s Jake Gilbert.

“Westfield is a very well-coached program with players that are extremely talented and disciplined.  Their offensive and defensive lines are big and move very well. We will have to win at the line of scrimmage, match their physicality, and play extremely disciplined to have success.” – Hamilton Southeastern’s Michael Kelly.

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