Southridge nips Tell City

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Sports Editor

TELL CITY—Using a ball-control running game and an occasional big pass, Southridge held off Tell City 24-21 in PAC football Friday.
The Raiders ran an incredible 65 rushing plays (including taking a knee twice at the end of the game) for 224 yards.
They also completed seven passes for 127 yards, including touchdown passes of 33 and 38 yards from Luke Stetter to Connor Craig.
Tell City rushed for only 86 yards on 25 attempts and made only six first downs compared with Southridge’s 20.
Yet the Marksmen were in the game to the end thanks to three long touchdown plays, including two passes, and a strong, swarming defense against the run.
Only six of the Raiders’ runs went for more than 7 yards and 36 went for 3 yards or less.
After Tel City held the Raiders to minus-1 yard on their first possession—including Clint Waninger’s sacking Stetter on third down—it took just two plays for the Marksmen to score.
The second play was a 54-yard touchdown pass from Brennan Malone to Chris Schaefer.
Spenser Beard kicked the extra point to give Tell City a 7-0 lead with 7:24 left in the first quarter.
Though both are predominantly running teams, Southridge also scored quickly with a pass on its next possession. On the third play Stetter found Craig open for a 33-yard touchdown.
Guadalupe Perez kicked the extra point to tie the score 7-7 with 6:12 left in the first quarter.
Tell City took the lead again on a fourth-down play to start the second quarter. Malone rolled to his left but instead of passing ran 30 yards for the touchdown.
The extra point was missed, though.
That allowed Southridge to take a 14-13 lead on Stetter’s second touchdown pass to Craig and Perez’s extra point on the last play of the first half.
Craig was well covered after the catch this time, but he broke several tackles on his way to the end zone.
“We just didn’t make a few plays,” said Tell City Coach Ryan George. “That touchdown right before the half was a big momentum swing for them. He broke about four tackles—we’re better than that.”
Perez kicked a 22-yard field goal with 7:12 left in the third quarter to increase the Raiders’ lead to four points.
They added a 2-yard touchdown run by Michel with 7:44 left in the game.
Tell City answered with a 47-yard touchdown pass from Malone to Elliott Brown just 19 seconds later.
“He made a good catch and Spenser (Beard) made a good block downfield,” said George.
Tell City had only one possession after that, though, and failed to get a first down.
With Reese Miller sidelined most of the game with an injury from the previous week (he tried to play early in this game but gained only 3 yards on two carries), the Raiders’ defense keyed on Brown. He was held to 39 rushing yards, including 0 net yards on five carries in the second half.
Playing without right tackle Justin Gunterman, who has mononucleosis, also didn’t help Tell City’s running game.
“We’re beat up right now,” said George. “We had some guys step up, though.”
Even with a fully healthy line, “it’s hard to find creases on a team like that,” said George. “They were crashing their outside people real good and they’re a good tackling team.”
Tell City slipped to 4-2 overall, 2-2 in the PAC. Southridge, ranked No. 9 in the state in Class 2A, improved to 5-1 overall, 4-0 in the conference.
The Marksmen will host North Posey Friday at 7:30 p.m.