Injuries put damper on victory as Cougars improve to 5-0
INDIANAPOLIS -- The undefeated, Class 2A, second-ranked, North Putnam Cougars football team traveled to Indianapolis Friday night to play the always tough, Park Tudor Panthers.
North Putnam improved its season record to 5-0, defeating the Panthers 21-6, but the biggest story of the game was injuries suffered by four Cougar players on the Park Tudor field artificial turf.
All three North Putnam quarterbacks, Griffen Dahlstrom, Brock Jones, and Tyler Watson, and lineman Josh Keyt were forced to the sideline with injuries.
The Cougars dominated the first half, scoring on a six-yard pass play from Dahlstrom to Adam Vondersaar with 2:45 left in the first quarter, and again in the second quarter, this time a 41-yard run by Vondersaar at the 10:04 mark.
Dahlstrom went out of the game with a turned ankle with 6:05 left in the half, with his team leading 14-0, and the Cougar defense continued to control the Panther offense.
North Putnam generated 227 yards in total offense in the first half, while limiting the home team to 87 yards.
In the third quarter, North Putnam's defense continued to dominate Park Tudor, limiting the Panthers to 15 total yards in the stanza, with a 48-yard punt by JT Francies to the Panthers 1 yard line, and a sack by Kyle Rooker of the Park Tudor quarterback stopping the only serious drive of the period.
Park Tudor scored its only points of the game with 11:18 left in the fourth quarter, and Francies grabbed two interceptions of Panther passes to stop any opportunities for scoring during the rest of the game.
Jones and Keyt were injured on the same play, with 9:21 left, and Watson was forced to the sideline on the next play from scrimmage by the Cougars.
"We overcame as much tonight as any team I've ever been a part of to get out of here with a victory," North Putnam head coach Dave Pasch said following the game.
Rooker gained 143 yards on 32 carries to lead the Cougars in rushing.
Vondersaar followed with 123 yards on 11 carries, Dahlstrom had 33 on four carries, and Francies had four yards on one rush.
As a team, North Putnam gained 296 rushing yards compared to Park Tudor's 82 yards on the ground.
Defensively, Vondersaar led the Cougars with nine tackles, followed by Justin Ensor with eight.
Rooker recovered one fumble, and Francies had two interceptions.
The Cougars (5-0, 2-0 WCC) travel to WCC and County rival Greencastle next Friday night to play the Tiger Cubs, with the game beginning at 7:00 p.m.
At Park Tudor
North Putnam -- Dahlstrom to Vondersaar 6 pass (Dahlstrom kick) 2:45
North Putnam -- Vondersaar 41 run (Dahlstrom kick) 10:04
North Putnam -- Rooker 3 run (Ford kick) 0:16.2
Park Tudor -- Powell to Dungy 35 pass (Kick blocked) 11:18
First Downs -- North Putnam (18), Park Tudor (12)
Punts-Yards - North Putnam (3-98), Park Tudor (5-194)
Fumbles-Lost - North Putnam (2-1), Park Tudor (2-1)
Penalties-Yards - North Putnam (10-95), Park Tudor (6-52)
North Putnam (5-0, 2-0 WCC):
Rushing - (51 Carries, 296 yards) -- Dahlstrom 4-33, Rooker 32-143, Vondersaar 11-123, Jones 3-(-7), Francies 1-4, Watson 0-0.
Passing - (1-5-1-2, 6 yards) -- Dahlstrom 1-1, 6 yds., 1 TD, 0 INT, Jones 0-4, 0 yds., 0 TD, 2 INT.
Receiving - (1 catch, 6 yards) -- Vondersaar 1-6.
Park Tudor (2-3, 0-2 ICC):
Rushing - (23 Carries, 82 yards) -- Powell 8-34, Tucker 5-10, Summerville
5-8, Payne 5-30.
Passing - (15-36-1-2, 135 yards) -- Powell 15-36, 135 yds., 1 TD, 2 INT.
Receiving - (15 catches, 135 yards) -- Dungy 8-82, McCombs 4-30, Summerville 2-19, Spurgeon 1-4.
Next Game: The Cougars (5-0, 2-0 WCC) travel to WCC and County rival Greencastle next Friday night to play the Tiger Cubs, with the game beginning at 7:00 p.m.