For the second week in a row, GHS had to defeat a team who defeated them in the regular season. The Tiger Cubs avenged its 19-13 overtime loss to the Cadets in commanding fashion. Asked about his team coming into its own at the right time, head coach Eric Davis said the timing was crucial.
"I think it's important," Davis said. "I think what we saw as a coaching staff was a team mature over the course of last maybe three to four -- since the Owen Valley game at Lucas Oil. We're talking steps forward and it's been consistent steps forward. Whereas in the earlier part of the season it was kind of inconsistent steps forward.
"What you're starting to see, in my opinion, would be we're pretty confident in our assignments," he continued. "We still have assignments errors, but for the most part our kids are starting to get confident and when we make personnel changes, our second and third guys have been in this long enough that they get it too, so you don't see the fall off that you might have expected to see earlier in the season."
Just three plays into the game, Tanner Battin and Keegan Remsburg hooked up for a 65-yard touchdown strike and Greencastle never looked back.
Greencastle next got on the board in the second quarter when kicker Kyle Parker connected on a 32-yard attempt, giving the Tiger Cubs a 10-0 lead. It wasn't an easy three points. Leading up to the kick, the Tiger Cubs fumbled the ball twice, with Trevor Teal and Battin covering the pigskin.
Cascade faced a fourth and two with :38 seconds remaining in the half. As GHS head coach called to the referee for a timeout, he was informed that Cascade had called a timeout, leaving the Tiger Cubs three remaining. Expecting the Cadets to go for it, GHS quickly changed personnel only to have to swift again as Cascade brought on its punting unit.
The Tiger Cubs used the Cascade gift to drive down to give Parker another try at three points just before the half.
Battin rushed for four yards and then hit a slashing Teal for an 18-yard pick up. Parker came onto the field to attempt a 32-yard kick. His try fell just short and the Tiger Cubs went into the half with a 10-0 lead.
Greencastle kept its foot to the floor in the second half.
Following two stalled possessions for Cascade, Greencastle began to move the ball in big chunks. Battin and Remsburg connected twice for 40 yards to put GHS at the 28-yard line. Senior rusher Jesse Vermillion took the ensuing handoff and powered his way for 27 yards, coming just short of the end zone. Mac Shuee came in a finished the deal with :50 remaining in the third to give the Tiger Cubs a 17-0 lead.
Vermillion provided the Tiger Cubs' final score with 7:03 left in the game, smashing in from two-yards out, giving GHS the 24-0 lead.
If the Cadets had any hopes of making the game interesting, Greencastle's Hayden Stuckwisch dashed them quickly.
Cascade became a pass-heavy offense in the second half and after connecting twice, they thought the third time might be the charm. Instead, Stuckwisch kept pace with his man, leapt at the last minute and extended to make an interception, allowing the Tiger Cubs to eat more time off the clock and ensure the win. The Cadets had one more play in the contest and it was a one-yard loss.
Following the game, Davis said the 2010 sectional has been a lot about redemption.
"It's a good feeling," Davis said of reaching the finals. "It's a chance once again, we talked about our sectional draw, being a chance at redemption. We felt like with the Cloverdale and Cascade games, in the regular season with as good as those teams are, we did not feel like we played to our best ability. So from that stand point, those two games were redemption games.
"And this next week comes certainly a formidable, very stiff challenge with North Putnam. But once again, it's a chance to go out and show better than what we did the first time we played. Lay it all out there and see what happens," he said.
He also spoke about having an all Putnam County sectional championship game and how his team will approach this game the same way it has all season long.
"We're going to get back to it like we have the whole season," Davis said. "On Monday, we're going to come in and do what we do, we're going to get ready to play North Putnam and we're going to lay it all out there and see what happens. Boy, it's a good measuring stick for our program for our first year to see North Putnam in the sectional championship. We're going to put it out there and see what happens."
Class 2A No. 30 Sectional
Cascade 0 0 0 0 -- 0
Greencastle 7 3 7 7 -- 24
Scoring by Quarter
GHS -- Remsburg 65-yard pass from Battin, Parker kick 10:34
GHS -- Parker 32-yard field goal
GHS -- Shuee 1-yard run, Parker kick :50
GHS -- Vermillion 2-yard run, Parker kick 7:03
Rushing -- Arthur 12-28, Butler 1-4, Bobidilla 2-2, Smith 6-(-1), Helmick 1-3, Hopper 1-0
Passing -- Smith 12-22-0-2 144 yards, 2 INT.
Receiving -- Hopper 8-126, Comer 2-9, Bobidilla 1-9, Arthur 1-0
Rushing -- Vermillion 12-103 TD, Teal 14-70, Battin 10-37, Christy 3-32, Hesler 3-10, Muncie 1-4, Shuee 1-1 TD
Passing -- Battin 9-17-0-1, 189 yards TD, INT.
Receiving -- Remsburg 5-132 TD, Hutcheson 3-36, Teal 1-18, R. Battin 1-3
Next game -- Greencastle will travel to North Putnam for the Class 2A No. 30 Sectional championship at 7 p.m.