Shutout keeps Cougars rolling
ELLETTSVILLE -- The North Putnam defense made certain that two first-half touchdowns were all the Cougars needed for a conference road victory on Friday.
Allowing Edgewood just 159 yards of offense, the North Putnam (5-1, 2-1 WIC) defense was stout in a 13-0 win over the Mustangs (2-4, 1-2 WIC).
"I thought tonight our defense played really well," Cougar coach Greg Barrett said. "There were a couple of times Edgewood was inside the 15 and didn't score.
"I thought our defensive staff did great tonight," he added. "Those coaches don't get enough credit."
Calling it a team effort on defense, Barrett praised various defensive units, singling out defensive linemen Bobby Scheele and Grant Ewbank, along with linebackers Brayden White and Trevor Bingman.
White led the team with 11 tackles, although a number of teammates were close behind.
The coach praised junior defensive back Corbin Judy for another big game, along with secondary mates Cam McPherson and Daniel Huffman.
Admitting more points could have been scored, the coach had nice things to say about his offense as well.
"We did some really good things. Offensively, we left some points out there, but we were really balanced," Barrett said.
Running for 196 yards on 30 carries and gaining 130 more on 9-of-20 passing brought the Cougar total offense to 326 yards.
Max Haste opened the scoring in the second, catching a 29-yard touchdown fron Hayden Rudes.
Brad Hodges followed this up with a 14-yard touchdown run.
A drop on another likely TD and a late knee could have added to the total, but the coach was pleased with the performance.
"We'll take the win. We're happy about it," Barrett said. "We'll take 5-1 any day."
Hodges led the rushing attack with 91 yards on 12 carries.
Rudes had 130 yards and no interceptions on 9-of-20 passing. Haste was his favorite target, with three grabs for 74 yards.
Winners of three straight since a loss to Owen Valley, the Cougars find themselves heading in the right direction as the stretch run approaches.
"I'm real proud of these guys. They know we let one slip away early," Barrett said. "They're kind of hungry for that success. We haven't had it for a while.
"They're playing well as a team right now. As a coach, that's what you want."
The second-place tie in the WIC East will be broken next Friday when the Cougars visit Cascade (3-3, 2-1 WIC). The Cadets lost to Owen Valley Friday by a score of 42-20.
NP 0 13 0 0 -- 13
EHS 0 0 0 0 -- 0
NP: Haste 29-yd pass from Rudes (kick good)
NP: Hodges 14-yd run (kick failed)
Rushing: NP: 39 carries, 196 yards, 1 TD; EHS: 36 carries, 129 yards, 0 TDs
Passing: NP: 9-20, 130 yards, 0 INTs, 1 TD; EHS: 4-10, 30 yards, 0 INTs, 0TDs