Eagles struggle against Sullivan
South Putnam nearly beat the odds Friday night.
The Eagles found themselves down 14-0 to Sullivan and without
two starters due to an ejection and an injury in the first quarter of the Western Indiana Conference Western Division
contest. But they were far from out of their homecoming game.
However, a good Sullivan team and 10 penalties put a 42-28 damper on South Putnam's homecoming.
"Hats off to Sullivan. They've got an outstanding team. We knew they were loaded. You can't make the mistakes and do
the things that we did and get (a win) against a talented bunch like that," South Putnam coach Nathan Aker said.
South Putnam lost running back Kyle Shaffer to an injury in the first quarter. They also lost a starting lineman to an
ejection in the first period. And before the first quarter was over, Sullivan had intercepted two South Putnam passes.
Led by freshman Dylan Wood, South Putnam rallied to within a touchdown in the fourth quarter before losing to Sullivan 42-28
in the penalty-filled high-scoring game.
Wood came off the bench to run for 140 yards on 23 carries and scored on carries of 19, 3 and 4 yards.
Sullivan led 28-14 at halftime, but early the third period South Putnam closed to within a touchdown, 28-21, when Wood
scored on a three-yard run.
"We knew it was going to be tough. [South Putnam has] got a great running game. [Shaffer] got hurt early and [Wood] came in
and did a great job, too," Sullivan coach Trent Olsen said.
Penalties hurt both teams all night. Sullivan was flagged seven times for 70 yards and South Putnam was penalized 10 times
After Sullivan scored the first two touchdowns, the two teams traded scores. Sullivan led 28-14 at halfitme, but South Putnam put the first points on the board in the second half
when Josh Bills recovered a fumble and Woods capped a five-play drive with a three-yard touchdown. The Eagles trailed just 28-21
with 7:01 left in the third period.
Sullivan took a 35-21 lead into the fourth quarter. South Putnam closed to within a touchdown with 8:05 to play with a nine-play drive, Wood scoring on a four-yard run.
Wood's four-yard run right up the middle cut Sullivan's lead to 35-28.
South Putnam attempted an onside kickoff but Sullivan recovered the loose ball. Starting at the South Putnam 48-yard line,
the Golden Arrows scored in just seven plays.
Just 2:14 later, freshman quarterback Allen Plunkett, on in relief of starter Grady McHugh in the fourth quarter, capped a 63-yard
drive with a quarterback sneak for a touchdown. Sullivan's Connor Wright blocked the point-after-touchdown kick,
leaving the Golden Arrows with a 42-34 cushion and three minutes to play.
South Putnam attempted the on-side kickoff again and again Sullivan recovered and ran out the final three minutes of the contest.
At South Putnam
Sullivan 42, South Putnam 28
Sullivan 14 14 7 7 -- 42
South Putnam 0 14 7 7 --28
Sul -- Evan Conner 61 pass from Trey Powell (Alex Keppen kick) 7-0, 6:56 Q1.
Sul -- Trevor Magill 20 run (Keppen kick) 14-0, 2:27 Q1.
SP -- Dylan Wood 19 run (Jimmy Rutter pass from Grady McHugh) 14-8, 9:46 Q2.
Sul -- Mason Dean 37 run (kick failed) 20-8, 7:27 Q2.
SP -- Rutter 10 pass from McHugh (pass failed) 20-14, 2:42 Q2.
Sul -- Luke Spurlock 27 pass from Powell (Spurlock pass from Powell) 28-14, :15 Q2.
SP -- Wood 3 run (Noah Weiland kick) 28-21, 7:01 Q3.
Sul -- Conner 3 pass from Powell (Keppen kick) 35-21, 2:53 Q3.
SP -- Wood 4 run (Weiland kick) 35-28, 8:05 Q4.
Sul -- Magill 5 run (Keppen kick) 42-28, 3:00 Q4.
Rushing -- Sullivan: Magill 24-138, Dean 1-37, Conner 2-4, Powell 3-(-3). South Putnam: Wood 23-140, Scott 8-50, Shaffer 9-24, Plunkett 5-20
Passing -- Sullivan: Powell 11-19-0--203. South Putnam: McHugh 7-16-2--101; Plunkett 3-6-1--45.
Receiving -- Sullivan: Conner 7-152, Dean 3-24, Spurlock 1-27. South Putnam: Rutter 8-122, Scott 2-24.
Next game -- Next Friday, Sullivan (5-2, 3-1 in WIC West) will host West Vigo and South Putnam (5-2, 3-1 in WIC West) will play
at home against Northview.