Brodhead-Juda earns its revenge for last season with late TD
No one could fault the Evansville High defense for taking the fake.
After seeing Brodhead-Juda’s mammoth 290-pound fullback, Gary McAdory, hammer through them for five of the previous seven plays here Saturday, the Blue Devils braced for another pounding as the Cardinals stood just two yards from the go-ahead score with 10 seconds remaining.
Instead, Brodhead-Juda quarterback Jim Covert faked another dive play to McAdory and handed off to Tyler Lincoln, who found a crease and dove in for the 2-yard touchdown with six seconds left.
In a game that featured as many turnovers as points, the Cardinals finally broke a scoreless tie to secure a 6-0 victory and advance to the semifinals of the WIAA Division 4 football playoffs.
Brodhead (10-2) plays West Salem (11-1), a 42-0 winner over Wautoma, on Friday or Saturday at an undetermined site.
In knocking out Evansville (9-3), a semifinalist last year, Brodhead-Juda got double revenge. The Cardinals not only atoned for a 40-20 loss to Evansville during the regular season, but they got even for last year’s 16-14 heartbreaking playoff loss—a game the Blue Devils won on Pat Allen’s 35-yard touchdown reception from Andrew Keister as time expired.
“This feels a lot better,” said Lincoln, who finished with 106 yards on 19 carries. “We can take the film we had last year and throw it away. We can watch this one from now on.”
Aside from the Cardinals’ satisfying win, that film could be considered a horror flick, as both teams squandered opportunities and each had three turnovers. Fittingly, the final Brodhead-Juda drive started after Caleb Frost got an interception at midfield and returned the ball to the Evansville 46 with 2:55 left.
Then came the moment the Cardinals had long awaited.
“This is not only a win for these kids, but a win for those kids we had with us last year,” Brodhead-Juda coach Jim Matthys said. “Our defense played the best game in the three years I have been head coach. A lot of the credit goes to the desire of the kids.”
Evansville, which was held to 144 yards, had three drives inside the Cardinals’ 10, but the Blue Devils were turned away each time.
In the second quarter, the Blue Devils reached the Brodhead-Juda 6. But after a penalty forced a fourth-and-nine at the 12, Keister’s pass fell incomplete at the goal line.
Late in the third quarter, Evansville’s Peter Gernetzke recovered a Brodhead-Juda fumble at the Cardinals’ 11. But four straight runs by Derek Cashore came up a chain-link short at the Brodhead-Juda 4.
Then, midway through the fourth quarter, Kevin Diedrich blocked McAdory’s punt to give Evansville the ball at the Brodhead-Juda 8. But on the next play, Jeff Rackow picked up Cashore’s fumble to end the threat.
“We made too many mistakes,” Evansville coach Ron Grovesteen said. “Too many opportunities we missed. Normally, we score. I would like to have a few plays over again.”
Brodhead-Juda also squandered an opportunity at the end of the first half. After a Ethan Douglas fumble recovery set up the Cardinals at the Evansville 11, Covert had his 5-yard keeper called back on a holding penalty and then was sacked, before being intercepted with one second left.
But the Cardinals got the kinks worked out in their second attempt to score before time ran out. McAdory and Lincoln covered the final 46 yards, running between the tackles, for the only score in the game.
After reaching the Evansville 5, McAdory set up the final play fake with two runs up the middle to reach the 2-yard line. That gave Lincoln plenty of room for his dive over the left side of the line, as the Blue Devil defense swarmed McAdory.
“I just faked it and just ran as hard as I could,” said McAdory, who added 83 yards on 20 carries. “It kind of opened it up for Tyler to get in the end zone.”
BRODHEAD-JUDA 6, EVANSVILLE 0
Brodhead-Juda 0 0 0 6—6
Evansville 0 0 0 0—0
Scoring summary: BJ—Tyler Lincoln, 2 run (kick failed).
Statistics: First downs—BJ 13, E 9. Rushing—BJ 48-218, E 28-105. Yards passing—BJ 14, E 39. Passes—BJ 5-1-2, E 12-5-1. Fumbles—BJ 3-1, E 4-2. Penalties—BJ 9-80, E 3-23.
The play: After a fake handoff to running mate Gary McAdory, Tyler Lincoln dove through a hole on the left side of the Brodhead-Juda line with six seconds remaining for the game’s only score.
The player: Lincoln ran for 106 yards and the only touchdown in the 6-0 victory over 10th-ranked Evansville.
The quote: “I could have run any play. I don’t think it would have mattered with the fire in the eyes that offensive line had when we were down on third-and-goal,” Brodhead-Juda coach Jim Matthys said of the touchdown play.
The significance: Brodhead-Juda avenged a 40-20 regular-season loss, last year’s 16-14 playoff loss and advances the WIAA Division 4 semifinals.
The agenda: The Cardinals (10-2) face West Salem (11-1) on Friday or Saturday at an undetermined site.