Normal U-High 18
NORMAL — A clutch comeback gave No. 8 (Class 5A) Mahomet-Seymour a share of the Corn Belt Conference title. But an injury to star tailback Chase Diedrich spoiled some of the fun.
Diedrich's 8-yard touchdown run put the Bulldogs ahead for good late in the fourth quarter. But on M-S' ensuing drive, while trying to run out the clock, Diedrich suffered an ankle injury.
"I can't give you anything definitive, but it looks bad," M-S coach Keith Pogue said. "It's a bittersweet deal. We have some talented young backs, but we can't replace him."
Diedrich, the area's leading rusher, finished with 108 yards rushing and two touchdowns on 22 carries. His 61-yard run in the third quarter got M-S within 15-13.
No. 10 (Class 5A) Normal U-High, seeking its first outright Corn Belt title since 1989, had a chance to tie the game in the closing seconds but missed a long field goal attempt.
"I'm just proud of the guys," Pogue said. "That showed the depth of their character."
M-S, Bloomington Central Catholic and Normal U-High shared the league title. M-S last won the Corn Belt in 2005.
Marshall Graham returned a kickoff 87 yards for a touchdown and made a key defensive stop late in the game. Clay Kibler had two interceptions, and Garret Risley added another. But it was Risley's 61-yard punt return late in the game that set up Diedrich's winning run.
"We just put that punt return in Wednesday," Pogue said. "It worked."
Prairie Central 44
FAIRBURY — Jackson Carver's 57-yard scoring catch prevented the shutout for the Eagles.
Kyle Moody had 102 yards rushing for the Hawks.
El Paso/Gridley 55
LeROY — Shane Bruning rushed for 69 yards and a touchdown for the Panthers.
Blue Ridge 6
FIELDCREST — The Knights remained winless on the season.
FISHER — Dion Unzicker rushed for 142 yards and scored on a 46-yard run as the Bunnies stayed on pace for the playoffs. Justin Coy added 91 yards rushing and gave Fisher an early spark, scoring on two 4-yard runs for a 13-0 lead at halftime.
Parker Perrero made the most of his one pass attempt, hooking up with Zach Owens for an 11-yard TD.
St. Joseph-Ogden 35
ST. JOSEPH — The Spartans delivered on defense, making three stops on fourth down and picking off a pass.
"Flanagan played hard and played to win," Spartans coach Dick Duval said. "It was important for us to score first and kick and put pressure on them. Those fourth-down stops were big as well."
Chase Patton scored four times for SJ-O, including a 49-yard run after Flanagan closed within 21-18.
On the next possession, Dylan Troyer picked off a pass with three minutes remaining. Patton scored again, this time from 35 yards.
"We really needed to run the ball well," Duval said. "Chase made some runs when we needed him to."
SJ-O can clinch its 21st consecutive playoff spot with a win at Paxton-Buckley-Loda.
"We still have to play good football," said SJ-O senior Andy Bensyl, who had a touchdown reception from Blake Hoveln. "PBL is a hard-hitting school, and they have nothing to lose."
TREMONT — The Falcons built a 28-6 halftime lead and cruised to a road victory.
Trevor Smith scored two touchdowns and GCMS capitalized on Tremont's fumbled punt return with four seconds left in the first half on a Zach Kirby to Sam Johnson 12-yard TD pass.
Tremont didn't score its second touchdown until about two minutes remained.
"Our kids played an outstanding game in all aspects of the game," Falcons coach Mike Allen said. "Special teams (forced) two turnovers, and just our kids played well."
ARCOLA — Omar Rojas rushed for 144 yards and a touchdown as the Purple Riders stayed alive for the postseason. Zach Moutria added 96 yards rushing, and Jose Tamez scored twice.
Villa Grove 49
VILLA GROVE — Ryan Pearce rushed for 118 yards and John Henderson passed for three touchdowns, helping Villa Grove even its record at 4-4.
Pearce scored four touchdowns, including a 4-yard reception and runs of 19 and 12 yards. He also returned an interception 39 yards for a score.
Henderson was 8 of 16 through the air for three TDs. Besides Pearce, Henderson connected with Travis Arnold on a 64-yard score and with Quentin Spannegel on a 1-yard TD.
Arnold caught three passes for 87 yards.
The lone TD for A-L (1-7) came on a 15-yard run by Zach Riley in the fourth quarter.
Shane Frick led the Blue Devils with six tackles, including three solos.
Cerro Gordo/D-W 26
South Piatt 12
BEMENT — Cody Woollen had 165 yards rushing and three touchdowns for the surging Broncos.
Matt Wiemelt (11 tackles), Dustin Green (nine) and Kyle Gideon (eight) led the defense.
C.J. Somers led South Piatt with 148 yards rushing and two scores.
St. Teresa 54
Sullivan/Okaw Valley 14
DECATUR — Caden May rushed for 111 yards and scored on a 1-yard run for the Redskins.
MACON — The Warriors bounced back from a shutout loss last week to Maroa-Forsyth by rolling on the road to improve to 6-2.
CLINTON — The second-ranked Rockets (Class 3A) led 42-0 at halftime, setting the tone with Micah Johnson's 85-yard return of the opening kickoff.
Justin Deters (101 yards) and Michael Lafenhagen (86 yards) led the rushing attack. Taylor Black rushed for 57 yards and passed for 57. Mitch Negangard had two sacks and a 21-yard interception return for a touchdown.
East Central 0
BROADLANDS — Luke Clapp returned the second-half kickoff 82 yards for a touchdown as Tri-County spoiled East Central's homecoming/Senior Night.
Tyler McGregor and Tanner Bodle each scored twice in the win.
East Central interim coach Jeremy Dirksmeyer said he was proud of his team's performance, noting it played "really well" in the first half.
SHELBYVILLE — The Sages scored 25 fourth-quarter points to pull away to a decisive road victory.
"It's huge," Monticello coach Cully Welter said of the win. "They scared me. I tend to overestimate every opponent, but you see what their quarterback can do. They have some weapons, so I was worried coming in. So I was pretty pleased with the win."
Ryan Donohue ran 31 times for 208 yards and one touchdown for Monticello, and teammate Jacob Williams gained 90 yards on 10 carries. Williams scored on runs of 3 and 45 yards.
Sages quarterback Parker Trice connected with Colton Gibson on scoring passes of 8 and 6 yards and also scored on a 1-yard run.
Defensively for Monticello, Donohue recorded three sacks and Luke Dunn had eight tackles and an interception.
ARGENTA — Gage Eller passed for 231 yards and ran for a 10-yard touchdown in the Bombers' home victory.
Cameron Hupp paced the A-O ground attack with 71 yards rushing and scores of 4 and 6 yards. He also caught two passes for 84 yards.
Ryan Barnes caught five passes for 96 yards and rushed for 42 yards. His two TDs included a 48-yard interception return.
Clifton Central 7
WATSEKA — The Warriors guaranteed themselves a spot in the playoffs with their sixth victory of the season.
MOMENCE — Mike Harmon scooped up his own team's fumble and rumbled 51 yards for a score for Paxton-Buckley-Loda. Dakota Zenner added a 77-yard TD catch.
St. Thomas More 32
Iroquois West 0
CHAMPAIGN — The Sabers won their third in a row and recorded their second straight shutout to stay in the hunt for a playoff spot. Paul Comet rushed for 88 yards and scored on runs of 1, 5 and 4 yards. Teammate Storm Joop was 6 of 9 through the air for 153 yards, including scoring tosses of 23 and 42 yards to Kevin Carroll, who finished with four catches for 128 yards.
John Strauser led the Saber defense with 12 tackles, including three for loss. Half of Comet's eight tackles were for loss. STM held Iroquois West to 100 total yards.
Tyler Clay ran for 44 yards for the Raiders.
GEORGETOWN — Bismarck-Henning scored three touchdowns in the opening 4 1/2 minutes, starting with a scoring run by Kevin Allen, and had enough points by halftime (41) that a running clock was in existence the entire second half. B-H's lead reached 34-0 after 15 1/2 minutes.
B-H outgained the Buffaloes 310-59 before intermission, with Reed Collins and Allen each rushing for at least 119 yards in the first two periods.
Collins, who ended with 160 yards rushing, scored three TDs, Allen two and Sam Shoaf one on the ground. The other Blue Devils' score was on a pass from Krystian Ingram to Adam Baker. Shoaf led the defense with nine tackles (three for loss).
Brock Herrin had 11 tackles and Tanner Kelley 10 to lead G-RF/C, which plays at Westville in the annual Coal Bucket game next week. G-RF/C had 84 yards total offense, 46 on the ground.
Salt Fork 42
DANVILLE — Brandon Dixon scored two first-quarter TDs and David Sacre one as the Storm took a 21-point lead en route to a win. Ryland Fluhr also scored twice for the unbeaten Storm and Colton Osborne reached the end zone once.
Milford/Cissna Park 22
FITHIAN — The Bearcats halted a five-game losing streak behind Eron Marquez's 116 yards rushing. Josh Marquez scored on a 1-yard run in the first quarter to give Milford/Cissna Park (3-5) a lead it never relinquished. The Bearcats also scored on Eron Marquez's 13-yard run and Beau Anderson's 3-yard dash. Hunter Tharp pulled the Comets (2-6) within 14-7 in the fourth quarter on a 2-yard scoring run.
Hoopeston Area 13
HOOPESTON — Telito Karuzis scored on a 32-yard run in the final four minutes, breaking a tie and lifting Westville to victory. Shane Overshiner, who scored one TD, rushed for a game-high 108 yards. Karuzis gained 84 yards. Terrence Poke passed for 122 yards, rushed for 71 and made eight tackles to spark the Cornjerkers, who committed four turnovers. Westville's defensive effort was led by Trae Ford and Ryan Pintar with 11 tackles apiece.