Aug. 26—A delayed kickoff for hot weather, a 25-minute injury delay, and a longer halftime meant for a late night as Class 4A No. 5-rated Kokomo headed to Whiteland High School south of Indianapolis on Friday night for week 2 of the high school season. But the Wildkats handled adverse situations and emerged with a 27-13 victory in a clash of ranked foes.
Kokomo was mostly dominant against the Class 5A No. 2-rated Warriors in the first half. Kokomo forced a punt on Whiteland's first possession, then went on a patented Kokomo drive to take an early 7-0 lead. The Wildkats moved 80 yards in 13 plays with quarterback Reis Beard scoring from four yards out with 2:15 left in the 1st quarter.
Whiteland was able to respond with a lengthy drive of its own, but quarterback Oliver Taylor was injured on a third down play at the Kokomo 13 yard line. There was a 25 minute delay as medics tended to him, but he was able to signal to the crowd as he was taken off the field.
On the very next play the Warriors were able to tie it, as backup Kaiden Davidson hit Gunner Hicks on a 13-yard fade for a touchdown with 8:19 left in the second.
The Kats then took advantage of a kickoff out of bounds to go on a 65-yard scoring drive, the last 37 of which came on an impressive run by Beard. Kokomo would then get a three-and-out and was able to drive to the goal line, but Darrian Story was stuffed at the one yard line as time expired. Kokomo led 14-7 at the half.
To start the second half Whiteland attempted an onside kick, but Kokomo recovered to begin with excellent field position at midfield. The Kats were then able to erase most of the quarter with a lengthy drive. They were able to milk more than eight minutes off the clock over 15 plays as Beard capped the drive with a 2-yard TD. The PAT was blocked, but Kokomo led 20-7 and had dominated the time of possession.
Kokomo appeared to force a three-and-out on Whiteland's next possession, but feeling some desperation, the Warriors converted a fake punt where Hicks got free for a 25-yard run.
The Warriors elected to kick deep and Kokomo's ground game was able to eat more clock with a pair of first downs, but a penalty for a hold and an illegal shift had Kokomo facing a second and long, but Beard was able to find Rondell Greene for a 25 yard pass down the sideline for a critical first down at the Whiteland 28-yard line.
From there Kokomo went back to the ground. Darrian Story Jr. converted a first down, then Tracy Dowling scored on a 19-yard run with 3:48 left to make it 27-13 Kats. Greene then was able to close the game out with an interception with under 3 minutes left.
Kokomo's ground game was completely dominant with 294 yards on 52 carries. The defense was also up to the task, holding Whiteland to just 148 yards total and nine first downs. Beard finished the night with 122 yards and 3 TDs on the ground as well as 44 yards passing. Dowling was near the century mark with 94 yards on 17 carries.
— Travis Miller, for the Kokomo Tribune
WEBO 21, WESTERN 13
Visiting Western Boone came out on top of a back-and-forth game.
Western Boone took a 7-0 lead into halftime but Western roared to life with a pair of touchdowns in the third quarter for a 13-7 lead heading into the final period. Levi Shoemaker had Western's go-ahead score with a 6-yard run.
WeBo returned the favor in the fourth quarter, outscoring Western 14-0 to take the game.
Western (0-2) hosts Rensselaer Central next Friday in a non-division matchup of Hoosier Conference rivals.
TIPTON 38, ELWOOD 0
Tipton beat Elwood for the 23rd straight time and wasted no time building a lead. Calvin Condict got the scoreboard rolling with an 11-yard TD run after Tipton recovered a fumble deep in Elwood territory, He then scored on a 10-yard run to cap a 46-yard drive. And he finished the next drive with a one-yard plunge as the Blue Devils led 21-0 after a quarter.
The Blue Devils got a seven-yard TD run from Landon Spidel before Condict ran in his fourth score of the game for a 35-0 lead at halftime and a running clock in the second half.
Dakota Foerg kicked a 35-yard field goal in the third quarter for a 38-0 lead heading into the final period and the final score of the game.
The Blue Devils (1-1) host Class 3A No. 6 West Lafayette next Friday in Hoosier Conference action.
TRI-CENTRAL 26, W-D 6
Wes-Del took the early lead, 6-0 after a quarter before Tri-Central punched in a score in the second frame for a 6-6 halftime tie.
The Trojans notched two scores in the third quarter for a 20-6 lead going into the final frame, and ran in an extra TD in the final frame.
Tri-Central (1-1) opens Hoosier Heartland Conference play next Friday, hosing Class A No. 10 Sheridan.
CASS 34, NORTHFIELD 0
Cass made a statement in its first-ever Three Rivers Conference game, putting the visitors in a 28-0 hole by halftime. The Kings pushed the lead to 34-0 after three quarters.
The Kings (1-1) go on the road next Friday to visit Peru in TRC play.
PERU 42, WHITKO 6
The Bengals wasted no time putting visiting Whitko in a bind. Braxton Strong scored a pair of touchdowns and QB Matthew Roettger added a score for a 21-0 Bengal lead at the first stop. Zach Smithers got into the end zone in the second period, then Brady Hahn found paydirt and the Tigers cruised into halftime up 35-0 to set up a running clock in the second half.
Avionne Jackson scored for the Bengals in the second half for a 42-0 lead before Whitko finished the scoring.
Peru (2-0, 1-0 TRC) hosts Cass next Friday.
CARROLL 62, RIVERTON PARKE 0
Class A No. 5 Carroll punched in three scores in the first period to take control against visiting RP, 21-0 after a dozen minutes. The game was in the bag by halftime as Carroll romped to a 49-0 lead to trigger a running clock in the second half.
The Cougars (2-0) have yet to be scored on this season. They host Taylor next Friday in the opening HHC game for both.