By Phil Perry
For Civitas Media
MADISON – Despite a resilient effort and a strong first half showing, Scott fell to the No. 3 ranked class AA Miners of Mingo Central, 48-20 on Friday night.
“That is one of the best teams Scott has faced in a long time,” said Skyhawk coach Shann Elkins. “We told our kids that this is a good time to make a statement as a team. Outside of one day that we weren’t very focused, we had a great week of practice. The kids gave great effort and were in the game until mid-way through the third quarter.”
The rain pounded the Skyhawk turf and all night and the squad surged in the first half when they hustled their way into a 14-14 deadlock with their Cardinal Conference foes on the coattail of an electrifying 79-yard kickoff return by Nathan Ramsey for a touchdown.
“That gave them a spark. We had a sorry excuse for a practice this week for the first time this year and we weren’t ready to play,” said Miner head coach Yogi Kinder. “They (Scott) have won two games and we played like we won two games. Our effort sucked, but was a little better in the second half.” Scott signal caller Connor White scored on a 2-yard keeper up the gut of the Miner defense, providing a 14-14 tie at the half. The second half was all Mingo Central as Scott could only muster one score and Mingo Central extended a lead on the strength of a 22-0 run in the second quarter. Mingo Central quarterback Jeremy Dillon found Drew Hatfield on a slant pattern good for an 8-yard score, kicking off a scoring surge for his squad. Kinder said that his quarterback made some good second half decisions with the ball, both with his arm and his legs. “He did make some good plays,” he said. “We’re not a first and fifteen team. It’s hard to call a play for that when you are making stupid penalties like we did as a team.” The Miners were hit for seven penalties, good for 65 yards in the wrong direction.
Garrett Roberts scored Scott’s only points in the second half with a 2-yard dive. The Skyhawk offense, which relies on their ground game —- goes through the talented back. While he was an obvious focus of the Mingo Central defense, he still managed 100 yards on the ground.
“Look, coach (Shann) Elkins has those kids playing hard,” said Kinder. “He will do just fine with that program over there.”
Elkins said that a Miner fumble into the end zone in the third quarter served as a momentum shifter after it was recovered for a touchdown by Mingo Central’s Lee Chafin.
“It was a big play in the ball game,” Elkins said. “It was unfortunate for our kids.” Dillon hit Hatfield again for a 28-yard scoring pass and found Dalton Sheppard for a 21-yard strike to end the scoring on the night. Mingo Central (8-0) racked up 424 yards of offense while holding Scott (2-6) to 216. Dillon completed 14-of-26 passes in a consistent rain for 193 yards and three scores and most importantly for the Miners, no interceptions. Going into the contest, Dillon had thrown 20 touchdowns to only one pick.
Coach Elkins said that his team will focus on winning their last two games and do what they can to send their seniors out on a high note. “I feel like if we keep preparing well, practice like we did this week and really since about week-four the kids have focused not just physically but mentally —- we have a great opportunity to win the last two ballgames.”
Connor White completed 3-of-5 passes for 26 yards.
Garrett Roberts led all rushers with 100 yards on 15 touches. Nathan Ramsey rushed 17 times for 46 yards, Carson McComas had 40 yards on nine carries. Austin Mitchell had two catches for 25 yards and Ramsey caught one pass for a single yard for Scott.
Mingo Central will host Herbert Hoover (6-2) on Friday as Scott travels to Nitro (1-7).
Score by quarters:
Mingo: 14 0 22 12 – 48
Scott: 8 6 0 6 – 20