The Catawba Ridge Copperheads were officially eliminated from playoff contention with a 28-7 loss to the Indian Land Warriors Friday.
The game between the two schools had huge playoff implications with both teams looking for their first Region 3-4A win, as they each sit at 0-3. Catawba Ridge is now 1-8 on the season and 0-4 in the region, while the Warriors improved to 5-4 and 1-3 in the region.
“I am really proud of them and the effort they made,” said Catawba Ridge head coach Zac Lendyak. “We are still missing opportunities to make plays.”
The first quarter consisted of 10 penalties between the two teams. Nearly every other play resulted in some sort of flag.
On the second Indian Land drive of the opening quarter, the Warriors were able to score on a 15-yard touchdown pass from Jaxon Scheidt to Chaz Portis to put Indian Land up 6-0 early.
Catawba Ridge was able to put together a good drive near the end of the first quarter, but had to punt after a penalty forced them backwards.
Indian Land turned the ball over on a Scheidt interception to open the second quarter on a pick from Ian Babcock taking the ball back to midfield for Catawba Ridge. Despite the turnover, the Copperheads couldn’t make anything happen and was again forced to punt. The punt resulted in a 46-yard return for the Warriors to put them at the 37 of Catawba Ridge.
Indian Land kept the ball on the ground from there as they were able to get within the 10-yard line. Sequel Patterson then punched it in with a 9-yard run to extend the Warriors lead with about seven minutes left in the half.
Catawba Ridge started CJ Couch at quarterback who played the entire first quarter. DJ Latimer came in for the Copperheads in the second quarter and moved the ball well for Catawba Ridge.
Latimer had the Copperheads driving at the 28 of Indian Land, but went for the end zone and ended up getting picked off by Camdin Portis. Patterson had a big 49-yard run on the first play from scrimmage getting Indian Land past midfield. The Warriors got to the red zone, but penalties and a second Indian Land interception, again by Babcock, killed the drive right before the half.
Indian Land had 10 penalties for 80 yards in the first half and Catawba Ridge had six for 49 yards. However, the Warriors had 219 yards to just 54 total yards for Catawba Ridge in the first half which led to Indian Land leading at the half.
Catawba Ridge got the ball to open the second half. Latimer came out to open the third quarter and got the Copperheads to the 34-yard line of the Warriors, but turned the ball over on downs.
Indian Land was able to move the ball on their first series of the second half. Again, Indian Land kept it on the ground between Scheidt and Patterson until Scheidt hit Hayden Morris for a 19-yard touchdown pass with about 4:43 left in the quarter.
Catawba Ridge was able to get things moving towards the end of the third quarter as Lincoln Wise came into the game and was able to lead the offense.
The Copperheads were threatening at the 14-yard line to open the fourth quarter and Latimer called his own number scoring on a run during the first play of the period.
Catawba Ridge recovered an onside kick and got the ball at midfield with the ensuing kick. However, the Copperheads couldn’t keep the momentum in their corner as they had to punt.
In the second half, Scheidt completed 8-of-8 passes to keep Indian Land moving the ball. Morris became the Warriors favorite target in the second half and Patterson did a lot on the ground. Scheidt was able to then hit Morris for an 8-yard touchdown pass with about 4:34 left in the game to extend the lead to 28-7 after a 2-point conversion by Patterson.
Scheidt finished with three touchdowns and 202 yards passing. Morris caught nine passes for 108 yards and Patterson rushed for 86 yards on 12 carries.
Catawba Ridge again tried to put together a strong drive near the end of the game, but Latimer was intercepted by Shrine Bowl selection Timir Hickman-Collins.
Catawba Ridge finished with exactly 150 total yards as they rushed for 75 yards on 29 carries and passed for 75 yards as well. Latimer rushed for 55 yards on 13 carries to lead the Copperheads. He also passed for 54 yards, while Couch passed for 21 yards. Lane Boutwell led in receiving for the Copperheads catching three passes for 32 yards.
Catawba Ridge will host Northwestern next week on Friday, Oct. 27 to finish out the regular season.
Mac Banks: firstname.lastname@example.org, @fortprep