CALUMET TOWNSHIP — When South Central’s Friday night game against Calumet was postponed to Saturday morning due to the weather, Satellites coach Buzz Schoff confessed that the replay would give the host Warriors the advantage, despite a two-touchdown lead.
Calumet proved Schoff’s reservations justified when it came out on the third play of the resumed second quarter with a touchdown, and eventually tied the game at halftime.
Things would only get worse for South Central in the second half, with the game’s momentum in favor of Calumet, which would ultimately roll off 26 unanswered points on the way to a 34-21 win over the Satellites.
“It’s hard to do when you line up your defense at the 50-yard line to start a (resumed) game,” Schoff said. “It puts you in a different groove. If you start a game on offense, you have to play, which Calumet did to get back into the groove of things.
“They get a big run on the second play that puts them right at the goal line.”
After Paris Hernandez scored the first Calumet touchdown with 10:45 left in the second quarter, the Satellites gave the Warriors the ball right back after fumbling on its next drive. That led to a Bubba Johnson 37-yard touchdown rumble to tie the game up at 14-14 with 5:10 left in the second quarter.
“That’s a good team over there with some very good athletes who are well-coached,” Schoff said. “I saw this happening, but yet you hope that your kids can come out here and play hard. Our kids played hard, but this wasn’t an ideal situation.”
An attempted Hail Mary pass from Schmack in the closing seconds of the first half failed to connect for the touchdown, and the two teams went into the locker room tied. Schoff didn’t like what he saw in the demeanor of his team during the break.
“The guys were acting like they were down 28-0,” Schoff said. “All the momentum was on Calumet’s side at that point, but the score was still 14-14. We tried to get on track in the second half, but turnovers also didn’t help us.”
After Calumet took the lead 20-14 compliments of a 42-yard touchdown run midway through the third quarter, South Central was unable to answer on its next possession, as the Warriors charged downfield for another touchdown bid.
The Satellites got a burst of hope when they stopped the Warriors from scoring from seven yards out on fourth down. That was short-lived as they fumbled the ball back toward their own end zone on the second play of their drive. Deandre White picked it up and ran it in for a 26-14 lead with 6:41 to go in the fourth period.
“The fumble there was kind of the nail in the coffin,” Schoff said. “It happened early, so you think you have a little bit of life left. But it hurts whenever your offense gives up a touchdown. We just were unable to bounce back after that play.”
Schmack would finally orchestrate a scoring drive on the next possession, capped off with his 8-yard run to cut the deficit to 26-21 with 2:35 remaining. South Central attempted an onside kick, but Calumet recovered at midfield and scored five plays later on an AJ Fowler 1-yard run for a 34-21 lead with 1:30 left.
Any hope for a miracle in the closing minute for the Satellites evaporated on their next possession when Tristan Sepko intercepted Schmack at the Calumet 15.
“Our kids fought hard, but we just have to get ready for a game on the road way out near Terre Haute,” Schoff said.
South Central plays at North Knox this coming Saturday at 5 p.m. CDT.