QB Pettit passes for 231 yards, 2 TDs to lead Bulldogs to 22-7 Sectional Semifinal win over LC
A USA-365.com Special Report by Mark Smith
|Lake Central and Crown Point get ready to start the state tournament in St. John last Friday. (Photos by Mark Smith)|
|CP's Matthew Walters (24) looks for running room while junior Carl Watroba (79) clears the way.|
|It was cold at Lake Central and Bulldog fans knew it at the playoff game last Friday night.|
|Junior Carl Watroba (79) gives junior Will Pettit (7) time to throw last Friday at LC. Pettit tossed two touchdown passes.|
|CP's Tysen Cazy (84) looks to take it down the sidelines against Lake Central's Marco Ciapponi (25) in the Class 6A Semifinal in St. John last week.|
|CP junior Calvin Pawlowski (39) looks to do bad things to LC quarterback Mateo Cedano (15) in last week's playoff game.|
|Lake Central did what they could to keep the Crown Point pass rush away from passer Mateo Cedano (15) last Friday.|
|CP's Treston Logan (11) holds the evidence that he scored a two point conversion last week against Lake Central.|
|Crown Point's David O'Toole (88) spins around and keeps his foot inbounds against Lake Central. O'Toole caught seven passes for 115 yards in CP's 22-7 victory.|
|There's a possibility that CP's defensive end Collin Flavin (13) is being held as he tries to grab LC halfback Felix Garcia (1) in last week's playoff game. Garcia scored LC's only touchdown.|
|I can't imagine how cold it was to stand on the sidelines the entire game last Friday in St. John, but the cheerleaders can tell you all about it. CP folks were dressed for the test as CP met LC.|
|CP fans who showed up were the brave and the bold and by the second half they were the brave and the cold last week. But smiles stayed warm as the Bulldogs defeated Lake Central 22-7. (All photos by Mark Smith)|
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|CROWN POINT (6-4)||0||15||7||0||22|
|LAKE CENTRAL (3-7)||7||0||0||0||7|
Friday, November 1, 2019 - 39 degrees (at kickoff), IHSAA 6A Sectional Semifinal at ST. JOHN, Ind.
LAKE CENTRAL (7-0)
Felix Garcia, 34-yard run 52-yard drive, 6 plays. 3:02 min. time of possession
(TOP). Derek Baldwin kick. 4:51 left.
2nd Qtr: CROWN POINT (7-7) Tysen Cazy, 16-yard pass from Will Pettit. 66-yard drive, 11 plays. 3:15 min. TOP. Sammy Brewer kick. 11:08 left.
CROWN POINT (15-7) David O’Toole, 80-yard pass from Will Pettit. 80-yard drive, 1 play. 0:12 min. TOP. Treston Logan, 2-point run. 0:50 left.
3rd Qtr: CROWN POINT (22-7) Matthew Walters, 9-yard run. 82-yard drive, 12 plays. 4:31 min. TOP. Sammy Brewer kick. 4:41 left.
4th Qtr: No scoring.
CROWN POINT (37 carries, 120 yards, one TD): Matthew Walters (HB) 11 carries, 27 yards, one TD; Davian Lira (HB) 16-47 yards; Will Pettit (QB) 6 carries, 18 yards; David O’Toole (WR) 3-25 yards.
LAKE CENTRAL (34 carries, 119 yards, one TD): Felix Garcia (HB) 18 carries, 80 yards, one TD; Mateo Cedeno (QB) 8 carries, 0 yards(2 sacks- minus-19 yards); Max Creasbaum (HB) 3 carries, 7 yards.)
CROWN POINT: Will Pettit (QB) 16 of 29, 231 yards; 2 TDs, one interception;
LC: Mateo Cedano (QB) 7 of 21, 57 yards; Curtis Gills (WR) 1 of 1, 5 yards.
CROWN POINT: David O’Toole (WR) 7-115 yards, TD; Ben Uran (TE) 2-18 yards; Tysen Cazy (WR) 5-58 yards, TD; Felix Meeks (TE) 1-28 yards; Davian Lira (HB) 1-2 yards.
LC: Ryan Mayton (WR) 3-17 yards; Diego Garcia (WR) 2-17 yards; Ricky Guerrero (HB) 1-19 yards; Curtis Gills (WR) 1-(minus-1) yard; Mateo Cedano (QB) 1-5 yards .
CP: 341 yards, 17 first downs, 2 turnovers (fumble, interception);
LC: 143 yards, 7 first downs, one turnover (interception).
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I never got the feeling that Crown Point was dominating Lake
Central in last Friday’s Class 6A Sectional 1 Semfinal playoff game.
But I never got the feeling that CP was going to lose either. They didn't. Crown Point used big play passing and enthusiastic defense to eliminate Lake Central 22-7 in the Class 6A Sectional 1 Semifinals.
Trailing 7-0 on a frosty November night, CP was able to lock down Lake Central’s offense and slowly pull away to advance to next Friday’s sectional championship game against Merrillville (9-1), a 27-20 winner over Jefferson in the other 6A Sectional 1 matchup.
After a 52-yard TD drive by LC on the Indians’ second possession, Crown Point limited Lake Central to just 91 yards of total offense for the rest of the game.
“We really expect that from our defense,” said CP coach Kevin Enright, who watched his team advance to the sectional final for the fourth year in a row.
“Our defense is built on stopping the run. We gave up a big run tonight, but really nothing else. When it comes playoff time, stopping the run is huge. Making teams one dimensional is certainly an advantage.
Lake Central jumped on CP early with a 52-yard drive and a 34-yard touchdown run by senior Felix Garcia.
It was not a new feeling. CP trailed Lowell 21-7 in week one before rallying for a 21-19 final score. They trailed Merrillville 21-3 in week three before coming back and losing in overtime. The Bulldogs trailed undefeated Valparaiso 14-0 in week six before tying that game going to the fourth quarter. CP fell behind Portage 7-0 in week five before rallying to win. The Bulldogs trailed LaPorte 7-0 in week seven before coming back to win.
Why the Bulldogs start so many games so badly is not something that’s obvious.
“That’s been our M.O. this year,” said Enright. “We start a game by falling behind. I don't know why. Sometimes our opponent is just really, really good. But sometimes we get in our own way. That’s on us. But it's a credit to our group that we have the resilience to fight through it. Crawl back into the game and get on top.”
Crown Point responded to being down seven points with a 66-yard TD drive and a 16-yard touchdown pass from junior quarterback Will Pettit to senior wide receiver Tysen Cazy.
The Bulldogs appeared to take the lead with 7:00 to go before halftime when Pettit found Cazy on a long strike down the home sidelines for what looked like a37-yard TD. But that go-ahead play was called back when it was ruled that Cazy stepped out of bounds running his route. The Bulldogs had to punt three plays later.
CP did take the lead in the final minute of the first half when they were able to isolate 6-foot-1 receiver David O’Toole against 5-foot-6 LC defensive back Jalen Wigley.
O’Toole took off down the visitors' sidelines and Pettit, who was 16 of 29 for 231 yards, dropped the pass over the defensive back to O’Toole for a runaway score and a 15-7 halftime lead.
CP junior halfback Mathew Walters scored on a 9-yard run with 4:41 left in the third quarter to put the game out of reach. As was the case in CP’s 10-0 regular season win at Lake Central in September, LC could not move the ball consistently on the CP defense. Lake Central ran the ball 27 times for 83 yards and LC quarterback Mateo Cedano was 7-of-24 passing.
On a night with temperatures in the upper 30s, much of the
second half was defense stopping offense on both sides. CP’s Noah Hollendonner
grabbed his third interception of the season with one minute to play to end the
final LC threat.
CP junior linebacker Calvin Pawlowski was credited with eight solo tackles. Pawlowski and Collin Flavin recorded quarterback sacks.
O’Toole might have had his best game of the season with seven pass receptions for 115 yards and 25 yards rushing on three carries.
Cazy caught his eighth TD of the season.
But Enright doesn't appreciate the drama of his boys coming from behind every week. That’s not a plan for facing arch-rival Merrillville (9-1) in the 6A Sectional 1 championship game this week.
“It (falling behind) is frustrating as a coach and as a group,” he said. “And if you look at the tape and analyze it. We make some stupid mistakes early. I don't know if it takes us a while to settle down.”
“Whether it's an assignment mistake, missing a block, or defensively, if we let a ball get over our heads. We blow a coverage. It's us a lot of times. We know it. We talk about it. But we still do it.”
Nobody from Crown Point or Merrillville has to search for a secret strategy for the upcoming title game. This will be the sixth meeting of the Bulldogs and Pirates in the last three years. In predicted bitterly cold weather, the game may become simple.
“Any time you get to this point we need to be able to run the football,” said Enright. Take care of the football and prevent big plays.”
DOG NOTES: CP’s win was their sixth in a row over Lake Central. In 2016, Crown Point topped LC 17-3 and 10-6.
CP isn't secretive about what they want to do in the passing game. The Bulldogs, like most teams, consistently split three wide receivers to try to get single coverage from the defense.
CP has tall receivers David O’Toole (6-1, 195), Tysen Cazy (6-3, 180) and Ben Uran (6-5, 215) and they try to get a size mismatch near the sidelines for a low-risk, high-reward deep pass.
“With David, Tysen or Ben Uran,” said Coach Kevin Enright, “Will (QB Will Pettit) knows that when we get a mismatch we’re going to try and take advantage of it.”