Glenn stays in NSC hunt with win over Culver
CULVER — John Glenn’s football team savored its 28-13 Northern State Conference win at Culver Community for about a nanosecond Friday night.
With news of Bremen’s 27-13 win over Jimtown — the Jimmies’ first NSC loss of the season — the Falcons quickly looked ahead to next week’s regular-season finale with the Lions. A win at unbeaten Bremen would give the Falcons a share of the league crown.
Glenn faced a similar situation last year, but with standout running back Josh Anderson banged up, failed to capitalize.
“We must be living right, because we’ve got a second chance,” Glenn head coach Justin Bogunia, whose team’s sole loss this season came in a heartbreaker against Jimtown, said. “Either way after the Jimtown game I was going to have to play psychologist; we were either going to be world beaters or crushed.
“Our guys did a good job being mature about losing to Jimtown,” he added. “I don’t think I’ll even have to worry about practice. I think our seniors know they’ve got a second chance and will lead practice this week. Last year we went into the Bremen game with Josh injured and our backs against the wall. This year we’re healthy.”
Against the Cavs, the healthy Anderson, now a senior, rushed for 171 yards and finished Glenn’s first three possessions of the game with touchdown runs of 2, 69, and 2 yards respectively as the Falcons grabbed a 21-7 lead with 8:07 left in the first half.
“Early in the game it seemed like they were one step ahead of us,” Culver head coach Andy Thomas said. “Then our kids adjusted and handled themselves well and hung in there. We needed to make a play early, but we just couldn’t get off the field. Glenn is an outstanding team, and I’m very proud of the way our kids played.”
Three of those early plays included two first-half near sacks that Glenn quarterback Tom Knape somehow evaded and connected with tight end Charlie Dreessen for positive yardage, as well as a Culver encroachment on a fourth-and-4 from the Culver 8.
Also for the Falcons, Trevor Duff tacked on 113 rushing yards in 14 tries, including a 32-yard scoring run to put the Falcons up 28-7 with 7:43 left in the third quarter.
“We have a middle running game that you have to be accountable for,” Bogunia said. “But if teams go to the middle then Trevor Duff is going to eat up a lot of yards to the outside. Our other guys stepped up. Tom Knape and Charlie Dreessen made some big plays.”
For Culver, senior running back Kevin Hogan churned out 165 yards on 24 totes, and linebacker John Ahlenius, powered by a number of successful blitzes, finished with 10 tackles
Meanwhile, senior Cole Flora scored on a 20-yard option pitch — from quarterback Collin Stevens — down the left sideline for the Cavs to knot the score at 7-7 with 3:47 left in the opening quarter.
“Against a team like that you are worried that after they score to start the game that it will snowball,” Thomas said. “For our kids to score right away was huge. It gave them some confidence.
“They’re not going to let you give it to the fullback all game,” he added. “The quarterback needs to make big plays, and that includes pitching it to the edges.”
Stevens hooked up with senior Sam Hissong on an 8-yard fourth-and-goal situation to finish off the night’s scoring with five minutes left.
Defensively, the Falcons recovered a pair of crucial third-quarter Culver fumbles — the first by Dreessen, the second created by lineman Ryan Williams at the Glenn 5 at the end of a 13-yard Hogan run.
“When you look at the scoreboard now, those turnovers proved to be pretty key,” Bogunia said. “A lot of that is we teach our defense to be aggressive. Those fumbles weren’t the offense putting the ball on the ground, it was because of a big hit. We took those turnovers.”
The Falcons eventually converted Dreessen’s takeaway into Duff’s touchdown, while the second turnover effectively sealed the outcome.
“We’ve got to take care of the football,” Thomas said. “There’s no excuse for a fumble. Nobody feels worse than the kid who put it on the ground. He’d just made several, tough, tough runs. He’s a great football player.”
The Falcons head to Bremen next week, while Culver travels to LaVille.
• JOHN GLENN 28,
CULVER COMMUNITY 13
Score by quarters
Glenn: 14 7 7 0 — 28
Culver: 7 0 0 7 — 13
JG — Josh Anderson 2 run (Charlie Dreessen kick), 5:36
C — Cole Flora 20 run (Collin Stevens kick), 3:47.
JG — Anderson 69 run (Dreessen kick), 2:12
JG — Anderson 1 run (Dreessen kick), 8:07.
JG — Trevor Duff 32 run (Dreessen kick), 7:43.
C — Sam Hissong 8 pass from Stevens (kick failed), 5:01.
Rushing: 54 carries for 334 yards (Anderson 26-171, Duff 14-113, Knape 8-32, Derek Hiler 6-18.
Passing: Knape 4-6, 56 yards
Receiving: Dreessen 3-42, Anthony Eldridge 1-14.
First downs: 17
Rushing: 41 carries for 218 yards (Kevin Hogan 24-165, Flora 4-29, Hissong 5-17, James Dulin 3-4, Stevens 4-2, Tucker Schultz 1-1).
Passing: Stevens 4-8, 40 yards
Receiving: Hissong 2-26, Flora 2-14.
First downs: 14
Records: Glenn 7-1 (5-1 NSC), Culver 4-4 (3-3 NSC).