Equal parts suspense and thriller, the Knights, spurred on by their seniors who were honored before the game, Northview made sure their version had a happy ending.
The Vikings ran out to a 13-7 halftime lead, laying the foundation on their opening drive which went 14-plays and 75 yards to take a 7-0 lead. The Viking defense barely allowed Northview positive rushing yards over the first two quarters.
The lone first half highlight for the Knights was a 43-yard scoring pass from Caleb Whitman to Jered Timm but the Vikings held the momentum going into the locker room.
But it was the second half which turned into a horror story for the Vikings.
Northview made a statement by going eight plays and scoring on their opening drive which opened the floodgates for 40 unanswered points in a 40-13 victory.
Coming out of the locker room however, the Knights had a whole different look to them starting with that pivotal first drive.
With Trent Lancaster taking over at quarterback, the Knights got their running game fired up as Nick Lancaster rambled 34 yards over three straight running plays. Those runs set up a 12-yard score from Nathan Williams through the right side and the Knights suddenly had the lead and renewed life.
"We did a great job as a coaching staff at halftime making some adjustments," said head coach George Gettle. "Trent (Lancaster) gave us a spark and our lineman did a complete 180 and really knocked (West Vigo) off the ball. Hats off to them."
The defense stepped up to the plate as well.
After allowing 127 rushing yards in the first half, the Knights only allowed 40 yards on 15 carries in the second half.
The Vikings punted after four plays on their next drive and returned the ball back to the Knights' offense who was already licking their chops.
Nick Lancaster chopped off 13 yards on first down and Williams then powered through for a 23-yard gain on the next play. With the Vikings reeling, the Knights pounded out a first down on a run by Kade Baker which set up a 31-yard scoring pass from Trent Lancaster to Timm.
"We schemed them a lot after halftime, the (running) backs ran harder and the defense played great in the second half," said Gettle.
Suddenly leading 21-13, the Knights kept the pressure on the Vikings, not allowing a first down on either of their next two drives.
On the second, the Vikings punted, but the Knights returned the ball back to West Vigo's 17-yard line. Working with a short field, Williams would give the Knights a comfortable lead to start the fourth quarter when he ran in from 16 yards out for a 28-13 advantage.
Playing from behind, the Vikings were forced to go to the air, which isn't a strength.
West Vigo quarterback, Landon Keith, was one-for-10 in the second half and three straight incompletions on the Vikings' next drive turned the ball over on downs.
The Vikings were unable to make any inroads following a loss of six yards on a sack by the Knights and they punted once again.
Northview wasted little time in finding paydirt on their next drive as Wes Sorlie took off on the first play from scrimmage and bulled his way through for a 39-yard scoring run.
He would finish the scoring four minutes later with his second TD of the game on a 12-yard run.
Williams ran for 61 second half yards on seven carries for two scores and Sorlie had 65 yards on four carries for two touchdowns. Nick Lancaster tallied 54 second half yards as Northview rang up 200 rushing yards in the second half.
"This was absolutely a nice win on Senior Night," commented Gettle. "The parents did a great job of setting up and these seniors have been great, not losing to anyone in the conference for four years."
Before the game, the senior class consisting of, Nick Lancaster, Timm, Zach Kirby, Whitman, Jason Blackburn, Dylan Kruse, Ross Crooks, Tyler Coltharp, Derek Rose, Jared Staley, Nathan Disney, Adam Phipps, Brock Vanatti, Jason Hakman and Cody Crooks were honored.
The Knights have won 23 consecutive WIC conference games heading into next week's regular season finale with Brown County. The victory also guarantees the Knight at least a share of their fourth straight conference championship.
Northview 40, West Vigo 13
WV -- Landon Keith 1-yard run (Caleb Tilford kick), 5:01
WV -- Andy Jackson 3-yard run (kick failed), 7:05
Nv -- Caleb Whitman 43-yard pass to Jered Timm (Cody Crooks kick), 5:09
Nv -- Nathan Williams 12-yard run (Crooks kick), 8:47
Nv -- Trent Lancaster 31-yard pass to Timm (Crooks kick), 3:46
Nv -- Williams 16-yard run (Crooks kick), 9:27
Nv -- Wes Sorlie 39-yard run (kick failed), 4:29
Nv -- Sorlie 12-yard run (kick failed), :26.5
Rushing -- Northview: Baker 7-21, N.Lancaster 7-52, Whitman 7-0, Stevenson 1-(-1), T.Lancaster 2-(-3), Williams 7-61 2TD, Sorlie 4-65 2 TD; West Vigo: Jackson 11-72 TD, Keith 14-38 TD, Budd 10-59, Silcock 3-4, Burt 2-4.
Passing -- Northview: Whitman 4-15 119 yards TD, 2 Int., T.Lancaster 2-4 37 TD; West Vigo: Keith 4-18 67 yards, 0 TD, 0 Int.
Receiving -- Northview: Tim 4-130 2 TD, Baker 2-31. West Vigo: Mackey 1-15, Welch 2-29, Jackson 1-23.