Times Sports Editor
For the second week in a row, the Northview Knights will face a winless team that comes to visit as Vincennes Lincoln comes calling with a 0-5 record.
The Alices are in a full blown rebuilding mode after the historic program had a great deal of success in the middle part of the decade, which could be attributed to a strong class that included former Purdue quarterback and current Indianapolis Colt, Curtis Painter.
Vincennes is coming off back-to-back three-win seasons and are undergoing a youth movement, which could be partially to blame for the winless start. Scoring points has been the most difficult factor for the Alices as they have averaged just four points per game while allowing more than 46 per contest. Twice Vincennes has been shutout, 68-0 to Heritage Hills in the season opener and again versus Mount Vernon (Posey), 32-0.
The schedule also hasn't been kind to Vincennes as they have losses to once beaten Boonville and Heritage Hills and undefeated Jasper.
On Friday the 4-1 Knights get a crack at Vincennes Lincoln and look to further the Alices losing skid.
Vincennes main starter at quarterback has been junior Jake Stone who has had minimal success, completing just 31-of-92 for just 229 yards with seven interceptions and only one touchdown. Sophomore Gunnar Hutchison has completed four-of-seven throws for 89 yards.
Stone did have some success in last year's 33-21 Northview win, throwing for 143 yards despite being intercepted three times.
On the ground, Vincennes hasn't had much more success as sophomore Aaron Odum has had the bulk of the carries with 58, but averages just 3.4 yards per carry. As a team, the Alices have just 222 yards on 131 carries while allowing the opposition to run roughshod. Vincennes opponents have rang up 1,264 yards on 185 carries, good for a 6.8 ypc. clip.
Vincennes is obviously missing the services of graduated speedster, Curtis Bouchie, who was the bulk of the offense and ran for three touchdowns and 121 yards last year against the Knights.
Senior J.P. Hammond is the leading Vincennes receiver with 10 grabs for 115 yards while Brendon Hardin has caught five passes for 80 yards and the lone receiving TD. Junior Blaize Thais has caught six passes, but for only 39 yards and Odum has seven receptions for 31 yards.
Northview counters with a high-powered attack that features a nasty combination of running and passing that hasn't been suppressed in five games this season.
Junior quarterback Trent Lancaster has been dynamic in throwing for 1,120 yards and 14 touchdowns while rushing for another 568 yards and eight TDs. Damon Hyatt has run for just shy of 300 yards on 49 carries and Drake Stevenson has been dynamic in rushing for 126 yards on just 17 carries while catching 23 passes for 384 yards and has five touchdowns.
The Knights also have a balanced receiving corp led by 28 receptions from Zac Niehaus, who has 375 yards and five scores. Tightend Jon Bradshaw has been money in the redzone, catching 21 passes for 211 yards and four touchdowns and has six two-point conversions.
On defense, the Knights will have a size advantage and line play will by especially important in limiting Vincennes drives.
Beau Judd (6'3, 275 lb.) is at strongside tackle for the Knights with Junior Hubbard (5'10, 220 lb.) lining up at weak side. Hubbard's speed has proved to be very valuable chasing plays laterally across the field. Taylor Pinnick and Brady Silvers have gathered experience over the first half of the season at defensive end along with freshman Aaron See. Pinnick also has a pair of fumble recoveries for the Knights, who have 10 total and have 18 takeaways, which includes eight interceptions.
Hyatt has three interceptions and Bradshaw, Hunter Robertson and Chance Talbot each have two picks apiece.
Northview shouldn't take Vincennes for granted despite a zero in the win column for the Alices. The Alices have been tested by some tough teams already and will be searching to get into the win column this evening. Kickoff is at 7 p.m. at Northview High School.