Northview wins tale of two halves
For Northview and host North Putnam, it was most distinctly a tale of two halves in their battle for Western Indiana Conference West Division supremacy.
North Putnam dominated the first half, as quarterback Maverick Summers tossed five touchdown passes. However, two of his passes were intercepted — four overall in the game, his first four of the season — both resulting in Northview touchdowns.
Northview then totally dominated the second half, with their defense picking up the pace drastically in conjunction with its offense kicking into high gear.
As it turned out, those two Northview TD interception returns in the first half proved to be the difference, enabling the Knights to escape with a 50-35 victory and move into first place in the WIC West on Friday.
“Obviously defensively, that was the worst we played all season in that first half,” Northview head coach Mark Raetz said. “Offensively, we were struggling to get things going until right before halftime.
“Halftime, we did have a pretty heated discussion, but I think our kids responded very well. The second half was some of the best football we’ve played for a while.”
Just the opposite reaction came from North Putnam head coach Sam Carnes concerning his team’s second-half performance.
“We didn’t come out ready to play in the second (half),” Carnes said. “We thought the game was over and credit to Northview for fighting. When you play a good opponent, you can’t stop scoring points.
“(Northview) did a good job changing things up at halftime and obviously outcoached me in the second half. Here we are.”
The first half was unusual to say the least, as North Putnam possessed the ball seven times and a touchdown resulted in each instance — five for North Putnam, two for Northview on the interception returns.
Northview jumped ahead 7-0 on a Parker Jordan 20-yard TD interception return, on the first pass of the game by Summers.
However, the Cougars scored on their next three possesions, TD passes to Scott Proctor twice and Lucius Alexander for a 21-7 lead just 12 seconds into the second quarter.
Again, Northview sliced the lead, this time to 21-14, on a Braxton Sampson 10-yard inteception return of an errant Summers pass just over three minutes later.
North Putnam’s offense returned to form to end the half, however, with Summers connecting on throwing scores to Aidan Baker and Kalib Lawrence.
Northview finally got its offense untracked late in the half, getting four of its five first downs in its final drive, culminating in quarterback Keegan Garrison scoring on a three-yard run with 1:24 left.
However, North Putnam marched down the field 80 yards to score as time expired to lead 35-21 at intermission.
Whatever was said in the Northview lockerroom certainly woke up their both their offense and defense units in the second half, as the Knights dominated 29-0.
Summers was intercepted twice in the third quarter. Northview responded with a 74-yard swing pass which resulted in a touchdown from Garrison to Brylar Metz, then Steven Thomas booted a 25-yard field goal to get within 35-30 after three periods.
In the fourth quarter, following a high snap on a North Putnam punt handing the Knights the ball at their opponent’s 19-yard line, the Knights cashed in with a 7-yard TD pass from Garrison to Josh Wright to assume a 36-35 lead.
The Knights kept the pedal to the metal down the stretch as Korbin Allen scored on a 64-yard run and Garrison hit paydirt from three yards out for a second time.
Northview is now 4-2 overall and 3-0 in the WIC West, while North Putnam (5-1, 2-1 WIC) dropped from the ranks of the unbeaten.
NV — Parker Jordan 20 interception return (Steven Thomas kick), 10:10
NPut — Scott Proctor 15 pass from Maverick Summers (Brayden Polley kick), 5:24
NPut — Lucius Alexander 26 pass from Summers (Polley kick), 3:18
NPut — Proctor 1 pass from Summers (Polley kick), 11:48
NV — Braxton Sampson 10 interception return (Thomas kick), 8:30
NPut — Aidan Baker 15 pass from Summers (Polley kick), 7:06
NV — Keegan Garrison 3 run (Thomas kick), 1:24
NPut — Kalib Lawrence 12 pass from Summers (Polley kick), :00
NV — Brylar Metz 74 pass from Garrison (kick failed), 7:38
NV — Thomas FG-25, 4:16
NV — Josh Wright 7 pass from Garrison (run failed)
NV — Korbin Allen 64 run (Thomas kick), 6:07
NV — Garrison 3 run (Thomas kick), 2:10
First downs — Northview 15, North Putnam 21; Rushes-yards — Northview 41-232, North Putnam 23-157; Passing yards — Northview 137, North Putnam 212; C-A-I — Northview 8-16-0, North Putnam 17-38-4; Punts-avg. — Northview 5-29.2, North Putnam 2-22.0; Fumbles-lost — Northview 2-1, North Putnam 0-0; Penalties-yards — Northview 10-57, North Putnam 8-64.
Rushing — Northview, Allen 22-167, Garrison 18-64, Metz 1-1. North Putnam, Baker 12-130, Summers 8-53, Lawrence 1-2, Gunner Burress 1-0, Team 1-(minus 28).
Passing — Northview, Garrison 8-16-0 137. North Putnam, Summers 17-38-4 212.
Receiving — Northview, Allen 2-8, Wright 2-16, Noah Minor 1-10, Metz 3-103. North Putnam, Lawrence 5-67, Baker 4-32, Proctor 4-54, Alexander 4-59.
Next — Northview (4-2, 3-0 in Western Indiana Conference) hosts Greencastle, while North Putnam (5-1, 2-1 WIC) travels to West Vigo next Friday.