PLYMOUTH – It was a fight to the end but for Plymouth it was too much Andrew McCormick, too often as East Noble put the Rockies out of sectional football play with a 40-22 win.
The junior quarterback for the Knights threw for 293 yards and five touchdowns and ran for 87 and one more as the one man wrecking crew was able to give his team a win over the Rockies. While the East Noble defense had trouble solving the Plymouth running game, they gave their offense enough stops to take the win and move on to a sectional title fight with NorthWood.
“Their quarterback was the difference,” said Plymouth coach John Barron. “Anytime they wanted to get positive yardage he took the ball and did what he wanted to do.”
While the Rockies offense put up two masterful scores in the first quarter East Noble answered with two scores of their own on just four plays.
“The two early touchdowns were too easy but after that I thought we settled in,” said Plymouth head coach John Barron. “We felt really good about our offense. We got after them early and moved the ball the way we’ve wanted to move the ball the last month. Not that we were surprised to be scoring points in the first half but it was a different feel for us because our defense has been so sound and our offense has struggled so much and it’s a tribute to our coaches and our kids getting ready to play.”
In spite of the early success of the East Noble offense the Plymouth defense would respond and at the half break the Rockies were only one score back at 28-22, after Cole Filson was able to push across a score as time expired in the first half.
“It’s a different feel playing these teams we don’t play during the regular season,” said Barron. “I think you saw a style of football Northern Lakes Conference versus the northeast part of the state there was a lot of passing game by them, a lot of shovel passes, similar to NorthWood but I thought we really had the upper hand on offense with 200 yards rushing at halftime we did what we wanted to do.”
At half the Rockie defense would make adjustments.
“They are a handful to deal with but I thought in the second half we settled in a little bit,” said Barron. “Really all I told our defense at halftime was to get us two stops and I thought we could make it a tighter game.”
And it was that. The Knights were able to push across a score given the short field after a fourth down try that fell short by the Rockies.
“It was fourth and two and a half and we went for it,” said Barron. “I just felt like we had to keep the momentum going and they made a stop and then on their series they throw a back corner fade on fourth down and we just don’t find the ball quick enough. We got them to fourth down and who knows? We knock that ball down and it could have been a different ball game.”
“Tonight I was proud of our kids how hard they played just the effort that we gave on both sides of the ball,” said Barron. “This class has shown an amazing resilience dealing with the things they’ve had to deal with. The way they’ve led the kids all spring and summer. We’ve changed some schemes and sometimes when you do that you lose kids and we didn’t. That’s a credit to them.
“There’s a lot of different kids in that class, a big mix of kids. Everyone was accepting of one another and they played hard every night. We played hard and fast and smart every Friday. They hung in there.”
The Rockies end the year at 5-6.
Score by Quarters
Plymouth 14 8 0 0 – 22
E. Noble 14 14 6 6 – 40
P – TD Cole Filson 2 Yd Run (Jeremy Drudge Kick No Good)
EN – TD Trey Bruce 51 Yd Pass FromAndrew McCormick (Kick)
P – TD Braxton Bennitt 15 Yd Run (Cole Filson Run For Two-Point Conversion)
EN – TD Dylan Hunley 52 Yd Pass FromAndrew McCormick (Kick)
Second Quarter PHS ENHS
EN – TD Kaiden Harshberger 16 Yd Pass From Andrew McCormick (Kick)
EN – TD Andrew McCormick 2 Yd Run (Kick)
P – TD Cole Filson 1 Yd Run (Two-Point Conversion)
EN – TD Dylan Hunley 7 Yd Pass FromAndrew McCormick (Kick No Good)
P – TD Dylan Hunley 25 Yd Pass FromAndrew McCormick (Kick No Good)
Rushing – (Plymouth 52-248) T. McMillen 22-116, B. Bennitt 6-44 TD, B. Nixon 7-34, C. Filson 11-32 2 TD, C. Schuler 7-22. (E. Noble 22-108) McCormick 15-87 TD, Erwin 4-20.
Passing – Filson 2-7, 14 yards, McCormick 22-30, 293 yards 5 TD.
Receiving – D. Hunley 6-105 3TD, N. Nixon 1-16.
Tackles – Drudge 15.