It’s not often that you get to avenge a loss from earlier in the season.
However, that’s the position the Seymour team finds themselves for the second year in a row.
The Owls lost to Silver Creek at home in the opening game of the 2015 football season, then went to Sellersburg and topped the Dragons in the first round of the sectional.
Silver Creek defeated Seymour 29-16 in the opening game of this season, and at 7 p.m. Friday at Bulleit Stadium the Owls will try to repeat their tournament success of a year ago.
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“It shows it can be done,” Shattuck said. “We’ve got to execute the game plan and prove that we’ve made the improvements. It’s not too many times you get to avenge a loss in a football season, and this is one of those rare opportunities that we want to take advantage of.”
The Owls carry a six-game winning streak and a 6-3 record into the sectional, while the Dragons are 5-4.
“In the big scheme of things, the win against Floyd Central was so big because of the quality of the opponent,” Shattuck said.
Seymour and Floyd tied for second in the Hoosier Hills Conference with records of 5-2. The Owls won that game 36-35.
Shattuck said another key win during the regular season was a 34-32 thriller against Brownstown Central.
“We had a huge win in the Jackson Bowl against a really good Brownstown team that is 8-1,” Shattuck said. “The expectation of winning over there is just hard to overcome if you’re their opponent. To win at their field, however you win, by 1 or 20, you’ve got to feel good about that.
“We’ve got all that momentum and we’re cruising into the sectional.”
The Owls are averaging 33.9 points per game and are allowing 34.2, while the Dragons average 32 and allow 18.7 per contest.
Shattuck said he has seen his team improve on offense, defense and special teams throughout the season.
“It’s hard to get better in all phases every single game,” he said. “Overall, it’s a clear ascension. We’re improving as a team as the season progresses. Each week you’re playing a different team, a different opponent who has different strengths, different weaknesses.
“We’ve won six games in a row; we’ve won in different ways. At the end of the day for six weeks in a row we’ve won the line of scrimmage. That’s really hard to do. When you win the line of scrimmage, you’re going to win a lot more than you lose. That’s something I’m really pleased with.
Seymour has averaged 40.6 ppg and allowed 32.3 during its winning streak.
“The offensive line is our best unit, the most consistent unit on our football team,” Shattuck said. “We’ve gone to this two tight end, goal line that’s been very successful in recent weeks. It’s really nice to be able to go to that if teams are doing a good job of taking away our spread option stuff.”
With the success on the O-line, the Owls have opened up their offense.
“It allows us to find match ups,” Shattuck siad. ‘If a team is big, strong and can take away that goal line stuff we’re going to try and spread them out and find alleys around the ball and throw when we have to. If a team is scattered and fast and tries to take away our perimeter stuff we’re going to get in our goal line package and try to move them off the ball. I feel like we’re becoming an increasingly difficult team to defend.”
Shattuck said a big concern for his team is containing the Dragons’ Jacob Garrett, a 6-2, 239-pound junior running back.
“He’s strong, powerful, and can run,” Shattuck siad. “We’ve got to know where he is at all times.”
The Owls will be without leading tackler Todd Kiewitt, who suffered a knee injury in the Jennings County game and will have surgery following the season.
Neither Zach Carpenter or Alex Holt played against the Dragons in the earlier game because of suspensions.
“That was Week 1; this is Week 10, and I think every team is a little different,” Shattuck said. “It’s a different game. We made a lot of mistakes. We feel this is another opportunity for us to prove, and not just talk about what ifs. We’re a much better team than we were earlier.
“I think the biggest thing we need to do is establish the line of scrimmage. We have to win the battle at the line of scrimmage on both sides of the ball. Both teams are trying to establish the run. If we control the line of scrimmage on both sides of the ball that puts us in a very advantageous position to come out on top.”
The Owls hope to find more consistency through the air moving forward.
“Alan (Perry) is playing well, (but) we have to get a little better in the passing game — a little more consistent in the passing game,” Shattuck siad. “That will come with practice and things like that. Our slots, Jackson Morris and Nathan O’Mara, are so versatile because they’re receivers in our base offense, but they can run the football and that makes it really nice for us. I don’t have to sub guys out.”
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What: Silver Creek (5-4) at Seymour (6-3)
When: 7 p.m. Friday
Where: Bulleit Stadium
Radio: 92.7 Nash Icon
Last outing: Seymour def. Madison 36-22, Silver Creek def. Scottsburg 41-7.
Most recent meeting: Silver Creek won 29-16 on Aug. 19, 2016.
Series past 30 years: Silver Creek 2-1.