Owls head to Franklin to begin postseason


After a week off to prepare, the Seymour Owls are set to begin their postseason journey on Friday against the Franklin Grizzly Cubs.

It’s been five years since these two teams have squared off with the Grizzly Cubs winning their Aug. 22, 2014 matchup by 54 points the last time they met.

Entering the postseason, the Owls are the only team in a loaded Sectional No. 14 with a losing record, but don’t let that 4-5 mark fool you, the Owls are much better than that indicates. 

The Owls started the year on a tear, winning their first four games for the first time since 2001.

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And then the winning streak halted.

Seymour went on to lose their next five games, but all of them were by a touchdown or less. 

They’ve hung tough with good competition throughout the year, especially to close out the season against Hoosier Hills Conference juggernaut Columbus East and rising Floyd Central.

Each of those game was lost by a touchdown and each contest was available for the Owls to take for the win.  

Three things have plagued the Owls in their losses: Turnovers, stalled drives and not getting stops.

The Olympians were able to hang on to a 14-7 win on Oct. 11 by running out the final eight minutes of the game. Seymour coach Mike Kelly has stated at different points this season he’s wanted his defense to get more three and outs. 

Defensive stops will be hard to come by for the Owls against a Grizzly Cubs team that is averaging just over 424 yards of total offense a game. Their season-high output (526 yards) came in a Week 6 showdown with gun-slinging Mooresville. 

Against the Highlanders, the Owls were the aggressors in the first half, but back-to-back drives in the first quarter were halted by holding penalties. Two turnovers also hampered the Owls chances to cut into the Floyd Central lead until late in the game when the Owls mounted a comeback. 

Chief concern for the Owls’ defense is going to be Franklin quarterback Drew Byerly, who has thrown for just over 1,500 yards this season, 16 touchdowns and just two interceptions.

His completion percentage is 50 percent for the year and is averaging just over 11 yards a completion. 

However, his arm isn’t the only thing to worry about.

Byerly is also the team’s second-leading rusher with 1,048 yards and 19 touchdowns — a team high.

While he throws for 167 yards a game, he also rushes for 116.

That’s similar to what the Owls have wanted to get out of their quarterback Brendan Smith, who has also completed close to 50 percent of his throws and is the team’s second-leading rusher behind Chandler Drummond. 

A balance like that will be key if the Owls are to have any success on Friday.

Seymour has been fairly one-dimensional in most contests, rushing for many more yards than they throw for.

Two Fridays ago against Floyd Central was one of their more balanced attacks in recent memory, throwing the ball for just under 16 yards an attempt and rushing the ball 43 times. 

Though a heavy-emphasis on the run game has been what’s led the Owls to victory this year and has also allowed them to keep the ball away from prolific offenses.

Seymour’s offense ranks seventh in Class 5A for rushing attempts (358) and 10th in the class for rushing yards (2,109). 

Franklin, too, likes to run the ball a lot having ran it 362 times for 2,305 yards.

New Palestine and Whiteland, the other two teams in the sectional, rank Nos. 1 and 4 in rushing yards in the class with 2,787 and 2,358, respectively. 

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Hoosier Hills Conference standings


Columbus East;6-0;7-2

Floyd Central;5-1;7-2

New Albany;3-3;4-5

Bedford North Lawrence;3-3;3-6



Jennings County;1-5;3-6


Mid-Southern Conference


Brownstown Central;8-0;9-0

Silver Creek;7-1;8-1



North Harrison;3-5;3-5



Corydon Central;1-7;2-7

Eastern (Pekin);0-8;0-9

Class 5A Sectional 14



New Palestine;1-0;9-0



Class 3A Sectional 31



Brownstown Central;5-0;9-0



Franklin County;2-2;5-4




Jackson County leaders



Smith (S);54;121;940;10;9

Thompson (BC);28;47;560;6;0



Henderson (S);23;365;15.9;3

D. Vehslage (S);13;334;25.7;5

Cope (BC);10;253;25.3;2

K. Tiemeyer (BC);7;131;18.7;1

Brown (BC);6;118;19.7;2

Barker (S);6;100;16.7;1

Kruse (S);1;33;33;0

Elmore (S);3;22;7.3.0

Lowe (S);2;10;5.0.0



Thompson (BC);139;1249;9.0;15

Drummond (S);173;1068;6.2;8

Smith (S);114;538;4.7;7

Walker (BC);52;437;8.4;3

Greathouse (S);56;415;7.4;4

Brown (BC);30;303;10.1;1

K. Tiemeyer (BC);31;195;6.3;2

Hines (BC);24;137;5.7;2

Huber (BC);24;112;4.7;1



Pennington (S);46;64;110

Hines (BC);41;67;108

Corwin (S);37;61;98

Weddell (S);26;42;68

Walker (BC);18;37;55

Schroeder (S);18;31;49

James (S);24;21;45

Huber (BC);17;21;38

J. Tiemeyer (BC);7;24;31

Neal (S);11;23;34

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What: Seymour (4-5) at Franklin (7-2)

When: 7 p.m. Friday

Radio: 92.7 NASH Icon

Where: Shireman Field 

Last meeting: Franklin, 61-7, Aug. 22, 2014

Series past 35 years: Franklin, 7-5 


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