Brownstown wins football opener


The 7 p.m. kickoff at Blevins Memorial Stadium couldn’t come soon enough for the Brownstown Central football team — even though it was a week late.

Rather than a second straight oh-no postponement when rumblings of thunderstorm warnings provided a scare, the Braves’ “second” opening day came off smoothly.

So two weekends into the Indiana high school football season, Brownstown Central is at last 1-0.

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There was enough rain to provoke spectators into opening umbrellas some of the time, but the intermittent rainbows might as well have been a commentary on Brownstown’s overpowering running game.

The delayed-gratification victory, a 42-7 smothering of Charlestown, was a testimonial to Brownstown’s manhandling blocking on the offensive line and the equally dominating tackling on the defensive front.

On offense, the rushing game produced just shy of 400 yards. Quarterback Kiernan Tiemeyer collected 122 of them.

While fans were limited to a fraction of capacity and were forced to wear face masks and sit in social distancing fashion in the stands due to the COVID-19 pandemic, it was more satisfying than not playing at all. Last week, instead of opening at Corydon Central, that school got late word of a positive virus test and the game was called off.

This replacement opener was Brownstown’s answer to the last game of 2019, a November loss at sectionals, 7-6, to this same Charlestown team, and it was on some players’ minds ahead of time.

The Braves never trailed in this game, though Charleston did tie matters at 7-7 before Brownstown made up for its one notable mistake, a second-quarter long touchdown pass.

Except for that, Brownstown ruled in every way.

Tiemeyer, a junior, was shifty going to his right early, then up the middle later, spinning out of the grasp of tacklers. His elusiveness gave the Braves a 7-0 lead on a 30-yard dash.

A TD pass from Pirates quarterback Chase Benner to receiver Matthew Henning for 34 yards evened the score, but as time ticked on that seemed more like a fluke than a challenge. Charlestown managed just 12 yards rushing in the first half and never sustained a drive.

Less than three-and-a-half minutes later, Brownstown really made its point when Eli Wischmeier’s interception covering 15 yards deep in Charlestown territory gave the Braves the lead back at 14-7.

Charlestown never really rallied again.

The rest of the scoring belonged to Brownstown.

Senior Jayden Steinkamp rushed for 112 yards. Lucas Hines rushed for 93 yards all, in the third quarter.

Brownstown scored its touchdowns on power running, either up the middle, or occasionally breaking tackles or darting around end.

The interception was perhaps the mental crusher for Charlestown, but the running game was a steady drumbeat, keeping the clock ticking as Brownstown flexed its muscles and marched downfield.

Steinkamp put the Braves ahead 21-7 on a 10-run where he stutter-stepped through defenders on a nifty fake.

Once Tiemeyer gathered his second TD to make it 27-7, there was no prospect of Charlestown making a comeback. Hines, who wasn’t really involved in the offense early, was the key man in the third quarter, fresh legs, and it was only appropriate he scored six points to up the lead to 34-7.

Copper Wolka kicked extra points like clockwork most of the night, but missed one and so when Brownstown added a final touchdown from Jake Pauley in the fourth quarter, it made sense for the Braves to add a two-point conversion

The rest of the fourth quarter was a showcase for back-up runners who not only ran the ball, but ran the clock out.

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