Braves get back on track with road victory at Silver Creek

SELLERSBURG — The Braves brought their running shoes Friday night and finally got back on a winning track.

Brownstown Central’s football team racked up a season-high 496 yards on the ground and easily outdistanced Mid-Southern Conference rival Silver Creek, 41-21.

Junior Isiaah Engle had a break-out game, running for 216 yards and two touchdowns on just eight carries to pace the Braves (5-3). Engle had runs of 20, 34, 56 and 70 yards. He added another 53 yards on three kickoff returns to enjoy a career-best effort.

“I felt good all night,” Engle said. “Our blockers were blocking really well. Every time I got the ball, there was a huge hole and I just ran.”

Head coach Reed May said having senior quarterback Carson Darlage available again to run the ball was a key to Engle’s night.

“Carson is healthy again and that opened up a lot tonight,” May said. “Our offense is geared to a running quarterback like him. It was good to see the run game perform like it did. Engle certainly had a big night.”

Darlage ended with 95 yards and two touchdowns on 19 carries.

Brownstown’s previous high mark for rushing yards this season was 389 in a win at Corydon. The Braves were within sniffing distance of the all-time BC record of 528 rush yards, set in 2000 against West Washington.

Engle got BC going in the second quarter with a 56-yard TD run. Darlage followed with a 12-yard scoring run, and Engle unleashed his 70-yard touchdown jaunt to put the Braves in front 20-7 at halftime.

Gregory Hutcheson, Adam Wayt and Darlage scored on short runs in the second half to keep Silver Creek (3-5) at arm’s length.

Friday’s win provided much needed relief for Brownstown, which carried a rare two-game losing streak into the contest. In his 30 years as BC head coach, May has never experienced a three-game skid and has seen back-to-back losses just three times.

“Under the circumstances, with all of our injuries and being banged up, we wanted to come out and get a win tonight,” May said. “We’ve never lost three in a row, so it was good to get back on track.”

The victory effort wasn’t perfect. Silver Creek’s three touchdowns was a result of Brownstown mistakes.

A BC fumble led to a 57-yard Dragon return for a score, another TD was aided by a BC penalty on a Silver Creek fourth-and-4, and a blown pass coverage enabled a 68-yard touchdown pass.

But Brownstown’s defense was solid when it mattered most. The Braves denied Silver Creek on its four other attempts to convert on fourth down, including one stop inside BC’s five yard line.

Keetan Burcham-Jones, Jaren Cunningham and Quentin Tiemeyer each had a tackle for loss. Cunningham was tough in pass coverage, breaking up three Silver Creek passes. Burcham-Jones also had a key second-quarter sack.

All in all, it was the kind of performance the Braves needed.

“This is big as we’re coming into the sectional,” Engle said. “We needed to get back to a good mindset and get back on a roll.”