Braves blast visiting Cougars 40-7 for conference win


North Harrison landed an early uppercut on Brownstown Central’s football team, then got nary a jab in thereafter. The result was a dominant 40-7 win for the Braves, who improved to 5-0 on the season and gained the inside track to the Mid Southern Conference title.

“I didn’t expect a score like that,” Brownstown head coach Reed May said. “I thought it would be a closer game. We talked before the game that the team that won tonight would be in control of the conference. Now, we control our own destiny.”

The Cougars took the opening kick off and, on the game’s second snap, broke through BC’s defensive line for a 64-yard Bryce Fessel touchdown run.


The points were the first allowed by Brownstown in just over eight quarters and marked the first deficit faced by BC since the third quarter of the Charlestown game three weeks ago.

“I was busy concentrating on the offense,” said May of the long NH run. “But with modern technology, we were able to take a look at the play on the iPad and find a fix.”

BC most certainly found the right adjustment, shutting out the Cougars over the remainder of the game and allowing just 40 yards on NH’s next 16 rush attempts.

North Harrison ended the game with 183 rush yards, well under their season average (329.5 yards).

In fact, the best indication of the Braves’ effectiveness was the Cougars’ passing game. NH entered Friday’s contest having thrown just five passes all season. BC forced them to throw 11 passes as they searched for answers.

“We’ve been playing well defensively all season,” May said. “We’ve got some good athletes on that side of the ball. And this year, we don’t have to play everyone both ways, which is helping.”

The defensive effort allowed Brownstown’s offense to find its way, especially the run game. The Braves scored 40 unanswered points while generating 13 runs of 10 or more yards and 324 rushing yards on 53 attempts.

Seniors Lane Zike and Chick Tiemeyer celebrated Senior Night by combining to score five touchdowns.

Zike accounted for three of the scores, getting Brownstown started with an eight-yard TD reception from quarterback Micah Sheffer. Zike added scoring runs of 26 and 14 yards to help BC pull away.

Tiemeyer, meanwhile, scored on runs of two and 28 yards. Preston Garrison rounded out Brownstown’s scoring with a one-yard TD run.

Zike led all BC runners with 114 yards on 18 carries, the first 100-yard game by a Brownstown back this season. Isiaah Engle put on a show early with his feet and finished with 74 yards on 11 attempts. Tiemeyer followed with 61 yards on five carries.

With the defense stout and the offense productive, North Harrison never had a chance. The Braves forced the Cougars to turn the ball over on downs twice, including on a fourth-and-1 stop, and punt four times. One of the punts was blocked by Owen Wischmeier.

Most devastating for NH were the three turnovers caused by Brave defenders. Grant Killey and Jack Pace each intercepted a pass, with Killey backing up his pick with a bruising 42-yard return. Ryan Branaman added a fumble recovery.

Isaac Hutchinson led BC with five tackles, including two for loss. Pace and Keetan Burcham-Jones each added a tackle for loss.

With its win, Brownstown sits atop the MSC standings and is the conference’s lone undefeated team. The Braves are seeking their 24th conference title.

Friday’s victory is BC’s sixth straight over NH since losing two of three games between 2015-17. The Braves have faced the Cougars 30 times with May as their head coach and have won 28 of those games, including 21 straight between 1993 and 2014.

With North Harrison vanquished, Brownstown now turns its attention to county rival Seymour. The Braves will have to make a metaphorical U-turn defensively to prepare for the potent Owls, who have amply demonstrated a prolific ability to throw the ball and score points throughout the season, a far cry from the run-first, run-second mentality of North Harrison.

“Ever since we started playing Seymour, it’s been a great game for us,” May said. “We use the game to prepare for the sectional since we don’t play the competition that Seymour does. It’s always a fun week. We’re expecting a great crowd over there. We’ll show up, try our best and see what happens.”

Since Jackson County’s two high school football teams rebooted their rivalry in 2007, Brownstown has a 9-7 series edge. Seymour, however, still holds the all-time upper hand with a 13-9 mark, thanks to a 6-0 record vs. Brownstown between 1966-71.

Last season, Owls scored a late touchdown to claim a 28-24 win, ending BC’s three-game series win streak.

North Harrison (4-1);7;0;0;0;—;7

Brownstown Central (5-0);7;14;19;0;—;40

First quarter

NH-Bryce Fessel 64 run (Joshua Waynescott kick), 11:15

BC-Lane Zike 8 pass from Micah Sheffer (Bryce Peak kick), 5:30

Second quarter

BC-Chick Tiemeyer 2 run (Peak kick), 8:34

BC-Zike 26 run (Peak kick), 3:46

Third quarter

BC-Zike 14 run (kick failed), 10:52

BC-Preston Garrison 1 run (kick failed), 8:37

BC-Tiemeyer 28 run (Peak run), :20

Fourth quarter


Rushing: Zike 18-114, Isiaah Engle 11-74, Tiemeyer 5-61, Greg Hutcheson 2-40, Garrison 6-22, Evan Stahl 4-16, Sheffer 2-9, Grayson Vague 1-7, Trevor Branaman 1-1, Brock Dean 1-(-4), Jaxson Johnson 2-(16), Team 53-324.

Passing: Sheffer 3 for 7, 54 yards, 1 touchdown, 3 interceptions.

Receiving: Hudson Fritz 1-39, Zike 1-8, Tiemeyer 1-7.

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