Kokomo Tribune; Kokomo, Indiana

Sports

October 6, 2012

Kats find footing

Kokomo rushes for 364 yards, 23 first downs to whip Marion

(Continued)

Kokomo —

After stopping Marion with a three-and-out in the first possession of the second half, Kokomo took the lead quickly. A four-play drive was finished off by an eight-yard surge to the right by Baker and the Kats led for the first time, 18-14. Kokomo then forced a fumble on the kickoff and took possession again.

This time, it took five plays for the Kats to score. Quarterback Tayler Persons ran in from 13 yards, riding the last several yards inside a pack of Giants and Wildkats as his blockers pushed the scrum over the line for a 24-14 lead.

“Them scoring, and us fumbling the ball right back to them, that just sucked the life right out of us,” Sehy said.

The Wildkats scored on their next two possessions., finding the end zone with a 12-yard run by Baker and a 13-yard run by Michael Copeland to push the lead to a commanding 40-14 with 7:31 left in the game.

Baker was particularly effective, getting loose outside to amass 144 yards on 17 carries. Copeland ran for 123 yards on 21 rushes, and Persons was involved more than usual in the ground game, running for 94 yards on 13 carries. He also had Kokomo’s first TD, a 10-yarder to knot the game at 6-all in the first quarter.

“[Marion’s defenders] were pinching and knifing so hard, and with the field conditions what they were, we couldn’t get our off-tackle plays, we couldn’t get any traction and movement,” Colby said, discussing adjustments that gave the Kats room to run. “[Instead] we just hit the edge and we were content with doing what we had to do to move the ball. They never really stopped us. We never punted.”

Kokomo rattled off five scores in a row.

“They ran the fullback [Copeland] a little more effectively in the second half after they wore our defensive line down, and kept the chains moving with him,” Sehy said. “They just do what they do, and they’re good at it.”

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