Kokomo Tribune; Kokomo, Indiana

Sports

October 24, 2013

A tough bracket

Western, NW join sectional with 7 winning teams

(Continued)

“Every time you step up in class, the game is a little faster, the players are a little bigger. Everything changes a little bit,” he said. “It definitely will be a challenge for us, but it’s one that we look forward to. Everyone likes tournament time. If you can’t get excited for this time of year, then I’m not sure why you’re involved in football.”

The first round is Friday. Western hosts Mississinewa while Northwestern plays at Blackford (1-8). The following are looks at those two games.

OLE MISS (6-3) AT WESTERN (8-1)

The Panthers enter the sectional on a roll after beating perennial rivals Hamilton Heights and Cass the last two weeks to snag a share of the MIC title.

“I think we are playing good football, but I think that among the coaching staff, we feel we can play better and we will need to definitely do that going forward,” Andrews said.

Western and Mississinewa are meeting in the postseason for the fourth straight year. The three previous meetings all came in sectional semifinals with Western winning all three.

The Panthers beat the Indians 47-26 last year, which was Andrews’ first as Western’s skipper.

“I think they’re similar to the way they were a year ago,” Andrews said. “They have a potent offense with a huge offensive line and a very good running back. Their quarterback might be as accurate as any quarterback that we’ve played this year. They have skilled and very tall receivers. So, their offense is very good.”

The teams had two common opponents during the regular season, Eastbrook and Maconaquah. Western beat Eastbrook 24-11 in Week 2 and lost to Maconaquah 28-18 in Week 5. Ole Miss drilled Maconaquah 42-9 in Week 2 and lost to Eastbrook 38-26 in Week 7.

The Indians average 45.7 points per game. They closed the regular season with a pair of 60-point explosions — a 68-42 victory over Madison-Grant and a 62-27 rout of Oak Hill.

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