Kokomo Tribune; Kokomo, Indiana

Sports

November 1, 2013

Football previews

Area football teams face tough sectional semifinal matchups.

(Continued)

LCC is led by QB Ty Preston, who is 191 of 313 passing for 2,322 yards, 19 TDs and and six interceptions this season. Joe Smith leads the Knights on the ground with 162 carries for 865 yards and nine TDs, while Preston’s favorite target has been Jackson Anthrop, who has 68 grabs for 363 yards and three TDs.

TRI-CENTRAL AT SHERIDAN

This is the big one. Bigger than two weeks ago when Tri-Central topped Sheridan for the first time in 20 seasons. That game validated the strides the Trojans have taken the last five years since George Gilbert took over as coach. A win tonight in the Sectional 44 semifinal would cement them as a serious contender this season in Class A.

”Whenever you play Sheridan, they really are the best in Class A,” Gilbert said. “Other teams come and go. They’ve won 19 sectionals, they’ve won nine state titles.

“I’m hoping the boys can rise to the occasion. Even though we’re ranked seventh [in the coaches’ poll] and we’re 9-1 and they’re 5-5, we’re still the underdog. [Sheridan coach Larry “Bud” Wright] can’t play the underdog til you beat him in the tournament. They’re still the champions of our sectional and they’re going to try to defend it and we’re going to try to beat them.”

TC rolled Clinton Central 37-6 last week while Sheridan crushed Indianapolis Arlington 66-0.

In his time at TC and Clinton Central, Gilbert said his squads have never topped Sheridan in the postseason. This season, the task is as realistic as ever thanks to TC’s balanced attack. Cody Howell has thrown for 1,112 yards. Running back Garrett Kelley has run for 1,254 and Cody Colbert adds another 541.

”I think we’ve got to have a mix. You’ve got to be able to throw the ball,” Gilbert said. “You can’t beat a Bud Wright team if you can’t throw the ball, but you’ve got to be smart about it. If I wait til we’re third and 12 to throw the ball, we’re in trouble.

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