COAL CITY – Independence High School scored 16 unanswered points in the second half to defeat Sherman in overtime, 22-14 on Friday evening.
“We could not move the ball on the ground and we threw the ball more than we wanted to in the second half,” said Sherman coach J.D. Fairchild.
The Tide’s running game has seemingly went into hiding over the last two weeks with a tough showing in last week’s loss versus Liberty (Raleigh) that saw the maroon and gold net merely 20 yards on the ground.
Independence (2-4, 1-2 Home) looked vulnerable early when Sherman scored twice in the second quarter to take a 14-6 lead into intermission.
For the Tide (2-4, 0-3 Away), Aaron Lowe scored on a 5-yard dive and Braden Harrah caught a 16-yard touchdown strike from frosh quarterback Bailey Kirk. Harrah topped off the score with a 2-point conversion catch from Kirk to cap off Sherman’s scoring in the second frame and to their eventual demise, the game.
“We have to get our ground game on track for this Friday. Van always play hard and are tough kids. They are very well coached so we have to play with purpose and intensity.”
Sherman harassed Patriot senior quarterback Brian Sexton into several hurries and two sacks in the first half.
After an Independence score in the third topped off with a successful 2-point conversion, Sherman did not sniff the end zone as the teams headed to overtime knotted at 14.
The Tide was hampered by four interceptions and a lost fumble, thwarting red zone drives on two occasions.
The Patriots took possession first in the overtime and punched the ball in from short yardage and surprisingly went for two on the conversion. They were successful and put the pressure on the tide as they took their shot from the 35-yard line. They were unable to hit paydirt to get the chance for a second overtime period. Sherman fell, 22-14.
“We just couldn’t get anything going after the second quarter,” said Fairchild.
Sherman’s defense played well enough to give the team a chance at the victory. Any second half score could have emitted a need for the overtime.
The Patriots produced 12 first downs to Sherman’s five.
“Coach Henderson (Jim) has our special teams playing very well. We are getting some nice returns and our coverage has been good all year,” added Fairchild.
“We have to get more offensive production.”
Sherman will travel to Van in a Boone County brawl for Class A bragging rights in Boone County. The Bulldogs (2-3) defeated Richwood, 39-35 last week.
For the Sherman offense – Bailey Kirk completed 9-of-20 passes for 73 yards with one touchdown and four interceptions. Nate Dickens had five carries for 34 yards, Jordan Thompson had four for 24 yards, Aaron Lowe had seven carries for seven yards and a touchdown. Taite Pauley had five carries for six yards, Tyler Stewart had two carries for five yards. Braden Harrah caught four balls for 35 yards and a score, Tyler Stewart caught three for 24 yards, and Adam Miller had two for 14.
For the Sherman defense – Logan Buzzard had 13 tackles, Braden Harrah had 10, Josh Buffington (one sack) and Taite Pauley had nine, Aaron Lowe had eight, Kris Santaonio had six and a sack, Nate Dickens had four, Brandon Richards had three and a sack and Kyle Davis, Dakota Williams and Matt Crose had one.
For the Sherman Special Teams – Braden Harrah had one kickoff for 49 yards and Trenton Sheppard booted two for 36 yards. Harrah punted six times for 119 yards. Harrah returned two kickoffs for 110 yards and two punts for 69.