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4-0 Linton at 3-1 Boonville


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Miners Back On The Road to Face 4A Boonville                  

 

 

     After two emotional big wins on a 2-game homestand at Roy Williams, the Miners take to the highway for their 3rd long road trip of 2022.  The Pioneers of Boonville have been on the Miner schedule starting in 2020.  Coach Darin Ward has always had a tough physical team and we’ve seen some great athetes along the way.  The name Mockabee jumps to mind!  Linton leads the short series 2-1, winning the opening tilt 27-16.  That game had Linton up 21-0 featuring two Lance Dyer TD runs, but Boonville scored twice in the 4th.  Luke Lannan also had  TD runs.  2021 was one for the books at Boonville with it taking overtime before the Pioneers could claim a 44-42 win on a stop of Hunter Gennicks on a 2 point PAT.  It was a tough loss as it looked like Linton had the game in the bag after Hunter Johns, then a sophomore, returned a punt 70 yards for a 36-28 lead with only 1:31 remaining.  A “Hail Mary” pass from QB Mason Phillips to freshman Marques Ballard that was in the hands of a Miner defender gave the Pioneers a slim chance.  Mockabee scored with 18 seconds left, then scored the 2 points to tie the game sending it to overtime.  Both teams scored, but Gennicks was stopped scrambling to make a play for the tie and Linton was on the bottom end of quite an exciting contest.  2022’s score was a 35-14 win for the red n blue, but it was 14-7 Boonville at 9:09 of the 2nd quarter.  Gabe Eslinger had a 67 yard spring to tie the game, then caught a 38 yard pass from Gennicks to take the lead into the half.  Gennicks sand Frew Smith had TDs in the 2nd half while the miner D threw a shutout. 

 

 

                Coach Ward came to Boonville in 2015 from a sectional championship in his only hear at Charlestown in a 10-3 season.  He started his head coaching career at Corydon Central in 2001 with 8 years and a 27-27 record. This is his 8th year at Boonville, with a 43-32 record.  Their 3-1 start is their best since an 11-1 2018 season where they lost to Evansville Central in sectional finale.  The opened with a 36-8 shelling of 2-2 2A Paoli, then battled unbeaten ranked 3A Southridge 13-0. A game that saw a boonville fumble in the endzone in the 4th quarter leading to a 6 of those Raider points.  They responded by winning a hard fought 20-16 win to put the only defeat on 3A Heritage Hills this year.  Last week was another dogfight at Bicknell coming away with an overtime 13-6 win over North Knox. 

 

 

Boonville lost 13 seniors from a 2-6 season, but return 9 starters on offense including nearly all skill players in QB Clay Conner (#6) 6’5 200, RB Reece Wilder (#22 6’2 167) FB Carter Wolfe (#33 6’2 176) and WR’s Marques Ballard, the lone junior (#26 6’2 171) and Cooper Aigner (#20 6’2 165).  5 of their 6 starting linemen also return anchored by 6’2 182 Center Connor Trice.  Gain Maxey 6’2 189 and Clark Monks #51 6’2 183 return at Guards.  Sadler Wall #54 6’2 185 joins his fellow seniors at Tackle, with the lone newcomer Stihl Scott #72 6’2 198.  This gives Coach Ward a ton of experience on the offensive side of the ball.  Conner is equal threat pass and run.  He has the most rushes at 54, 2 more and Wilder at RB.  Wilder leads in yardage with 337 on 52 with 4 TDs.  Conner has 2 rush TDs.  Conner is 26 of 51 passing for 282 yards with a touchdown and interception.  Wolfe figures in the run attack with 62 yards on 10, and Ballard as well with 83 yards on 12 carries and a score.  The main weapon in the air is Aigner with 12 receptions for a team high 173 and the lone TD.  The TE Parker has also caught a pass.  Point being, the Pioneers will run twin on one side and sometimes add a third wideout to spread the field.  When that happens we see #11 Walker Pierce (also the QB backup) or #5 Tyler Rinehart.

 

Defensively I’ve seen Boonville in various formations depending on their opposition.  Last week with North Knox there were heavy in the box, but yet the Warriors got 259 rushing averaging 5.5 per carry.  In fact teams have rushed over 200 yards in their last 3 games vs Boonville, but nobody has had much success passing the ball.  They use several Linebackers that can line up it seems anywhere. Wolfe is  their leading tackler at 55 is situation both inside and out.  Wilder much the same has 23 stops 3 for loss.  Other Linebackers I’ve seen- #62 Junior Blayze Marchland (6’2 190) and#17 Junior Wyatt Franz (6’2 163)  have both been in on the inside with either Wolfe or Wilder.  Franz was not dressed last week, but was a starter the first three games. QB Conner is at another OLB spot, as well as #51 Monks from the Oline.  It may be they rotate to give 2 way starters a blow.  It the same case up front as usually I see a 3 man front with either Maxey at 6’2 189 or #58 Josh Biggins (12, 6’2 187) at Nose Guard.  Scott and Parker on either side.  I’ve seen Maxey as well as Marchland line up wide like defensive ends crashing in.  Scott had 20 tackles 5 for loss, Maxey 13 with 3 for loss. The defensive backfield has been solid with Ballard, who is certainly the speedster in the bunch, Aiger, Rinehart and #15 Ethan Smith (11, 6;2 161) at corner.  Smith has 20 tackles with 2 for loss, and sometimes looks like an OLB.  Aigner and Ballard both with 23 tackle each.  Conner and Aigner each have a pick on the year.

 

The Miner Offense has been putting up points at the rate of 53 points per game.  Linton is currently averaging 439.25 total offense per game, 339 rushing 100.25 in the air.  Miners have been efficient scoring on 27 of 41 possessions at a 68.3 % click.  The defense has also done will with just a 22.7% score per possession and allowing 263 total offense.  The Miners have been explosive on offense as well with 27 plays of 20+ yards, and again efficient scoring on 16 of 17 red zone appearances.  Linton has rushed for 1,356 yards, at 10.7 per carry and 23 scores, while allowing just 486 total from opponents (3.18 per, 5 TD).   Linton is led on the ground attack by QB Hunter Gennicks (#14 Sr, 6’ 195 ) with  545 yards 9 TDs on 35 carries.  Sr Hunter Johns (#12, 5’8 180) is at 366 on 34 attempts and 8 scores.  Both have three 100 yards games each, and each with over 11 yards average per carry.  Jesse Voigtschild (#8 Soph 5;7 150) adds another 3 TS on 145 yards rushing, and Jr Braden Walters (#16 6’5 190) adds 88.  The Passing game has been a vital part of keeping defenses honest as Gennicks has hit on 35 of 45 (77%) for 394 with 5 TDs and 1 Int.  Sr Logan Web (#23, 6’4 205) has the most catches at 23 for 104 yards and a score, but Walters at 6’5 had the yards at 157 on 11 receptions and 2 TDS.  6’3 freshman Paul Oliver (#13, 6’3 205) adds 4 for 50 and a score. 

 

The offensive line has been the “Trench Dawgs”, their self-pinned moniker.  3 Seniors, all multi- year starters, with center Nathan Watson (#74 6’0 255) and guards Wrigley Franklin (#51 6’3 225) and Aiden GIles (#56 6’3 200).  At tackles are soph Hank Gennicks (#69 6’ 2250) and Jacob Breedlove (Jr #77 6’7 300).  They have proved very physical with Franklin’s 18 pancake blocks backed by 13 from Gennicks and 10 from Giles. 

 

The defense is led by the linebacker corps of Bradyn Cox  (#5, Sr 5’10 185) with 28 tackles, and Giles with 25.5.  Oliver and Franklin have been pass rushing threats with 4 sacks between them as well as 16 hurries.  Franklin also has 24.5 tackles.  Up front it’s #4 Christian Shonk (Sr, 5;10 180) at NG with #9 Ty Boyd (11, 6’1 210) and Hank Gennicks on either side.  The DB group is headed by Hunter Gennicks with 22 tackles and a TD pick Six.  Johns, Voigtschild, Webb as well as Walters (who had a 90 yard pick six last week).  Two others have seen extensive action defensively- Ashton White (#33, Jr, 6’0 195) and freshman Russell Goodman (#6 6’2 280). White (28 tackles) and Goodman (27 1.5 TFL) both come in a ILB and White was spotted at DE on passing situations with 2 QB hurries last week.  Paul Oliver at OLB had 2 interceptions last week, one going 35 yards for a score. 

 

Linton is ranked #1 in both the coaches and the AP class 2A polls for the 2nd week in a row.  Just ahead of power houses Andrean (2-2) and Indianapolis Scecina (4-0), and the only unbeaten 2A team left LaVille.   The Miners have had back to back big wins at home over 2-2 Sullivan 40-20 and 2-2 Monrovia 52-47.  That was after two road games to open the year 56-6 at Parke Heritage and 64-15 over North Vermillion.  Linton is 3rd in 2A according to Sagarin ratings with a 70.66 behind SCecina (73.94) an LaVille (78.11).  Andrean at 70.33 but 2-2 are blostered by a high strength of schedule rating, which can be said for LaVille, Scecina as well as Luers, Triton Central and Mater Dei.  Boonville has a 52.69 rating in 4A but their S.O.S. considerably higher at 49.67  to Linton’s 39.22   The game is still played by real people and in this case on field turf in Boonville.  I will be interested in how the Miners come out in this long road trip after the emotional highs of the Monrovia and especially Sullivan games the prior two weeks.

 

 

     Looking at Boonville on video they are a physical team willing to go toe to toe and pound the rushing game, but can also spread out like Sullivan, and use the QB Conner as both a passing and running threat.  Aigner and Ballard can make plays, and Ballard has the speed to blow by defenders into open space. He was missed on at least 2 occasions in the NK game that would have been scores.  As for Linton, we are certainly happy to see Jose Sevilla-Garcia and his PAT kicking.  He was 4-4 on PAT’s he actually kicked.  One was blocked, and there have been 3 snap or exchange issues there he didn’t kick. Linton proved in the last 2 weeks that they can respond to pressure and can sustain the long drives that result in points but also the affect the mindset of the opposing team.  Of course, an 82 Gennicks run, or Johns busting for 50 up the middle for TDs just 2 plays into a possession accomplishes the same.  I think the passing game still has improvement to be made.  Most all the completions have been short out patterns or Walters across the middle in linebacker area, and then their running abilities take over.  Voigtschild has caught those passes in the seam for big plays.  But the long threat hasn’t hit the big play yet, and it doesn’t necessarily have to, but the threat is there with Webb and his height, and it’s been there just not quite on target.  I am waiting for that to happen then safeties will have to think twice before jumping up to run support!

 

      As always…and for my 23rd year, you can tune myself and Kevin Rader on the good ol’ radio broadcast on WQTY 93.3 FM or on your phone or computer at www.wqtyradio.com.   We have the facts, the history and just simply have been the voice of Miner Football for 2 decades.  If you can’t be there, listen along…and if you are there, listen along as well for the stats, the play by play and to be in on the action as it happens!!!  GO MINERS!

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Miners and Pioneers Light Up Scoreboard in Linton 50-40 Win.

 

 

                In this brief 4-year series between Boonville and Linton, it has been full of excitement with fast pace action, big time hitting, and in some year’s drama.  This 2022 game was no different, and in a lot of ways very similar to the Over Time loss 44-42 two years back at Shelton Field in 2020.  There is little doubt that Boonville will be glad to see Hunter Gennicks graduate, as he has lit up the Pioneers in his 3 years facing them. 

 

 

                Boonville came in after an overtime 13-7 win over North Knox, a game many thought the Pioneers would roll through after beating Heritage Hills the week prior.  Linton made their 3rd long road trip, but their first in two weeks after emotionally high wins over Monrovia and Sullivan at the Roy in the last 2 weeks.  Could the Miners avoid a slip in intensity facing a team they beat easily in 2021 35-14?  The 3-1 Pioneers looked to be excited at the chance to knock of 2A #1 Linton for their first win over the Miners in this series Linton led 3-0.

 

                It was a game that produced big numbers. Linton came in averaging 52.2 pig and 443.2 of total offense per game.  The Miner Defense had been a bend and not break unit the last two games after excellent showings in weeks 1 and 2.  Of course that had something to do with the talent level of Monrovia and Sullivan.  Still, Monrovia had 219 rush yards and drove down the field against us.  Sullivan had 224 in the air and we held out of the endzone twice inside the Miner 10.  In both games the Miners had opened up with big leads early on and could withstand the yardage.  Sullivan had pulled to 27-20 but the Miner Offense turned up the jets, and the Defense hunkered down for win #4.  One would wonder in a dog fight if the big plays could continue for…as well as against, our Miners.

 

                Boonville had proven they could run and throw the ball in game film, and with 6’5 200 Sr QB Clay Conner at the helm of a team that was 6’2” at every position, Linton would indeed be challenged.  The Pioneers put themselves in a hole right away with a hold, but a short pass to Sr Carter Wolfe gained 25 to the Miner 41.  Another Hold on Boonville pushed them from Linton’s 31 to the 41, and later from the 28 facing 4th and 7, Conner’s Pass to a wide open Marques Ballard at the miner 20 sailed overhead.  Pressure was heavy on the QB certainly altering the throw courtesy or Ty Boyd and Wrigley Franklin.  Linton would come out firing with runs from both parts of “the Firm” of Hunter & Hunter. Gennicks with 6, Then Johns with 9 up to the Miner 43.  Gennicks hit Jess Voigtschild on a 3rd and 8 to convert a 3rd down and cross midfield.  Gennicks put Linton at the Boonville 28 on a scramble for 18, then hit Paul Oliver for 18 more into the Red Zone at the 8.  2 plays later Hunter  Johns popped in for TD # 9 for the Senior, and Linton was up 6-0 at 5:07 of the 1st. 

 

                Boonville started from their own 40, and on 3rd and 9 Conner stepped back to find Ballard extremely wide open in stride at the Miner 20.  The pass nearly sailed over his head but Ballard made a great leaping catch, keeping his feet and scoring for a 59 yard touchdown pass.  Bradyn Cox blocked the PAT and left the score tied 6-6 at 4:41.  Linton’s attempt had also failed earlier.                 Linton looked to answer led by another scramble from Gennicks, this for 21 yards to the Pioneer 40. Penalties both aided and hurt Linton and the Miners got inside the 10. Braden Walters pushed the ball to the 9, but was just overthrown in the back of the endzone on 3rd and goal.  This set up a 4th and goal from the 8.  Coming into the contest, Linton had been 16 of 17 in the Red Zone, and would have been one better but Logan Webb juggled the pass perhaps trying to get his footing down in the endzone and dropped it to give Boonville a reprieve and the ball.  Linton had gone 61 yards in 11 plays to come up empty.

                The Pioneer offense was also moving the ball well.  Conner kept for a 35 yard gain on a 3rd and 4 from their own 14, eluding tacklers and catching Linton asleep on the back side. This play would be used many times successfully through-out the night.  Another 3rd and 7 was converted on a pass from Conner to Cooper Aigner, then a Miner offside penalty set up 1st and 5 and the Linton 32.  Back to back runs from Reese Wilder pushed to the Linton 23, and Connor repeated the back side play for a slash to the right corner for 6 points and a Boonville lead at 7:35 of the 2nd quarter.  This time the PAT was foiled on a bad snap, but it was the 1st time in 2022 that Linton found themselves behind in a ballgame at 12-6. 

 

                Linton was definitely not on the level of enthusiasm that we had seen in the previous four outings, and were in need of something to jolt them up.  It came in the form of #12 Hunter Johns.  “Papa” as they call him, took the ball on a tall bounce at the Miner 13 from Josh Biggins.  He took a few steps straight down sideline before cutting to the middle where a big hole had been created by the Return team blocking downfield.  Hunter put a wicked stiff arm on Ballard at the Miner 40, then out-ran he last Boonville defender 60 yards, a total of 87 to silence the black and gold hometown fans.  Big credit goes to the initial blocks from Braydn Cox and Russell Goodman, then to Voigtschild , Michael Auberry and Cody Pigg as Johns cut to the middle.  Then is was Jimmie Wright, Linkyn Yarber and Ashton White that sealed off defenders giving Hunter a huge gap to ignite his jets to open field.   Of course Colton McKinnon & Eli Scott had to do their part for the play for be successful. And it was much needed.  Hunter Gennicks ran in the 2 point conversion and Linton was back up 14-12 15 seconds after falling behind for the first time all year.

 

                Things did pick up for the Miner D as they stuffed Wilder for no gain on a 3rd and 1 at the Pioneer 43.  Boonville elected to do, and Conner looked to have been stopped short by Christian Shonk and Cox, but a measurement that took a long while for the white hat to call 1st down finally happened.  From then on it was meticulous runs by both Wilder and Conner that went double digits per carry to the Miner 12.  It would be Wilder who busted through for the final 12 as Boonville marched 689 yards in 10 plays all on the ground save for 9 yards in passing.  The Pioneers run for 2 was stopped but Boonville themselves had answered right back at 4:00 in the 2nd with an 18-14 advantage.  Then the Miners were caught off guard as Biggins squib kick split through the front line and between the second line and took a huge hop.  No Miner got to it before Boonville’s Tyler Rinehart at the Miner 43. 

 

                Paul Oliver and Hank Gennicks dropped Wolfe for a loss of 3 and Gennicks pressured Conner to scramble where Oliver push him out of bounds forcing a 3rd and 9. This time Conner’s run was thwarted by Gennicks again, and White forcing Boonville to punt which put the Miners at their own 21 with 2:17 before half. It was big that the Defense kept Boonville from expanding their lead and momentum.  However, the Miner offense had not been on the field at all in the 2nd quarter.  The last offensive play had been at the 0:12 mark of the 1st on the cropped pass in the endzone.  It showed.  A holding penalty negated a nice run, then two passed for Walters were incomplete and Linton only run 39 seconds off the clock.  Oliver booted a 26 yard punt with no return, yet Boonville sat at the Linton 41 with 1:38 yet to run off until halftime.

 

                And Boonville struck immediately.  They had been able to find open receivers most of the night, and Conner did not miss them.  Again it was Marques Ballard the speedy junior who cut inside the defender and found himself wide open at the Miner 33 where Conner drilled the ball.  Ballard broke an arm tackle and strode into the end zone easily, and then Conner passed to Wyatt Franz for another 2 points and now the Miners faced serious trouble down 26-14 with 1:29 still left to the break.  Perhaps Boonville scored too quickly?  Hard to imagine they cared at that point, and honestly Linton had probably played their worst quarter of the year at this point and would be happy to get to the locker-room knowing they’d have the first possession of the 2nd half.

 

                Of course, we in Linton know that wasn’t going to happen.  And this is where you find out what your team is made up.  Linton had not seen much in the way of adversity thus far, although the Miner drive against Sullivan when it was 27-20 was a good sign.  However, this was in Boonville, and Boonville’s home base was indeed fired up.  On 2nd and 10 Gennicks hit Johns on a swing pass that earned 14 yards, then Johns took a late option pitch another 16 yards to the Boonville 28.  It was hard to fathom that as bad as things had been, a miner score would put things in much better light.  Linton reached the red zone at the 19 on an Oliver reception, but Boonville Defense stood strong on back to back Gennicks runs.  Facing 3rd and 10 Stihl Scott met Gennicks head up at the Line Of Scrimmage leaving a 4th and 4, but in reality with just 8 seconds left, it was 4th and goal from the 8.  After time-outs, it was Gennicks to his right keeping the ball and pushing through tacklers for the Miner score!  Hunter Johns drew Linton to within 4 at 26-22.   Russell Goodman sent the Miners into the half on an even better note as he busted through to sack Conner for a loss of 13 as the horn sounded.

 

                It was the type of game many expected.  Boonville was showing they had every bit the offense of Linton, and showing that they could expose some areas of concern for Miner Fans.  The halftime numbers were an unusual site for Linton as the Pioneers led in total yards 293 to 208, with 154 in the air that accounted for 2 long Pioneer scores.  Linton was really saved by the Johns kickoff return TD, and that last scoring drive definitely picking up spirits heading in the half. Again the Time of Possession heavily favored Boonville 14:37 to 9:23 as Linton had the ball just 2:00 of the entire 2nd Quarter.

 

 

                It’s said the first drive of the second half is always one of the most important possessions of a game.  This is very true on this night but it looked grim after the 1st two produced 0 yards.  Facing a near must-have 3rd and 10, it was the middle screen to Johns that worked earlier, and it worked again for 16 yards to the Pioneer 43.  Then a play we’ve been oh so close on all year finally connected; the long ball.  It didn’t look pretty as Ballard had a play for Boonville, but Logan Webb stay focused and down 26-14 with 8 seconds to go in the first half to a 28-26 lead just 57 seconds into the 2nd half.  The offense had done their job, but what about the defense? Boonville started strong with Wilder getting 11 to move the chains, then 2 plays later for 6 for another 1st down to the Miner 43.  Conner hit Aigner for 17 more, then it was Reese Wilder again up the middle for another 20 yards at the Linton 2. 2 plays later Conner got just enough to put the Pioneers back on top with a 9 play 68 yard drive.  The lead was 32-28 Boonville with 7:35 in the 3rd.

 

                It was beginning to looks as if whomever had the ball last, would win; or, whomever made the first turnover offensively would lose the game.  Very much like 2020.  Linton began their next drive from their own 23 with Walters gaining 13.  2 plays later Hunter Gennicks busted loose for 30 yards to the Pioneer 30.   A Pass Interference call on a downfield pass to Webb moved Linton to the 11. From the 2 Walters culminated the 8 play 74 yard drive on a 2 yard dive at 4:20 to yet again answer the Pioneer score.  Gennicks converted the 2 point play for a 36 to 32 lead.  The gauntlet laid for the defense to make a stop didn’t help as Boonville would start near mid-field.  Once more it was Wilder with back to back runs setting up a 3rd and 1 which Conner converted by just enough at the Miner 40.  Miner Linebackers Goodman and Franklin stopped Wilder for no gain, an incompletion left a 3rd and 10.  Miner NT Christian got pressure on Conner and Wrigley Franklin leaped to tip the intended screen pass intended for Ballard.  This forced the first punt of the night from Boonville’s Ballard who dropped it at the Miner 12 with 1:46 in the 3rd.  It was the stop the Miners needed.

                Linton’s offense had scored on 4 of their 6 possessions, and their last 3 in a row.  They would cover 88 yards in the next 8 plays in complete control. Gennicks connected with Webb for 8, then Johns ran for 13 for a 1st down at their own 33.  Gennicks ran for 15 to midfield for another chain mover.  Boonville’s Stihl Scott and Ethan Parker dropped Jesse Voigtschild for a loss of 7, and on 3rd and 17 Oliver’s catch at the Boonville 43 got 13 of that.  On 4th and 3, Linton elected to go and Gennicks popped through and outran everything for a 43 score just into the 4th quarter.  Hunter Johns got the 2 point run and you could feel the air come of out the Pioneer balloon as Linton jumped up 44-26 at 10:52 of the final stanza.

 

                If the balloon hadn’t burst with that last Linton score, it did as Walter executed a perfect onside kick catching the Pioneers unexpectedly.  He ran alongside the kick at it went the 10 required yards, but Boonville’s Elijah Biggins looked to catch the ball at the Pioneer 42, but Walters put a big hit that caused Biggins to lose the ball before securing it, and Russell Goodman wrapped it up on the spot.  Still Linton had to convert a 3rd and 3 at the Pioneer 35 with yet another Gennicks run of 10. The play of the drive was a terrific catch from Logan Webb at Boonville’s 9 on a 3rd and 12.  Webb had his biggest game of the year and his catch on 3rd and 16 got 9 to the Boonville 5 but left Linton with a 4th and goal. This time it was Hunter Johns who bulled forward to ice the cake.  The 2 point pass play was incomplete, but Linton had reached the 50 point plateau for the fifth time in five weeks, and led 50-32 with 6:24 remaining.

 

                Boonville was then forced to go to the air game, which had been successful for the most part but Linton was playing the pass and forced three incompletions on plays by Walters, Oliver and Gennicks.  Ballard’s punt went out of bounds at the Miner 24. Linton nearly gave the ball away on successive plays as a snap went over Gennicks head but hit the side of Voigtschild who was in motion behind the QB.  Conner very nearly fell on it, but Jesse prevailed, although it was a 7 yard loss.  The Linton went to the Johns’ middle screen but Pioneer LB Wyatt Franz was right there and the ball bounced off his hands incomplete at the Miner 20.  Paul Oliver punted 23 yards giving Boonville the ball at their own 43 with 4:31 still on the clock.  Conner connected with Aigner at the Miner 45, but Hayden Feltner and Wrigley Franklin stopped him short of the sticks, then Franklin and Goodman stopped Conner a yard short again.  Conner tried to go deep for Ballard at Linton’s 25 but it was incomplete.  4th and 1 saw a big play by Franklin and fellow senior Aiden Giles for a loss of 3 to the disgust of Conner and a turn-over on downs.

 

                With 3:19 left in the game, Linton seemed content to run that time off the clock, and punted with 1:59 left.  However it appeared Oliver took and extra step executed a rugby style punt and Boonville was able to get to the kick with Parker and Wolfe fell on it at the Miner 31. Conner hit a wide open Nathan Sowder at the 20 before the senior even made his cut.  The ball hit him on the numbers and to his credit he caught it, but had clear sailing the final 20 yards to pay dirt.  Conner and Aigner combined for 2 point pass ending the scoring at 50-40 with 1:49 to run off. Linton would kneel down the final 3 plays of the game to move on to 5-0 while Boonville fell to 3-2.

 

                It was certainly a dogfight.  It was certainly good to see Linton answer to the adversity of being down 26-14 late in the 1st half.  It was definitely good to see the offense execute when they absolutely had to just to stay in the game and eventually win the game.  It was also good to see the Miner defense make plays in the second half that opened the door for the Miners to get some separation on the scoreboard.  Not to mention having a Hunter John’s kickoff return, and see a downfield pass connect for a big TD.  To anyone present at the game, and certainly those listening, there were still some issue on pass defense that led to three 30+ yard TD Passes, and a couple others that were missed.  In the end Conner hit on 12 of 21 for 218 yards, 153 on yards after catch. For the first time this season the opposition had more explosive plays (20+) with 7 to Linton’s 4.  Linton still had more big plays over all with 27 plays gaining at least 5 yards to Boonville’s 20.  Boonville had more tackles for loss with 7 to Linton’s 3.   The Kickoff Return TD, the TD with 8 seconds before the half, the 43 yard TD pass to Webb on the 1st series of 2nd half, the defensive stop forcing a punt late in the 3rd, then the onside kick after Linton had just scored that led to another score were the turning points.

 

As Coach Oliver stated in his post-game interview with me, they are still trying to put kids in the right places, still trying to work out the kinks in a relatively new defense with a lot of guys in different positions, and a lot of starters to replace from 2021.  I have to keep telling myself that these are still 15-17 year olds who have to think on their feet and have a lot to digest with decisions that have to be made in the blink of an eye.  I need to remember that myself, as well as just watch and NCAA or NFL game on the big screen each weekend because you see blown coverages and confusion at that level just as you do in high school.  So as the coaches always say, the regular season is about getting prepared for the post-season, and part of that is the learning process and trying to always get better while addressing the issues that come up during the 9 weeks leading to it. 

 

Both teams had 400+ total yards: Linton with 459, Boonville at 409.   Both teams were very balanced in their attacks.  Led by Hunter Gennicks’ biggest rushing numbers of the year, Linton had 277 on the ground on 51 attempts.  Gennicks had 185 yards on 21 carries with 2 scores, giving him 730 yards on the year and 11 rush TDs.  Hunter Johns added 65 yards on 13 carries and his 9th and 10th rushing TDs. He is also having a solid year with 451 yards rushing to date. Braden Walters had a score on 8 for 36 while Jesse Voigtschild was the victim of a couple big negative plays and had (-9) on 6 touches.  Equally as impressive was the passing game hitting for 182 yards on 13 of 26 passing from Gennicks who threw his 6th TD pass of 2022 while staying at 1 interception. As mentioned Logan Webb had his biggest night of the season with 6 catches and 91 yards and caught his 2nd TD of the year.  He was the main target of Gennicks with 10 throws his way.  Paul Oliver had 3 catches for 38 yards, Johns 2 for 33, Walters 1-14 and Voigtschild 1 for 6.  Boonville’s tandem of Clay Conner (17-92 2TD) and Reece Wilder (16-90 1 TD) were all but 9 yards of the Pioneer total of 191 rushing yards on 37 carries.  Carter Wolfe 2-3 and Marques Ballard 2-6 filled the balance.  Conner hit on 3 TDs, and 218 yards in the air on 12- of 21 passing.  Ballard had a big night with 2 scores on 4 catches for 113 yards. Cooper Aigner had 3 for 32, Wolfe 2 for 31, Sowder 1-31 (td), Parker 1-7 and Wilder 1 for 4.

 

Linton got big play from freshman Russell Goodman. He had 11 tackles, a sack and 2 TFL, plus he returned 3 kickoffs for 48 yards and recovered the on-side kick.  Hunter Gennicks had 9 tackles, 6 of those solo. 3 Miners had 7 tackles each-Bradyn Cox, Aiden Giles and Wrigley Franklin. Ashton White had 6, Paul Oliver 5.  Boonville got outstanding play from Carter Wolfe with 14 stops and a TFL.  Reece Wilder had 11, Cooper Aigner 10, Marques Ballard with 9.  Ethan Parker had 2.5 TFL in his 6 total. 

 

Linton hits the road again next week at North Daviess where the Cougars have won 4 in a row since losing their opening week to unbeaten Tecumseh.  Boonville hits the road to Mt. Vernon to face the Wildcats who are 4-1 themselves.  My thoughts are with Pioneer senior Gavin Maxey who had battled back from (2) ACL tears to come back his senior year only to appear to have suffered another knee injury (the other knee) early on in the Linton game.  Hopefully it wasn’t as serious as that.  Cougar Valley will undoubtedly be rocking with the thoughts of knocking the still #1 2A Miners off their pedestal.  Linton has won 13 in a row against ND with the last Cougar win in 2010.  It would be great to see Miner Faithful fill the Miner side of the Valley in solid Red for this team to take the field.

 

 

                 

               

 

 

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Always hated playing down at Boonville during the glory days of the Big 8…must be a Warrick County thing that the football fields have a crest in the middle (Castle does as well…never been to Tecumseh though). Seems to have provided some sort of weird advantage that we just struggled down there. Impressive to see the success the Miners had in this series. Always rooting for Linton. 

 

Great breakdown as always MP. 

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20 minutes ago, SEAL_63 said:

Always hated playing down at Boonville during the glory days of the Big 8…must be a Warrick County thing that the football fields have a crest in the middle (Castle does as well…never been to Tecumseh though). Seems to have provided some sort of weird advantage that we just struggled down there. Impressive to see the success the Miners had in this series. Always rooting for Linton. 

 

Great breakdown as always MP. 

Castle's crown is the second highest peak in Indiana...

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30 minutes ago, SEAL_63 said:

Always hated playing down at Boonville during the glory days of the Big 8…must be a Warrick County thing that the football fields have a crest in the middle (Castle does as well…never been to Tecumseh though). Seems to have provided some sort of weird advantage that we just struggled down there. Impressive to see the success the Miners had in this series. Always rooting for Linton. 

 

Great breakdown as always MP. 

 

since I have lived in VInny since 1993 I always pay attention to Alices Football... and it's great to see the enthusiasm for the program to be happening again!

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5 minutes ago, SEAL_63 said:

Boonville’s pales in comparison I must say. 

Boonville has a nice natural grass field. They deserve turf, but as far as grass goes it is pretty darn good. Castle's soccer field is far better then Lidy field.

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21 minutes ago, Miner_Pride said:

 

since I have lived in VInny since 1993 I always pay attention to Alices Football... and it's great to see the enthusiasm for the program to be happening again!

I could ramble at length on the state of the program…but in short..it’s been difficult the last 10-15 years to watch VL football fade from relevancy (the 2017 team being the outlier). The next few classes (starting with the current seniors) have injected real belief in the program again and it’s refreshing to say the least..not just from a talent standpoint but from a mental and character aspect as well. 

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