Fishers quarterback Zach Eaton’s smile was a mile wide on Friday night. And why not? Fishers knocked off rival Hamilton Southeastern 38-22 in Class 6A Sectional 4, avenging a regular-season loss to HSE six weeks earlier.
Revenge is sweet.
Fishers was one of eight teams in the state to win in the sectional on Friday after losing to the same opponent during the season. Ben Davis was another, defeating Pike 55-27 in Sectional 5 after losing to the Red Devils 30-27 in Week 3.
The saying goes, “It’s hard to beat a team twice.” Or something like that.
“We told our kids that it was going to be a different game,” Fishers coach Rick Wimmer said. “I think we learned some things from that first game. I felt like our effort was good in the first game. We just didn’t execute for four quarters.”
High school football sectional roundup: Week 1
In 2010, when Fishers won state, it lost to HSE 40-17 in the regular season. The Tigers knocked off the Royals 28-0 in the sectional championship, a week after winning 17-14 at Carmel. In 2012, Fishers lost to HSE 28-21 in the regular season and pummeled the Royals 42-7 in the sectional semifinal. (It won the sectional title the following week.)
It is difficult to beat a team twice, particularly if those teams are evenly-matched. Ben Davis lost to Warren Central and Carmel last year during the regular season, then beat both in the tournament on its way to a state title. In 2013, Warren Central avenged regular-season losses to Pike and Carmel with wins over both (Pike in the regional and Carmel in the state finals). In 2011, Carmel lost 22-20 to Warren Central during the season before beating the Warriors in a 34-30 classic in the sectional championship.
The finality of losing in the tournament is difficult, especially when it’s to a rival – just ask HSE coach Scott May.
“I’m proud of them,” he said. “You go 8-1, undefeated in the (Hoosier Crossroads Conference). You never want it to end and you don’t want to end to Fishers, I know that. But that’s the way it goes.”
There are a few rematch games among area teams this week:
• Ben Davis (6-4) at Avon (8-2): Maybe the marquee game of the week. The Sectional 5 championship is a rematch of Ben Davis’ 49-42 win on Aug. 28. Avon beat Ben Davis in the 2009 sectional, but has lost five in a row to the Giants since.
• Harrison (4-5) at Westfield (5-4): Westfield won the regular season meeting, 38-21. This is a Class 5A Sectional 11 semifinal.
• Plainfield (5-4) at Decatur Central (7-2): In Class 5A Sectional 13, this is a rematch of Decatur Central’s 35-14 win in September.
• Mt. Vernon (6-4) at Pendleton Heights (4-6): Mt. Vernon rolled 35-7 earlier this season. This a Class 4A Sectional 22 semifinal.
• Hamilton Heights (7-3) at West Lafayette (9-1): A Class 3A Sectional 28 semifinal is a rematch of West Lafayette’s 38-7 win in September.
• Guerin Catholic (8-2) vs. Bishop Chatard (6-3), at Lawrence North: Chatard should have plenty of motivation after losing 17-13 to Guerin earlier this month. This is a Class 3A Sectional 29 semifinal.
• Cardinal Ritter (6-4) vs. Scecina (5-5), at UIndy: This Class 2A Sectional 37 semifinal is a rematch of Ritter’s 35-24 win on Oct. 9.
High school football sectionals schedule: Week 2
• Avon quarterback Brandon Peters continues to pile up big numbers. In a 61-14 win over Brownsburg on Friday, the Michigan recruit was 12-for-18 for 260 yards and three touchdowns. For the season, Peters has completed 63.8 percent of his passes for 2,441 yards and 32 touchdowns (to just four interceptions). Princeton recruit Andrew Griffin (61 catches, 974 yards, 15 TDs) is closing in on 1,000 yards receiving.
• Warren Central senior Jay Coe didn’t have a huge game in a 49-7 win over Perry Meridian on Friday, but he’s closing in on 1,000 rushing yards. Coe, one of the state’s most versatile weapons, has 985 rushing yards and 20 touchdowns (7.2 yards per carry) and 40 catches for 543 yards and five TDs. Warren Central hosts Southport in a Class 6A Sectional 7 championship on Friday.
• Covenant Christian lost its first sectional game on Friday, 29-19 to Riverton Parke in Class A Sectional 45. Larry McWhorter’s program ended its first season with a 2-5 record.
• Will anyone challenge Lafayette Central Catholic in Class A? Seems unlikely. The Knights (10-0), who host Attica (7-3) on Friday in a Sectional 42 semifinal, have allowed just 54 points all season. And 20 of those were in a 38-20 win over a 9-1 Class 3A West Lafayette team. No. 1 LCC would see No. 2 Pioneer (10-0) in the regional.
• North Central lost 42-7 to Lawrence North on Friday to finish 0-10 for the second consecutive season. North Central, which started its program in 1960, hadn’t suffered a winless season prior to last year.
• The turnaround team of the area may go to Northwest, which finished 5-5 under coach Ibrahim Tawfeek after a 35-27 loss to West Vigo in the Class 3A Sectional 29 game on Friday. Northwest had won just three games the previous four seasons combined and hadn’t finished at .500 or better since going 9-3 in 2005.
• Fort Wayne Bishop Luers and Northwestern set a tournament record for most combined points in Luers’ 82-52 win in Class 3A Sectional 27 on Friday. Luers’ Austin Mack, an Ohio State recruit, scored four touchdowns.