Four Downs: Regional Championship

A preview of this Friday's regional football championship between Southridge and Paoli.

Rams @ Raiders

Teams: Class 2A No. 7 Paoli (12-0) at Class 2A No. 10 Southridge (9-3), 7:30 p.m. Friday at Raider Field.

Series: Southridge leads 9-3.

Last meeting: The Raiders and Rams last met in the regional round of the posteason in 2013 where Paoli defeated Southridge 24-20 in head coach Scott Buening’s first season with Southridge.

1.) With a victory on Friday, Southridge will have won at least 10 games for the third consecutive season — the second time they’ve done that in school history (2006-2008 under Kelly Murphy). Since starting the football program in 1972, the Raiders have eclipsed the double-digit mark in wins nine times. Three of those double-digit win seasons have come under Buening, including his first season at Southridge.

2.) In last week’s 35-25 sectional championship victory over Evansville Mater Dei, three Raiders rushed for at least 100 yards. Colson Montgomery (Soph., QB) led the way with 162, Tucker Schank (Sr., RB/DB) had 130 and Cole Calvert (Jr., RB/LB) had 101. The Raiders rushed for a total of 404 yards in the victory marking the third time they’ve eclipsed the 400-yard mark (North Posey, South Spencer in the regular season).

3.) Montgomery, Schank and Calvert all also have at least 10 rushing touchdowns this season. Cole Calvert recovered two fumbles in last week’s victory over the Wildcats for his first two fumble recoveries of the season. He’s now tied with Austin Kaeck (Jr., WR/DB) and Logan Seger (Sr., TE/DE) for the team lead. Calvert and Leyton Lauderdale (Soph., OL/DL) are tied with the most forced fumbles (two). Garrett Voegerl (Jr., WR/DB) increased his team lead in deflections as he had three more last week to bring up his total to 10. Voegerl also leads all Raider defenders in interceptions with three.

4.) The last time Paoli was this deep into the season without a loss was in 2009 when they finished 13-1. Their loss came to Monrovia in the semistate round, 30-13. Just a few seasons before that, the Rams were unable to win a game in 2006, 2004 and 2003. This year, Paoli’s closest game was last week’s sectional championship as they narrowly defeated Providence 21-17. Their only other single-digit deficit game this year was a 29-20 home victory over conference foe Mitchell. In last week’s sectional championship victory over Providence, Ty Lawson (Sr., QB/LB) led the way with 111 rushing yards and two touchdowns (including the game-winning TD) while fellow senior Ian Strange (RB/LB) added 89 yards.

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