Raiders play lights out against Rebels

Photos by Sarah Ann Jump/The Herald
Southridge's Cole Calvert celebrates with Colson Montgomery after Montgomery scored a touchdown during Friday's football game in Huntingburg. Southridge defeated South Spencer 55-21 as Montgomery totaled four touchdowns (two passing, two rushing) and Calvert rushed for two touchdowns in the victory. For more photos from the game, click here.

By ALLEN LAMAN
alaman@dcherald.com

HUNTINGBURG — After a 55-21 beatdown win against South Spencer on Friday night, Southridge football fans funneled out of Raider Field in Huntingburg largely satisfied with the team’s lights out win.

The Raiders (4-1, 3-0) amassed 521 total offensive yards and held the Rebels (0-5, 0-3) to a paltry 182 yards. Southridge Quarterback Colson Montgomery put up four total touchdowns — a pair of which came on long rushes from broken plays, while two more came in the air. The team’s defense forced 5 turnovers and piled on three sacks while limiting the Rebels to 182 offensive yards.

All was fine as the homecoming game came to an end.

Then, suddenly, the stadium’s lights literally cut out minutes after the final whistle, eliciting screams and cheers from players and fans — even a little panic from some.

“Honestly, I had no idea — I thought I passed out for a second,” said Southridge Senior Logan Seger. “That’s never happened before. It’s a weird night.”

In the ensuing darkness, Raider coach Scott Buening analyzed his team’s performance and said his players just couldn’t find a rhythm throughout the contest. The Raiders jumped out to an early 7-0 lead when junior Cole Calvert burst into the endzone on a 55-yard run on Southridge’s first play from scrimmage.

South Spencer responded on their next drive, however, which was capped with a 3-yard touchdown from senior running back Alex Fodge. A Colson Montgomery dash and Seth Nunamaker run pushed the Raiders up 21-7 with early in the second quarter, but the Rebels’ Kaje Cron returned a kickoff to the house and kept the Rebels close at 21-14.

“We just didn’t get in a great rhythm today, and we gave up a few plays defensively,” Beuning said.  “You gotta give some credit to South Spencer. They’ve got a nice passing game on their end. But I thought overall — very pleased with our performance.”

Southridge then proceeded to score five unanswered touchdowns, with South Spencer’s final score coming on a 10-yard run from Fodge as the clock ticked down to 3:14 remaining in the game.

After they completed their march onto the field, Southridge High School senior wide receiver Matt Price dropped his crutches and was hoisted into the air by senior Amanda Brewer during the homecoming ceremony at halftime of Friday’s football game in Huntingburg. Amanda was crowned homecoming queen.  For more photos from the game, click here.

Key to the Raiders’ midgame barrage was Montgomery, who turned plays that appeared to be destined for huge losses into big gains.

“He made a couple plays that I thought were dead in the water,” Buening reflected. “That’s what special players do.”

Montgomery — who models his play after Baltimore Ravens’ dual-threat quarterback Lamar Jackson — gave credit to his offensive line for giving him the opportunity to rack up 110 yards rushing and 83 yards in the air. When the play breaks and the crowd goes into a frenzy, Montgomery stays calm.

“We practice that stuff,” he said of the team’s scramble drill. “If someone gets in the backfield, I scramble, and the line knows what they need to do, and the wide receivers and those guys, they all know what to do, too. Practice, that’s mostly all it is.”

As the lights twinkled back on, Buening said his team will continue working on its passing game, establishing tempo and more.

“We just gotta keep working,” he said. “I think consistency is really our biggest issue right now. And we’re still trying to grow, still trying to mature. But we need to become a little bit more consistent in our practice habits, and I think when we get more consistent in our practice habits, then that’ll carry over to our game.”

Southridge will take on the Tell City Marksmen (2-3, 1-2) at Legion Field in Tell City on Friday, Sept. 21, at 7:30 p.m.




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