By Mike Myers
WASHINGTON — The Washington Hatchets fought hard but in the end couldn’t match the firepower of one of Indiana’s best high school football teams as unbeaten Brownstown Central claimed a 62-30 Class 3A Sectional 31 win at Hatchet Hollow on Friday.
Washington (1-9) had one of its best outings of the season offensively, racking up nearly 400 yards of total offense and scoring the most points of any opponent to date against fourth-ranked Brownstown Central (10-0). But the Hatchets found out early in the second quarter just how explosive the Braves can be offensively.
After the teams traded scoring drives and were tied 7-7 heading into the second quarter, Brownstown Central took control of the contest by scoring three touchdowns in a span of 1:38 early in the second stanza.
Jacob Wilson, who caught a 10-yard scoring pass from Clay Brown in the first quarter, scored on a two-yard run with 9:27 left in the half for a 14-7 Brownstown lead. The Braves recovered a Jaden Arvin fumble on the Hatchets’ first play from scrimmage following that touchdown, and quickly went up 20-7 when Caleb Wischmeier rambled 29 yards on the next play.
On the kickoff following that score, Brownstown recovered a fumble by Dalton Devine, and two plays later John McKinney scored from 10 yards out to give the Braves a 27-7 lead with 7:49 left before halftime.
The two fumbles at critical times as well as 86 yards lost on nine penalties meant the Hatchets were often their own worst enemy according to coach Kelly Brashear.
“Penalties killed us tonight, and those turnovers. It just seemed like it just snowballed into negative things for about half a quarter,” said Brashear. “We went in at halftime down, we’re not a team that’s going to put points on the board fast, we like to grind it out.”
Another Wilson touchdown grab of a Brown pass, this time from 31 yards, plus Skyller Lewis’ fourth extra point of the half gave the Braves a 34-7 late in the second quarter.
But the Hatchets responded, moving downfield quickly on a drive that culminated with a five-yard touchdown run by Edrwin Revolorio. Austin Moody’s extra point cut the Brownstown lead to 34-14 with :21 left in the half.
Washington received the kick to open the second half and scored again when Revolorio capped a 8:45 drive with another five-yard run. Jake Brashear’s run for two points made the score 34-22 with 3:15 left in the quarter.
Brownstown Central, however, quickly eliminated any hopes of a Hatchet comeback, scoring a pair of touchdowns in the next 5:00, including a 41-yard pass from Brown to Wilson late in the third quarter and a 12-yard run Wischmeier early in the fourth quarter. Wischmeier added a 38-yard run later in the quarter, and a one-yard run by Lance Goecker in the last minute of play finished the scoring for the Braves.
The Hatchets dented the scoreboard in the final seconds as well on a 64-yard run by Brashear. Arvin carried the ball in for the two-point conversion to account for the last of the Hatchets’ 30 points.
Overall, the Hatchets finished with 387 yards of total offense, including 296 yards on the ground on 54 attempts. Arvin got the bulk of those carries, picking up 145 yards on 33 attempts. Arvin finished the 2013 season with 1,211 yards rushing, giving the senior the eighth best single season rushing total in school history. Revolorio added 37 yards on seven carries for what has been a very good senior running back tandem for the Hatchets.
“Had he (Arvin), like some of our backs in the past for three years, you would have probably seen some records being broken by this young man,” said Brashear. “What a kid. He just runs full bore every time he gets the football, as does Edrwin.
“Edrwin is just in a position where there aren’t a whole lot of offensive plays created for him, so he doesn’t carry the ball as much as Jaden,” said Brashear. “But they’re just two workhorses on offense for us.”
Brashear went for 54 yards on five carries for WHS, while Devine was the second leading Hatchet rusher with 60 yards on nine carries. Devine also added 132 yards on seven kickoff returns and 75 yards on four receptions.
But the Braves nearly topped 500 yards of total offense with 312 rushing yards and 143 yards through the air. Wilson picked up 52 yards rushing and 82 yards receiving, while Wischmeier was the top rusher with 97 yards on five attempts as Brownstown Central netted 455 yards of total offense.
The loss snapped a streak of seven straight opening round sectional victories for Washington. But the Hatchets finished the season playing their best according to their coach.
“At the end of the season, you want your team to be playing its best football, and we definitely were,” said Brashear. “Yeah, they got 62 points tonight, but they are a very good football team. And we were able to hang 30 points on a very good defensive football team. So there’s something to be proud of there.
“As a coach, all you want is for them to give you everything they’ve got, and they definitely did that tonight,” added Brashear. “Things didn’t go our way tonight, but I just love these kids, they were a fun group to coach.”