ELNORA – For nearly the entire first half the North Daviess offense couldn’t get in gear, but one play changed all that in a hurry.
North Daviess senior tailback Colton Lengacher ran over, around and through the Washington (0-4) defense on his way to another monster game, totaling three touchdowns in the Cougars’ 47-6 Homecoming victory, which gave North Daviess its first win for the Highway 57 Helmet at home and only third win in the rivalry.
North Daviess (3-1) held a slim 8-6 lead with nine seconds to play in the second quarter, and nearly everyone in attendance expected the Cougars to run the ball out and take their two-point lead into halftime.
North Daviess coach Scotty Helms had other ideas. Brady Helms ran a play action rollout to the right and found junior tight end Jordan Allen down the right sideline for a 50-yard touchdown to take a 15-6 lead and sapped all the momentum from the Hatchets.
“The throw right before the half was obviously a big turning point in the game,” sais North Daviess coach Scotty Helms. “Things had moved pretty slow up to the point and they had really done a really good job controlling possession in the second quarter. We really had intentions of getting a first down and maybe go for it and as things progressed we decided to take one more shot and Brady (Helms) made a good throw and Jordan Allen made a great catch and then made a great move to get into the end zone. Jordan Allen really did a lot to get us that momentum.”
The Cougars took the ball to start the second half and never looked back. Lengacher ran for a 65-yard touchdown on the first play of the second half to extend the lead to 21-6. After a Washington three-and-out, Lengacher busted out for a 61-yard run and the next play Doug Bays scored the fourth North Daviess touchdown of the night from 20 yards out.
“We talked at halftime about after kicking off to start the second half and get a three-and-out and try to make it closer by putting a score on the board, and the very first play from scrimmage they run a 65-yard touchdown and we were done after that,” said Washington coach Kelly Brashear. “We just have to get a lot better.”
Washington was forced into another three-and-out by the North Daviess defense and Helms found Doug Bays for his second touchdown of night on a 38-yard throw and catch. Washington fumbled away the ensuing kickoff and Lengacher scored his third touchdown of the night to push the lead to 40-6 with three minutes to play in the third quarter.
Logan Turpin added a seven-yard touchdown run to push the lead to 47-6. Lengacher was the star of the Cougar back field again with 252 rush yards and three touchdowns. Helms completed 4 of his 5 passes for 91 yards and two touchdowns.
The game was tied at zero after one quarter with both defenses dominating the line of scrimmage. Lengacher’s three-yard touchdown gave North Daviess an 8-0 lead early in the second quarter, and Washington answered with its only scoring drive of the game, which saw quarterback Jake Brashear find Max Lancaster for a one-yard touchdown catch. Hatchet running back Jaden Arvin topped 300 yards on the ground in last week’s loss to Princeton, but he couldn’t get going against the Cougar defense.
The Highway 57 Helmet game which has been dominated since its inception in 2003 saw North Daviess win the game at home for the first time in the rivalry’s history, which is a source of great pride for Helms and the Cougars.
“It means the world to this football team and the world to these seniors to win it here at home,” Helms said. “It has been a series that we just haven’t played very well in and Washington has had a lot to do with that. They’ve had some teams that were just better than us. To finally get the helmet back and win one on our home field is great.”