Indians win second straight
Pontiac was looking to end the season with a two-game winning streak, which meant winning the road. The Indians did this in relatively easy fashion by dumping host Rantoul 22-6 in an Illini Prairie Conference tilt Friday night.
The victory ends Pontiac's season at 3-6 and leaves the Eagles winless at 0-9.
“Finishing with two wins, finally get this win on the road, was good for us,” PTHS head coach Alan Kuchefski said.
Pontiac was able to move the ball, but most of the fields were short, leaving the Indians with not a lot of available yards. But even so, it took some time to get that first offensive score.
The defense got the Tribe on the board first with a safety. After stalling on its second possession, Pontiac punted, pinning Rantoul at the 8 yard line. A bad snap on the second play resulted in a 12-yard loss and a safety as Peyton Cramer tackled Luke Zech in the end zone with 2:47 left in the first period.
Pontiac got the ball after the free kick at the Eagles' 49 and marched to paydirt on the following possession.
It took nine plays and was a mix of run and pass. Quarterback Wyatt Griffith connected with Cramer twice on the drive for a total of 31 yards, including a 12-yard gain to the Rantoul 2 as time ran out on the opening frame.
Justin Grieff took his third carry in the drive on the first play of the second period for a 2-yard touchdown and an 8-0 Pontiac lead.
The one long drive for the Indians was somewhat misleading as the play went for 64 yards. The drive came after PTHS stopped the Eagles at the Tribe's 26.
Griffith ran a quarterback draw for seven yards before connecting with Cobi Parra for that 64-yard gainer. Parra caught the short pass and was seemingly bottled up, but he made a move, broke a tackle and raced down the sideline to the Rantoul 3.
Grieff did the honors on the next play for a 3-yard touchdown and a 14-0 Indians lead, where it stayed until the third quarter, when the defense came through with another score.
Grieff finished the night all three Pontiac touchdowns and accounted for 163 yards of offense. The Indians finished with 290 total yards. Griffith was 8 of 17 passing for 153 yards and a TD.
Pontiac's first points of the second half were like the first — a safety. A bad snap sent Rantoul quarterback Keddrick Terhune into the end zone, where he could not escape a tribe of Indians.
“The defense capitalized, they did their job. The defense played so well tonight,
Kuchefski said. “The only score they gave up was because the offense put them in a bad position.”
This came with 7:04 left in the third quarter and made it 16-0. Pontiac added the lead a little more than two minutes later with its third TD.
Griffith hit Grieff for a 6-yard score with 4:50 remaining in the frame to cap a seven-play drive that covered 49 yards.
The one Rantoul score came after the Indians turned the ball over at their own 27. The Eagles needed five plays and a PTHS penalty to find the end zone. Terhune ran a keeper for 2 yards with 3:26 left.
“It would have been nice if we would have been able to (put together some longer drives),” Kuchefski said. “It seemed we would get some positive yards and we would get bogged down.
“They lined up in a 6-2, something we hadn't really prepared for. I got a little conservative in some of the play-calling. I'm glad we walked away with a 'W.'”
Parra finished with just 24 rushing yards but had two catches for 70 yards. Cramer added two catches for 31 yards.