Tanagers score 14-13 victory by Jim Prosser The Tanagers answered the challenge of overcoming multiple injuries to key regulars last Thursday, Sept. 27 at Crane-Youngworth Field in Yankton, and pulled off an improbable 14-13 victory over a perennial top class 11A football team in the Bon Homme Cavaliers.
Playing control football on offense and an intense defense, the Tanagers scored first, using an eight-play, 62-yard, 4:30- minute drive and led 7-0 after one quarter.
A lapse of concentration allowed the Cavaliers two TDs in the second quarter � one on a 34-yard pass play, and the other on a 72-yard punt return. With that, the Tanagers found themselves on the short end of a 13-7 halftime score.
For the Tanagers, the first drive of the second half covered 67 yards on 16 plays using up more than 9:22 minutes as back-up running back B.J. Campbell scored on a nine-yard run, which ultimately resulted in the final 14-13 win.
Bon Homme's statistics show Chad Hovorka as the leading ground gainer with 47 yards and a punt return of 72 yards for a TD, and Joey Bures completing five of eight passes for 58 yards and a touchdown (Jason Humpal was the receiver). Mike Sestack led all tacklers with 14 and Shawn Lewis had 12 stops.
Offensive statistics for Vermillion: Campbell rushed 19 times for 82 yards and one TD; Oliver Hope scored one TD and rushed 15 times for a 39-yard total; Kellen Cusick gained 66 yards on 10 carries; Ben Bazemore completed one of three passes to Nick Olson for 11 yards.
Vermillion's defensive statistics were led by Clint Christensen with eight tackles, one for an eight-yard loss and a pass break-up. Bart Miller had seven tackles and Adam Mount and Jeff Brevik had six tackles each. Brevik also had a pass breakup and handled the kicking chores, including two 50-yard kickoffs, and 2 extra points. John Holoch, Drew Lawrence and Cusick had four tackles each and Oliver Hope had three tackles. Several others had one or two stops, but what was probably the biggest was the extra point block made by Brett Jepsen.
First quarter: VHS � Hope on a one-yard run (Brevik kick) 5:32.
Second quarter: BHS � Humpal on a 34-yard pass from Bures (Hovorka kick) 4:09; Hovorka on a 72-yard punt return (kick blocked) 2:50.
Third quarter: VHS � Campbell on an eight-yard run (Jeff Brevik kick) 2:31.
VHS coach Gary Culver was pleased with his team's efforts.
"It was a tremendous second half of football demonstrated by our team," he said. "We finally put everything together � offense, defense and specialty teams."
Culver was particularly happy with the Tanager offense.
"It was pleasing to be able to control the football offensively like we did in the second half," he said. "Our offensive line did a great job controlling the line of scrimmage in the second half."
Culver also had praise for the Tanagers' defensive side.
"It's not too often that you can hold a team like Bon Homme to 10 offensive plays and 18 total yards in offense in a half," he said.
"Our specialty teams played a big role in the second half of the game also," Culver continued. "It was a big win for the team � specially the way we did it."
The Tanagers will now take a 4-2 record into their game against the Beresford Watchdogs (2-4) on Oct. 5 in Beresford. Kickoff is set for 7:30 p.m.
Culver hopes the Tanager momentum will carry over from the Bon Homme game.
"Our next opponent, the Beresford Watchdogs, have had some injuries and some tough luck this season, but we know they treat the Vermillion game like it was the Super Bowl," Culver said. "We hope that some of the momentum that we had in the second half against Bon Homme will carry over to this game against the Watchdogs. We will have to be ready to play all four quarters on Friday night."