Tanagers first playoff game Oct. 28 in DakotaDome By Parker Knox
Sports Writer Scoring on seven of its�? first eight possessions extending well into the fourth quarter, Harrisburg solidified its rightful claim as the best team in Region 2 of Class 11A football Friday with a 49-12 home victory over Vermillion. The Tanagersâ�?�? season record dropped to 4-3 overall and 1-2 in conference play heading into Thurs-dayâ�?�?s regular-season wind-up against the stateâ�?�?s best, West Central. Playoff pairings will be made official Saturday, but it is likely Vermillion will start the playoffs with a DakotaDome game Tuesday night against Lennox.�? The Tanagers need to match last year when they lost to Lennox in the regular season but knocked off the Orioles in the playoffs.�? Lennox defeated Vermillion two weeks ago, 26-7. That playoff game will, unless several totally unexpected things happen, be the last home appearance for 16 Tanager seniors, including Chris Cameron, Blaine Olson, Greg Anderson, Wyatt Hunter, Taylor Clark, Travis Jerred, Grant Lueders, Tony Thomas, Lance Hubert, Andrew Eidem, Mike Oberle, Cory Taggart, Kyle Nemec, Jeff Anglin, Joe Talley and J.R. Moore. â�?�?It was an extremely frustrating night for our team in Harrisburg,â�? said Coach Gary Culver.�? â�?�?We gave up too many big plays to them, especially on the defensive side and on our specialty teams.â�? He did credit the VHS offense for â�?�?doing a good job of moving the football on the ground against an extremely quick defensive unit.â�? Mike Oberle ran hard all night long and ended up with 123 yards in 22 times.�? Vermillionâ�?�?s season-long one-two punch of Oberle and Andrew Eidem disappeared when Eidem sustained an early injury and never returned to action, leaving Oberle with most of the ground gameâ�?�?s responsibility on his shoulders. On their first possession the Tigers, starting from their own 13-yard line, too only two plays to reach the 48 and then only one play to go the rest of the way.�? Joey Brown scored on a 52-yard run. After a three-and-out for Vermillion, Harrisburg, gaining big yardage on almost every play, moved to the left, moved to the right, went straight up the middle and went through the air.�? Not needing any help, the Tigers nevertheless got it from the Tanagers who gave them excellent field position on occasion. On its second possession, Harrisburg needed to go only 21 yards and did so in five plays, the touchdown coming from Adam McNamara from the three.�? A Tanager fumble set up the Tigers at their own 49 for their third possession, the only one of the first three quarters which did not result in a score.�? This time Cory Taggart intercepted a pass to temporarily stifle the Tiger onslaught. But a bad Tanager punt handed the ball over to Harrisburg on the Vermillion 18.�? McNamara scored again from the nine. Vermillionâ�?�?s only first-half score was set up by Kylen Freidelâ�?�?s 35-yard kickoff return.�? Oberle carried for major gains along the drive, and he scored from the 12. Harrisburg immediately answered in three plays, Jordan Fodness covering the final 51 yards to make the score 28-6 at halftime. The Tigers converted both of their third-period possessions.�? Preston Harris scored from the eight-yard line.�? Later, after a 56-yard kickoff return, a short Tiger march ended with Fodness scoring on a seven-yard pass from McNamara.�? Vermillionâ�?�?s best possession of the game saw Oberle charging ahead through Harrisburg defenders as if he didnâ�?�?t know the score was 42-6.�? The drive ended with a 22-yard run by Freidel for the score. With 5:27 left and most starters still playing, Harrisburg scored on a 10-yard run by Brown. Oberle and Nick Mart led the Tanager defense with seven solo tackles apiece.�? Grant Lueders and Bennett Johnson had five solo tackles each. First quarter: H â�?�? Joey Brown 52-yard run (Connor Auch kick), 5:41. H â�?�? Adam McNamara three-yard run (Auch kick), 1:35. Second quarter: H â�?�? McNamara nine-yard run (Auch kick), 8:08. V â�?�? Mike Oberle 13-yard run (kick failed), 3:58. H â�?�? Ryan Pingrey 30-yard run (Gearman kick), 0:16. H â�?�? Jordan Fodness 51-yard run (Auch kick), 1:56. Third quarter: H â�?�? Preston Harris eight-yard run (Auch kick), 7:01. H â�?�? Fodness seven-yard pass from McNamara (Auch kick), 3:44. Fourth quarter: V â�?�? Kylen Freidel 22-yard run (kick failed), 8:42. H â�?�? Brown 10-yard run (Auch kick), 5:27. Individual rushing V â�?�? Oberle 22-123, Freidel 9-39, Andrew Eidem 12-20, Tanner Mart 1-4, Earl Kiertzner 5-(-13), Lance Hubert 1-(-18). H â�?�? Brown 6-94, Harris 15-87, Fodness 3-59, Jordan Titze 3-36, McNamara 7-26, Alex Hill 2-21, Talor Olson 1-10. Individual passing V â�?�? Kiertzner 0-1-0. H â�?�? McNamara 5-11-48-1. Individual receiving�? H â�?�? Fodness 2-22, Will Nelson 2-15, Alex Peterson 1-11. Tackles (solo/assist/total) V â�?�? Oberle 7-0-7, Nick Mart 7-0-7, Grant Lueders 5-0-5, Bennett Johnson 5-0-5, Travis Jerred 2-0-2, Joe Talley 2-0-2, Freidel 2-0-2, Tony Thomas 1-1-2, Cory Taggart 1-0-1, Tyler Husby 1-0-1, Andrew Eidem 1-0-1, Carson Sullivan 1-0-1, Kyle Nemec 1-0-1, Greg Anderson 1-0-1. Pass knockdowns V â�?�? Johnson 4, Taggart. Interception Taggart.