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The Journal Gazette

Saturday, September 16, 2017 10:30 pm

Snider 52, Homestead 31

Snider, Covington run past Homestead in Indy

MARK AMBROGI | For The Journal Gazette

INDIANAPOLIS – Snider senior running back Christian Covington would be fired up to play rival Homestead anyway. Yet playing in the home of the Indianapolis Colts added to his enthusiasm.

“It’s a great atmosphere, so it made it that much more intense to be playing against them,” Covington said.

Covington scored four touchdowns in Class 6A No. 3 Snider’s 52-31 victory over 6A No. 10 Homestead Saturday night in SAC action at Lucas Oil Stadium. Covington had scoring runs of 13-, 15- and two 1-yard scores.

However, it was his touchdown that got away for Covington that put the Panthers (5-0) up for good over Homestead (4-1) at 28-21 in the second quarter. After an 18-yard run, Covington fumbled as he was going in the end zone and teammate David Nakasen recovered in the end zone.

“He had my back,” Covington said. “I made a mental mistake, but I got to have a short memory about it.”

Covington did, scoring two more touchdowns and finishing with 196 yards on 29 carries.

A bad snap led to the Panthers defensive lineman Lawrence Johnson recovering the ball on the Homestead 1. Covington scored to put the Panthers ahead 35-21.

Snider added a 42-yard field goal by Jack James to lead 38-21 with one second left in the half. The Panthers had gotten the ball back when Homestead had a bad snap on a punt and couldn’t get it off, giving the ball up in its own territory.

Snider quarterback Michael Haupert rushed for 115 yards. He completed just 3 of 9 passes, but one was a 78-yard touchdown pass to Michael Ledo for the game’s final score in the fourth.

“Our kids were excited to play at the start, executed very well, got a three-and-out on defense and got two quick scores,” Panthers coach Kurt Tippmann said. “They’re a good team. They have a good offense and they came back.”

Tippmann said the whole key was the end of the second, scoring the final 10 points off the fumble and Homestead’s bad snap on the punt.

“(Covington) ran the ball very well and offensive line did a great job, very physical,” Tippmann said. “Michael threw the ball when we needed him to and he did a good job running it, too. He did a good job getting us in and out of plays we wanted to see, and he did a good job making those decisions at the line of scrimmage.”

Homestead senior quarterback Jiya Wright ran for 154 yards on 27 carries, including four touchdown runs. Wright completed 19 of 30 passes for 213 yards. His favorite target was Trevin Taylor, who had nine catches for 142 yards.

“I saw some good things and some bad things,” Homestead coach Chad Zolman said. “We’ll learn from this and get better. It was a test to see where we’re at.”

Zolman agreed the miscues at the end of the second quarter were huge.

“Those are things you can’t do if you need to win a playoff game,” Zolman said.

However, Zolman was proud of the effort.

“I was proud we played for all four quarters,” Zolman said. “What a great experience this was, playing in this venue is a special opportunity.

Spartans running back Keion Reeder, who had 41 yards on 10 carries, suffered a injury in the fourth quarter. He needed help to walk off field.

“We’ll get him checked and go from there,” Zolman said.