YORKTOWN, IND - The clash between the two Hoosier Heritage Conference (HHC) rivals, Yorktown (4-3) and Pendleton Heights (5-2), was set to be an entertaining matchup in the final home game of the season for the Tigers.
The Arabians came out swinging and their game plan was clear from the start. It was going to be a grind-it-out type of game. Pendleton used a heavy dose of the ground game on their opening drive. After multiple short-yardage gains, senior Dresden Roberts broke a long touchdown run to open the scoring for Pendleton.
After getting punched in the mouth early, the Tigers looked to answer back with a score of their own. However, it was to no avail.
Yorktown proceeded to go three and out. To make matters worse, the Tigers had their ensuing punt blocked and returned for a touchdown This gave Pendleton a commanding 14-0 lead at the end of the first quarter.
“They grabbed the momentum right away and it was the first game all year where we haven’t been competitive in all phases,” Tigers head coach Mike Wilhelm said.
The home team seemed to be jolted by the early shock from the Arabians. The Tigers’ defense stiffened late in the first half and got a much-needed stop to halt the momentum for Pendleton.
The ensuing drive for Yorktown was slow, but it was their best of the half. Senior Ayden Ewing punched in the Tigers’ only score from two yards out. Ewing would end the game with 50 yards and a touchdown on the night.
Despite gaining momentum to end the first half, the Tigers came out flat to open the 2nd with an early 3 and out and an interception off a tipped pass. The Arabians' defense was stout throughout the game..
“They showed us what we expected,” said senior quarterback Mason Moulton. “They just outplayed us up front and took away our passing game.”
Pendleton switched things up in the second half and looked to the skies, trying to open up their passing attack on the Tigers. However, there wasn’t much space to be found in Yorkown’s secondary, which held the Arabians to just 62 yards passing on the night.
Despite some lackluster success in the air for Pendleton, the ground game was still just as prevalent as in the first half. The Arabians rushed for just shy of 200 yards in the game.
Thanks to some costly mistakes by Yorktown and some unfortunate penalties, Pendleton was able to capitalize on great field position multiple times throughout the second half and never looked back.
The Arabians continued to push their lead and contain the Tigers’ offense on their way to a convincing conference road win with a score of 31-7.
Yorktown, now coming off of two tough losses at home, is looking to rebound in its regular season finale against Mt. Vernon (3-4).
“We have to come back and get a win and show what we can do,” Ewing said. “We need to play our best at this point.”
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