SCHEDULES BY TEAM
BRONCHO TEAM ON
GOLDEN BRONCHO CLUB
BOOSTER CLUB INFO
ATHLETIC AWARDS LIST
HALL OF FAMERS
DIRECTIONS TO :
Zionsville stifles Lafayette Jeff in opener, 14-7
August 26, 2013Lafayette Jefferson High School
Lafayette Jeff’s defense had waited years for a performance like this.
Flying to the ball. Making solid contact at the line of scrimmage. Coming up with crucial plays on late-down, short-yardage situations.
Friday night at Zionsville, the Broncho defense did everything possible to secure Lafayette Jeff’s first season-opening victory in five years. But a one-dimensional offense and special teams shortcomings spoiled the defense’s coming-out party, and the Eagles held on for a 14-7 Hoosier Crossroads Conference victory at St. Vincent Health Stadium.
“It’s really frustrating, because we were this close,” said Broncho senior safety Woody Archibald, who contributed a third-quarter interception. “They’re ranked No. 4 in the state, so it would have been a shocker back home.”
Lafayette Jeff did not score until Matt Johnson’s 64-yard touchdown run with 8.2 seconds left. Zionsville’s defensive front harassed Jeff’s inexperienced offensive line each time Johnson dropped back to pass, rendering the Bronchos one-dimensional.
Johnson finished with 114 yards on 18 carries, and fellow Ball State recruit Darian Green added 78 yards on 19 carries. But Jeff produced just four second-half first downs, including two on its final possession in the final minute.
Three first-half trips into the red zone yielded zero points as Alex Baker missed two field goals and had another blocked. The Bronchos netted minus-2 yards on seven first-half red zone plays.
“Tonight we just weren’t able to finish offensively,” said Johnson, who completed 5 of 9 passes for 38 yards. “The defense did a great job. We’re going to watch film on Saturday and fix the problem of not being able to finish and hopefully come out on top against Harrison.”
Lafayette Jeff’s defense limited Zionsville to 170 total yards, and held the Eagles without a first down for a 16-minute stretch from the first quarter into the third. Irving Madden recorded two tackles for loss, and defensive backs Mitchell Sterner and Sam Collins contributed multiple big plays in pass coverage.
After a scoreless first half, Archibald’s diving interception of Zionsville’s Joshua Hinkle at the Jeff 40 seemed to give the Bronchos momentum. Jeff drove to the Zionsville 37, but Johnson’s errant pitch to Green was scooped up by the Eagles’ Blake Kocher and returned to the Jeff 34.
Matt Penola scored on a 13-yard run five plays later to put Zionsville up, 6-0.
“That was big for our offense to get going,” Zionsville senior defensive end Nick Maines said. “We hadn’t been able to get anything going, but for them to fumble it right away like that was a big momentum change for us.”
Maines also blocked a Jeff punt with less than six mnutes to play, then ran it in himself from 1 yard out with 3:22 left. After Johnson’s touchdown run and Eric King’s point-after kick halved the Ziosnville lead, Hinkle recovered the onside kick to seal the Eagles’ fifth straight victory over Jeff.
“Tonight, you saw a lot of emotion out here, some guys crying at the end of the game,” Jeff coach Andy Kennedy said. “They’re finally seeing where we always harp on those little things. In a 41-20 game you might not see those little things if you’re a player; you think, ‘Hey, it’s out of control.’
“But a 7-0 game, 0-0 halftime, now they understand. I think that’s why they were so brokenhearted, because we’re so close. We’re right there.”
ZIONSVILLE 14, LAFAYETTE JEFF 7