JOHN CURTIS - Daily Union Sports Editor
SHELBYVILLE, IL. —
Shelbyville football was 2-7 last year and 0-2 to start this season. But now the Rams are 5-2 and are playoff eligible, after outlasting Sullivan-Okaw Valley on Friday, 35-28.
"It wasn't pretty," said Ram coach Stan Wienke. "We made some mistakes, but we didn't quit. We've gotta get stop our bad focus spots. But we have 5 wins. We've got to get 1 of the next 2."
Once again, the Rams scored earlly and often and that gave them the edge, as they had to outlast the Redskins.
Shelbyville took the opening kick-off and drov 60 yards for the opening score in less than 3:00. Running back Jordan Brown started running for two yards and QB Tucker Schwengel threwto Luke Hatfield for 7 yards. Schwengel ran for a 1/2 yard on second effort, then ran on 4th and less than a yard across midfield for a 1st down.
Brown then broke through the line and used his downfield blockers to ramble 43 yards to the Sullivan 6 yard line. Schwengel then ran 6 yards for the TD. The extra-point kick failed, but Shelby was up 6-0 with 9:08 in the 1st.
Sullivan came right back, starting from their ownb 31 yard line anddriving 79 yards for a score on their first drive. Caden May ran fir 6 yards and a 1st down. Vail ran a counter play for 11 yards and another 1st down. On 2nd and 11, Vail ran for 18 yards to the Shelby 29.
Vail ran for another 12 yards, then 3 yards, then 12 yards for a TD. Andy Brown kicked the extra-point and SOV was ahead, 7-6 with 5:14 in the 1st.
Jordan Brown then scooped up a short kick and ran from the Ram 30 to the SOV 40. He ran from scrimmage for 6 yards. Jake Keown ran down the sidelines on a pass play and was shoved out of bounds while the ball was in the air and picked up a pass interference call for a 1st down at the SOV 20.
On 2nd and 10 Schwengel threw to Hatfield on a slant across the middle for a touchdown. However, the Rams were called for holding. They threw an incomplete pass on 2nd and 26, then came right back to Hatfield on the same slant pattern and he caught it again, this time for a 36 yards TD. Shelby called time-out and set up a 2-point conversion. Schwengel ran it in on a student body right for a 14-7 lead with 3:34 left in the 1st.
Josh Hicks kicked off and Sullivan had to start from their own 33 yard line. Hatfield stopped SOV for one yard. Luke McConnell stopped them for no gain. Jordan Brown got a sack forcng 4th and 18 and a punt.
Shelbyville took the punt and started from their 39. On 3rd and 6, Schwengel threw to Darin Breeden for a 13 yard 1st down to end the 1st quarter.
Luke Hatfield had to punt three plays later from the Sullivan 38. The ball looked to carry into the end zone, but Jake Keown raced down on punt coverage and swatted the balll back in play. It was downed at the SOV 2 yard line. That set up a huge Ram defensive play.
Backed up against their own goal line, SOV QB Frerichs took the snap in the end zone and Jordan Brown broke through the line to nail Frerichs for a safety and a 16-7 lead.
SOV had to punt right back to the Rams. Tyler Hendryx brought it to the Ram 48. After two incomplete passes, Schwengel scrambled for 21 yards and a 1st down. A holding penalty gave Shelby 1st and 23 at the SOV 45.
After a sack the Rams had 2nd and 31 at their own 47. Schwengel threw an out pass to Jake Keown who shook off a would be tackler, went 18 yards and out of bounds. He was hit late and that tacked on a penalty that took the ball to the SOV 17.
Shelby faced 3rd and 9 and Schwengel had to scramble to his right and dump the ball off to Keown for a 13 yard 1st down to the SOV 3. Keown cught a short pass wide left and got to the 1 yard line. Schwengel ran the ball across the goal on th next play for a 22-7 lead with 5:52 in the half.
The Rams called time to set up a 2 point play and try to go up by 17 points, requiring three scores. However, a false start moved the ball back and changin the play. The resulting pass failed.
Sullivan had time to score, but Keown got a 2 yard run sack, Jordan Brown got another sack on a bad snap. Facing 3rd and 19 from their own 25, SOV looked to go deep. No one as open and Frerichs broke through the line to run for 27 yards to the Ram 48.
After an incomplete pass, Chase Jackson, stoppeed Vail after a 3 yard run. An incomplete pass Shwengel threw to Breedn for 5 yards.
Schwengel was sacked and Brown ran for just 1 yard. But Schwengel founr Breeden for a 25 yard pass and a 1st down. A holding penalty was called on the next play and Shelbywas behind the chains again. A wide-open pass was dropped. then Schwengel was sacked.
On 4th and 30, Shelby would ount, but not until SOV called time with 1:16 in the half. Hatfiled kicked from insde the Ram 18 and the ball was downed at midfield.
Jordan Brown had another 4 yard sack. On a long pass, the receiver slipped and Keown intercepted the pass at the Ram 30 and ran it back to the 40 with 32.4 seconds in the half. Schwengel took a knee and a 22-7 lead into half-time.
SOV took the 2nd half kick-off to their own 47. May ran wide on 3rd and 2 for a 1st down at the Ram 42. Vail ran for a 1st down, but came out of the game with an injury. Frerichs ran for 7 yards, then had a man wide open in the corner of the end zone. But before the ball could get there, Hatfield raced over and picked off the pass at the Shelbyville 2 yard line.
Shelby had a 3 and out and hatfield punted from inside his 10 to the Shelby 45 where it was fair caught. Vail was back and ran for nine yards, then a 1st down at the Shelby 19.
After a QB run, Vail took a hit at the line and then burst for a 17 yard TD. Andy Brown kicked the extra points, cutting the Ram lead to 22-14.
Hendryx took the kick-off but just to the Ram 26. Schwengel scramble for five yards, but there was a block in the back penalty. A dropped pass made it 2nd and 14. Shelby had to punt again.
The ball bounced off the return man's shoulders and over his head. Keown was right there, picked it up on the hop and ran it into the end zone. However, the refs said the ball couldn't be advanced on a muffed punt.
It was Shelby ball at the SOV 25. Schwengel threw to Breeden for seven yards. On the next play, Schwengel looked to be sacked, but he broke tackles and broke free for an 18 yard TD run with 2:17 in the 3rd. The 2-point pass failed and Shelby was up by two scores again, 28-14.
SOV started at heir own 35 after the kick-off went out of bounds. The Rams QB was stopped on a run. Hicks stopped the run at the line again. SOV threw an incomplete pass, but an interference call gave SOV a 1st down. Vail ran for a 12 hyard 1st down to end the 3rd quarter.
On 2nd and 10, SOV threw deep and Hatfield picked off his second pass of the game. On 2nd and 12 from the Ram 7, Brown ran for a 25 yard gain. Schwengel then broke free for a 40 yard run to the SOV 28.
After a 3 yard Schwengel run, SOV's Andy Brown made a good play to break up a pass. On 4th and 8 from the SOV 25, Shelby called time-out and set up a play. Schwengel threw behind the line to Hatfield and he followed blocking for a 14 yard gain to the SOV 1. Schwengel ran it in on the next play with 8:23 left in the game. Patch's kick was good for a 35-14 lead.
SOV started from their 40 after the kick-off. SOV faced 4th and 1 and after a missed tackle at the line, Vail romped for a 52 yard TD with 6:11 left in the game. Andy Brown kicked the extra-point to trim the lead to 14, 35-21.
SOV tried an onside kick, but Hicks covered it. Brown ran for 15 yards to the SOV 35. On 4th and 8, Shelby called time with 3:35 to play. SOV sacked Schwengel and got the ball at their own 41 with 3:29 left.
A Ram defender stopped a run, but was called for leading with his helmet, giving SOV a 1st down on the penalty at the Ram 41. Vail ran for five yards, then McConnell stuffed a run. Frerichs threw across the middle on the next play and the receiver went right on into the end zone, for the 2nd SOV score in just over 4:00.
Brown kicked the extra-point and SOV was within one score, 35-28, with 1:59 to play in the game.
SOV tried another onside kick, but again it was covered by the Rams. On the first play Schwengel carried a host of tacklers for 17 yards to the SOV 43. Brown ran for two and SOV called time-out to stop the clock.
Schwengel ran for one yard and SOV called time again. On 3rd and 7, Hatfield ran around the end for a 1st down at the SOV 31. Schwengel ran for two yards and SOV called their final time-out with 1:03 left.
Schwengel ran for eight yards. on 3rd and 1 wit 38 seconds left, Schwengel took a knee and the last 22 seconds ticked away for the fifth Shelbyville win in a row.
Shelbyville (5-2) plays at Monticello next Friday.
Shelbyville 35, SOV 27
1st (9:08)- (S) Schwengel 6 yd run, kick no good, 6-0
1st (5:14)-(SOV) Vail 12 yd run, A. Brown kick good, 6-7
1st (3:34)-(S) Schwengel to Hatfield 32 yd pass, Schwengel run, 14-7
2nd (9:36)- (S) J. Brown safety, 16-7
2nd (5:52)-(S) Schwengel 1 yd run, pass no good, 22-7
3rd (4:39)-(SOV) Vail 17 yd run, A. Brown kick good, 22-14
3rd (2:17)-(S) Schwengel 18 yd run, pass no good, 28-14
4th (8:23)-(S) Schwengel 1 yd run, Patch kick good, 35-14
4th (6:11)-(SOV) Vail 52 yd run, A. Brown kick good, 35-21
4th (1:59)-(SOV) Frerichs pass 39 yds, kick good, 35-28
Ram stats: OFFENSE-324 yards; RUSHING-193 yards, 4 TDs; Schwengel 25/93 yards, 4 TDs; J. Brown 10/90 yards; Hatfield 1/10 yards; PASSING- 131 yards, TD; Breeden 5/55 yards; Hatfield 2/42 yards, TD; Keown 3/34 yards; TACKLES-J. Brown 13 (9 solo/4 assists), Hatfield 9 (5/4), Keown 8 (5/3), Hicks 5 (3/2), Barna 5 (1/4), Breeden 5 (2/3), Smithson 4 (1/3), #18 3 (0/3), #83 3 (2/1), McConnell 2 (1/1); #11 1 (0/1), #12 1 (0/1), #79 1 (0/1); INTERCEPTIONS-Hatfield 2, Keown 1; KICK-OFF RETURNS-McConnell 1 for 0 yds; Brown 1 for 39 yards; Hendryx 2 for 13 yards; Hicks 1 for 0 yards; #82 1 for 0 yards; PENALTIES-8 (4 holding, 1 false start, 1 block in the back, 1 pass interference, 1 leading with helmet; 1ST DOWNS-14 (3 Pass/10 run/2 penalties)