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TERRE HAUTE — Columbus North played Class 5A No. 6 Terre Haute North to a draw in the second half Friday night.
Unfortunately for the Bull Dogs, the game was practically over by that point.
The Patriots led 35-3 at halftime and went on to claim a 49-17 Conference Indiana victory, ending Columbus North’s modest two-game winning streak.
The two-hour trip to Terre Haute didn’t seem to faze the Bull Dogs (2-4, 2-2) in the game’s opening minutes. Terre Haute North (4-2, 2-2) tried a reverse on the opening kickoff, but Logan Fox stripped the ball from Jordan Moothery and returned it 12 yards to the 6. The Patriot defense held, and Collin Ebel booted a 30-yard field goal for an early 3-0 lead.
But things went downhill from there.
Terre Haute North tailback Ricky Brookins scored the first of his five first-half touchdowns and six for the game when he caught a 16-yard scoring pass from quarterback Chris Barrett II. The Bull Dogs stopped Terre Haute North on fourth-and-1 on the Patriots’ next series, but the victory was short-lived.
When Terre Haute North took over again, Brookins ran 49 yards for a touchdown and a 14-3 lead.
Brookins added three more touchdowns in the second quarter, including a 56-yard interception return.
Things went from bad to worse for the Bull Dogs to begin the second half. They failed to cover the kickoff, and Terre Haute North recovered at the 16. On the next play, Barrett hit Moothery for a touchdown, and the Patriots led 42-3 with only six seconds gone in the third quarter.
Columbus North received a positive jolt with a 52-yard kickoff return from Justin Huser. Three plays later, Michael Vogel hit Wes Moore on a hitch-and-go for a 16-yard touchdown strike.
Vogel and Moore hooked up again on a 6-yard touchdown with 6:44 left in the game to cut the lead to 42-17. But after a failed onside kick attempt, Brookins ran 55 yards on the first play for his sixth touchdown of the night.
“It’s another game of giving up big plays, and we don’t have explosive athletes to match that kind of a game,” North coach Tim Bless said.
Brookins finished with 182 yards on 13 carries. Josh Holt led the Bull Dogs with 113 yards on 24 carries.
Vogel finished 13 of 24 for 94 yards and two touchdowns, but threw four interceptions. Moore caught six passes for 45 yards.
“Our offense sustained more in the second half at the point of attack,” Bless said. “Our kids continued to block hard, and our runners continued to run hard.
“I knew our kids wouldn’t quit,” he said. “They’re a hard-working, hard-fighting bunch. We certainly did not play our best football tonight, but we also got beat by a top-notch program.”
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