Richmond had various potential game-changing plays Friday night.
Mt. Vernon’s defense made sure the Red Devils didn’t have too many.
Richmond’s football season came to an end Friday night as the Marauders defeated the Red Devils 46-14 in the opening round of Indiana High School Athletic Association Class 4A Sectional 22.
The Marauders (7-3) advance to next week’s semifinal opposite Pendleton Heights, after the Arabians defeated Connersville 31-7 in their first-round game Friday.
Delta will play Greenfield-Central in the other semifinal after Delta defeated New Castle 27-7 and Greenfield bested Jay County 41-21.
“They’re a good team,” Richmond coach Matt Holeva said. “Early on, we had some opportunities that we didn’t capitalize on.”
The first of those came when Ron Sanders intercepted a pass on Mt. Vernon’s first possession, setting the Red Devils up for a potential scoring opportunity early in the game.
The Red Devils got to Mt. Vernon’s 4-yard line, but with the help of some penalties, could not score, eventually turning the ball over from the 10.
The Marauders marched down the field, and after Zac Montgomery broke for about 30 yards, he cut back in around the Richmond 4, trying to get a few extra yards, but was brought down, fumbling the ball with Richmond recovering.
Alex Barnett finally caught a pass and took it 29 yards to put the Marauders ahead 6-0 with 10:17 left in the first half, and Eric Jones rushed for a 7-yard touchdown to make it 12-0 at halftime.
Richmond recovered an onside kick to open the third quarter, but were quickly stopped.
“We did some nice things, but the inconsistencies kind of plagued us,” Holeva said. “We got behind the chains some of some penalties and that kind of stuff, but I was real proud that the guys fought there ’till the end.”
One of Richmond’s surprises was the return of senior running back Jawuan Claiborne, who got hurt in the third week of the season. He had nine carries for 20 yards, unofficially, and caught a 25-yard touchdown pass in the fourth quarter to put Richmond on the board.
Alston Bane had 23 completions for 310 yards, unofficially, and Dasean Jones made 12 catches for 197 yards.
“At the beginning of the game, I think Richmond was fresh. A lot of their guys play both ways, so I think that as the game went on, they got worn down a little bit,” Mt. Vernon coach Doug Armstrong said. “But at the beginning of the game, their big guys kind of pushed us around a little bit. Richmond was able to move the ball. When we got the ball, we were able to move it and we got two turnovers that really slowed us down and cost us in the first half.”
Sanders led Richmond’s running game with 14 carries for 47 yards, and Bane had eight for 28. Thomas Stanley caught a 6-yard touchdown pass and had five catches for 47 yards, while Sean Ferguson had two catches for 35 yards.
Montgomery scored on a 1-yard run late in the third quarter and Charles DeGraff returned an interception about 18 yards in the final minute of the third quarter.
Jones (5-yard run), Nathan Seifert (3-yard run) and Montgomery (63-yard run) each scored in the fourth quarter.
Unofficially, Montgomery had six completions for 85 yards, 37 of those yards to Barnett and 22 to Mitch McCarthy, and Jones led the running game with 120 yards on 19 carries.
Montgomery rushed for 28 yards on seven carries.
Richmond concludes the season with a 4-6 record, the first losing season in Holeva’s 13 years as head coach. He is 90-45 overall, including 29-22 in his five years at Richmond.
“That’s obviously not where we want to be, but I think our kids overcame a lot,” Holeva said. “We fought hard till the end. Despite the record, this was probably as enjoyable a bunch as anybody. They fought, they played till the end, they bought in. They’re a nice group of kids and it’s unfortunate it has to end the way that it did, but it’s a privilege that I’ve had the opportunity to coach them.”
Mt. Vernon defeated Pendleton Heights 28-9 in Week 6.
“We played Pendleton one time before, fairly competitive game,” Armstrong said. “We got some work to do back in our secondary, work to do cleaning up our turnovers.”
MARAUDERS 46, RED DEVILS 14
Mt. Vernon 0 12 13 21 – 46
Richmond 0 0 0 14 – 14
MV- Alex Barnett 29 pass from Zac Montgomery, 10:17 (kick blocked)
MV- Eric Jones 7 run, 3:38 (run stopped)
MV- Montgomery 1 run, 1:59 (Kraig Hancock kick)
MV- Charles DeGraff 18 interception return, :53.8 (run fails)
MV- Jones 5 run, 11:44 (Hancock kick)
RICH- Jawuan Claiborne 25 pass from Alston Bane, 10:10 (Alexis Shiplett kick)
MV- Nathan Seifert 3 run, 9:27 (Hancock kick)
RICH- Thomas Stanley 6 pass from Bane, 7:46 (Shiplett kick)
MV- Montgomery 63 run, 6:54 (Hancock kick)
First Downs- MV: 12; RICH: 17.
Rushes-Yards- MV: 28-163; RICH: 32-92.
Passing Yards- MV: 85; RICH: 310
Comp-Att-Int.- MV: 6-12-1; RICH: 23-44-1.
Fumbles-Lost- MV: 2-1; RICH: 0-0.
Punts-Avg.- MV: 1-36; RICH: 2-31
RUSHING- RICH: Sanders- 14-47; Claiborne 9-16; Bane 8-28; Stanley 1-1.
PASSING– RICH: Bane 23-44-310-2.
RECEIVING– RICH: Jones 12-197; Stanley 5-47; Claiborne 2-26; Sean Ferguson 2-39; Brice Brown 1-4.