The Carbondale Terriers scored 21 points in the first half against the preseason South Seven Conference favorite Centralia Orphans. However, giving up 28 points in that same first half, isn’t the way to win conference games.
Friday’s 42-21 loss again revolved around another talented quarterback. This time it was Javon Williams, who ran and passed for 357 of the Orphans’ 460 total yards and accounted for five of its six touchdowns.
Nevertheless, Terrier Head Coach Bryan Lee was upbeat about his team’s defense — especially in the first half.
“It’s the best effort we have shown in the three years I’ve been at Carbondale,” Lee said. “Especially in the second quarter where we grabbed a lead.”
The score was 14-14 in that second quarter, when the Terrier outside linebacker Zee Johnson picked up a bad hike to the Orphan punter and then sailed 27 yards into the Centralia end zone to make it 21-14 Terriers.
“In that second quarter, we really competed and played defense well,” Lee said.
The Terriers stopped Williams through the initial part of the second — limiting him to 2 to 4 yards a carry instead of double digits. That didn’t last long however.
The Orphans came back with a vengeance in the latter part of the second period to score twice and take the seven-point lead.
In the first half, the stats were relatively even between the two clubs. Centralia had 307 total yards and the Terriers had 234 yards (101 rushing and 133 passing).
However, it was the two turnovers by the Orphans that kept them from pulling away from the Terriers even more by halftime.
Carbondale QB Seth Germann threw for 194 yards and a touchdown, but the Terriers’ rushing game went south after the halftime break.
Carbondale finished with 82 rushing yards for the game. That means they ended up rushing 11 times in the second half for a negative 13 yards. Germann threw for 61 yards in the second half.
It was mistakes that hurt Carbondale in the second half more than anything. Mistake that led to two more Orphan touchdowns.
“In the second half, it was two turnovers — both of which hurt us at crucial times,” Lee said.
Lee was chipper about the Terriers’ prospects — especially for this 7 p.m. game this Friday at Bleyer Field against Cahokia.
“If we can play like we did in that second quarter, we can play with any team left on our schedule,” Lee said.
The Dawgs prevented the Orphans from reaching its 50-point a game average. But there is a mathematical wall coming up that Lee’s team must contemplate. No high school team gets into the Illinois High school playoff with more than four losses.
The Dawgs at 1-3 have little margin for error in their next five games. They have to go at least 4-1 to do so, and games against Belleville Althoff, Marion and Harrisburg loom ahead as roadblocks.