Coming into Friday evening’s critical Hoosier Crossroads Conference game with Hamilton Southeastern at Lucas Oil Stadium the Zionsville defense had been incredibly stout, ranking 20th in the state at only nine points per game.
Someone forgot to inform the Royals of that fact.
Hamilton Southeastern ran up more than 500 yards of total offense and hung half a hundred on the previously stout Eagle defense, winning its seventh-straight game over Zionsville 50-35.
“Almost anything that could go wrong did with the defense in the first half,” Zionsville coach Larry McWhorter said. “We didn’t have any major penalties or too many men on the field, but our mindset
wasn’t right. I was really surprised by that.”
A sign of how bad things would be occurred on HSE’s first play from scrimmage.
After the Eagles successfully downed a punt at the Royals’ (2-2) three yard line, quarterback Ross Risley connected with receiver Cameron Polk over the middle for a 97-yard touchdown pass.
The Eagles (3-1) would then go three-and-out and a short punt gave HSE great field position at the Zionsville 30 yard line. Two plays later the Royals were in the end zone again when Ryan Ripp scored on a 19-yard run to make it 14-0 with 6:17 left in the first quarter.
After getting stunned by those quick scores the Zionsville offense did not give up. The Eagles were able to march 80 yards in 13 plays and cracked the scoreboard on the final play of the first quarter when Parker Dunshee scored on a six-yard run.
See Wednesday's Times Sentinel for more on this story.