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The Daily Register - Harrisburg, IL
  • Prep Football: Harrisburg holds off Du Quoin

  • Bulldogs win 7-6 to move to 2-0 on season
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  • If history has taught us anything, it's that when Du Quoin and Harrisburg hook up on the gridiron the game never lacks drama.
    Friday night at Van Metre Field was no different as more history was made.
    On a rainy, windy night, Harrisburg was able to hold onto a 7-6 victory on the Indians home turf as they improved to 2-0 on the year, making it the second straight season they have done so and just the third time since 2000.
    As for the Indians, they have now lost four straight to the Bulldogs and have lost five straight home games for the first time since 1965. Du Quoin's 0-2 start is the school's worst in nearly 30 years.
    "The weather was unbelievable, I can't believe it turned out like this," said Harrisburg head coach Jason Roper. "Credit both teams, I thought both teams played great and both of them overcame some adversity in playing in the weather the way it was. We were just lucky enough to come away with the win."
    To add fuel to the Du Quoin fire, the Indians had three turnovers against the Bulldogs, including two fumbles and a Brenden Fred interception on the Indians' opening drive at the Harrisburg 24 yard line.
    Statistically, Harrisburg had 63 total plays to just 31 by Du Quoin, limiting the Indians to a total of 154 yards and nine first downs. To boot, Du Quoin had 10 penalties for 70 yards.
    "In weather like this, you're going to have some turnovers," Roper said. "We were fortunate to get one where we had a short field to work with and get a score."
    Harrisburg won on a third quarter run by Dylan Hathaway as the senior bulldozed his way in from three yards out with 1:33 to play, while Ryne Roper provided the extra point.
    The winning score was set up on a pass rush from defensive end Gabe Ogelsby, who forced Fred out of the pocket, stripping him of the ball and allowing Austin Eldridge to fall on the fumble.
    Harrisburg took over at the Du Quoin 25-yard line, using Hathaway on four of the six plays to crack the end zone.
    Hathaway was so huge for the Bulldogs, finishing with 32 carries for 125 yards on the ground that Harrisburg could have hitched a wagon to the 5-foot-8, 215-pound back and rediscovered the west.
    "He's a senior and towards the end of the game there, we knew he would hold onto it and he did a nice job of running hard, especially at the end of the game whenever everyone else was tired and I'm proud of him for that," Roper said.
    Trailing Harrisburg 7-0 to start the fourth quarter, Du Quoin took over on downs against Harrisburg from their own 12 yard line.
    Page 2 of 2 - The Indians took advantage of some big plays, getting a 21-yard scamper by Shayne Baxter and a 29-yard completion from Fred to Travis Chapman. However, all hope seemed to be lost for the Indians as back-to-back penalties set Du Quoin back, facing a third-and-15 from the 42-yard line. Baxter was able to pick up 11 yards, setting up a fourth-and-4 at the Harrisburg 31 yard line when Fred took the quarterback keeper up the gut from for the score at the 7:37 mark. Fred was then brought in for the PAT and his kick was wide right.
    Harrisburg's ensuing drive resulted in five plays, where the sixth was fumbled by Hathaway on a third-and-one at their own 42 yard line, resulting in a recovery by the Indians.
    With 4:41 to work with, Du Quoin went back to work, but were repeatedly met by Bulldogs at the line of scrimmage. Baxter had a loss of four yards and one yard on back-to-back plays. Fred then overthrew Jonah Spencer on a fourth-and-15 at the Harrisburg 49. On the next play, Ogelsby once again met Fred in the backfield preventing him from making a throw and turning the ball over on downs.
    "I told the guys at the end of the game that our offensive and defensive lines played great," Roper said. "I was really proud of our kids' maturity level there at the end of the game to be able to move the ball, get some first downs and run some clock. I think it just shows that our seniors stepped up there and did a nice job for us.
    Harrisburg 00 00 07 00 - 07
    Du Quoin 00 00 00 06 - 06
    Scoring Drive
    Third Quarter
    HBG - Hathaway 3 run (Roper kick), 1:33
    Fourth Quarter
    DQ - Fred 31 run (kick failed), 7:37
    Team Totals
    HBG DQ
    First Downs 17 9
    Total Yards 227 154
    Rushing-Yards 56-204 30-98
    Passing 2-7-0 3-11-1
    Passing Yards 23 56
    Fumbles-lost 2 2
    Penalties 4-35 10-70
    Individual Statistics
    RUSHING - HBG: Hathaway 32-125, Younger 8-50, Henshaw 8-19, Bebout 2-5, Smith 1-3, Roper 5-2. DQ: Baxter 18-74, Youngman 6-16, Fred 5-11, Smith 1-(-3).
    PASSING - HBG: Roper 2-7-0-23. DQ: Fred3-11-1-56.
    RECEIVING - HBG: Henshaw 2-23. DQ: Dalton 1-14, Donoghue 1-14, Youngman 1-13, Chapman 1-29.
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