Slow and steady ends in win

Indianola on the drive against Dowling Catholic. 2011.

The Indianola Indians followed the same script as the 5 of their last 7 games. Start well, hold the opponent to only a few or no points, then see the opponent come to life late in the 3rd quarter and win it in the 4th. The exact thing Coach Eric Kluver was hoping against.

History repeats itself as Dowling Catholic came back for a 21-7 win Friday night at Simpson College’s Buxton Stadium.

Indianola would get out of the gate, keeping the football for 18 of the game’s first 22 plays, scoring on that last one when Kale Render found Chris Henry in the back of the endzone for a 7-0 lead. The Maroons had zero yards of offense in that stretch.

Coach Kluver called for the on-side kick, stunning the Dowling return team, and recovering the ball. That drive would stall in three plays before the Indians were forced to punt the football. A great punt to the Maroon 5 put the offense on alert. DC would punt, and watch the Indians drive all the way down to the Dowling 7 when Sam Herold picked up a fumble to change the momentum of the game.

Dowling Catholic would finally get a drive to move more 15 yards. The Maroons’ 3rd drive would feature Ben Goaley left, right and up the middle before an interception by Joey Gioffredi ended that possession. Goaley would end the night with 115 yards on 28 carries. He would top the 1,000 yard mark for the season, early in the 2nd quarter.

Indianola would hold the Maroons to 2-10 passing for 25 yards. Dan Hartlieb and Ryan Boyle each had a completion. Goaley’s74 yards on 15 carries was the lone bright spot for Coach Tom Wilson‘s squad. Indianola held the advantage in total yardage with a 172-140 margin.

But the Indians saw that 7-0 halftime lead over Dowling disappear on a 65-yard QB keeper by Ryan Boyle with 7:37 to play in the 3rd quarter. Boyle would see a lot of second half action, trying to jumpstart the team. He’d finish with 6 carries worth 106 yards.

The game would remain tied until the first drive of the 4th frame when Chase Dowell took a toss sweep left, cut it against the grain and score on 3rd and goal to cap a 11 play, 79 yard drive. The Maroons would put a defensive bow on the score when Alex Kramer picked up a fumble and scored what he said was his first high school touchdown.

Dowling’s defense would keep the pressure on, forcing the Indians to go backwards on their last drive of the game. The final play of the drive was a 4th and 40 yards to go situation. Sacks by Nick Navin, Sam Herold and Matthew Formanek would allow QB Dan Hartlieb to take a knee for the with seconds remaining to ice away a 21-7 win.

The offense gained 267 yards rushing on 41 carries and were 5-15 passing for 76 yards and a total of 343 yards.

Indianola was 46-137 rushing and 11-24 passing for 153 yards and 290 total.

The victory gave the Maroons a share of another CIML Central title. That adds to their titles in 2000, 2001, 2005, 2006, 2008, 2009, 2010 and now 2011.

They finish the regular season 7-2 and have a bye in week 9. The Indians fall to 0-8.

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