NEW MADISON – Tri-Village got a stiff test Saturday morning when the Tri-County North Panthers came to town.
The Panthers, steep in football tradition with a large roster compared to many teams in the Cross County Conference, proved to be a challenge the Patriots needed.
Tri-Village got on the board first when Jonny Wilson tossed a 9-yard touchdown pass to Austin Bruner at 3:22 in the first quarter to go up 6-0.
Tri-County North answered the Patriots with a scoring pass of its own when Bo Hendrickson connected with James Fry on a 16-yarder for the score. Hendrickson also tossed a pass to Alex Kirby for the two-point conversion as the Panthers went up on the Patriots 8-7.
Tri-Village put together a nice drive, but it looked it was about to stall when the Patriots were facing a fourth down and 18 yards to go … but Jonny Wilson found Austin Bruner behind the Panthers in the end zone for a 19-yard pass for the touchdown.
After retaking the lead Tri-Village was looking to add one more score before the end of the half … but a strong defensive effort by the Panthers halted the Patriots on the 8-yard line and the score remained 13-8 at the half.
Alex Kirby got the lead back in the third quarter for Tri-County North on a 43-yard run after breaking a number of Patriot tackles. Drake Coleman hauled in the two-point conversion pass to put the Panthers up 16-13 at 5:55.
TV answered the Panthers when Jared Buckley ran the sweep around the right side of the line for a 4-yard TD and with Diego Garcia’s extra point the Patriots led 20-16 at 2:12 in the third quarter.
Liam Downing put the Panthers back on top for good when he got in the end zone on a 9-yard run and the two-point conversion to make the score 24-20 North.
Tri-Village made one last drive looking to get the lead back, but North got the ball back on downs and scored on more time before the clock expired on a 5-yard run by Drake Coleman to win the game 30-20.
“It was a physical game today they hit us and challenged our kids. It’s good to have one of those type of games,” Tri-Village football coach Jason Schondelmyer said. “Obviously you want to be on the winning side of it. It was a good measuring stick … but we have to get a lot stronger. Some of this is our age, but we have to get in the weight room this year.
“I told our guys if you aren’t sore tomorrow you didn’t lay it all on the line. They got challenged for the whole game, and it’s what this team needed to get better,” Schondelmyer concluded.
TV: Austin Bruner 9-yard rec from Jonny Wilson (kick good) 7-0
TC: James Fry 16-yard rec Bo Hendrickson (conversion good) 7-8
TV: Bruner 18-yard rec from Wilson (conversion no good) 13-8
TC: Alex Kirby 43-yard run (Coleman conversion run) 13-16
TV: Jared Buckley 4-yard run (Garcia kick) 20-16
TC: Liam Downing 9-yard run (Downing conversion run) 20-24
TC: Drake Coleman 5-yard run (conversion no good) 20-30