After week off, Dawgs spring back into action with victory
Seeking their first district title since 2009, the Bulldogs took a giant leap in that direction with a convincing 27-7 victory over Flatonia on the road Friday night.
Thorndale—which has won six straight after dropping its season opener—improves to 6-1 on the season and stands 2-0 in District 13A with two games to play.
The Bulldogs will host rival Thrall Friday and travel to Holland on Nov. 1 to close out the regular season.
A win over Thrall (2- 6, 0-2) would put the Bulldogs in the driver’s seat.
Coming after an off week, the Bulldogs were well rested and it showed.
Thorndale’s defense was dominant and was able to convert five turnovers into points and pin up Flatonia to just 220 yards of offense, including 88 yards on the ground on 48 carries (1.8 yards per carry).
“Our defense played great,” said Thorndale Coach Brent Brevard. “We struggled a little offensively the first half, but our defense kept us in the game by coming up with turnovers and controlling the line of scrimmage.”
Flatonia didn’t score its only points until there was under five minutes remaining to be played.
Despite the defensive dominance, the Bulldogs led just 8-0 at intermission when Colton Austin hauled in a 37-yard pass from Riley Schaefer with 54 second left in the first quarter.
It would be almost 21 minutes later before Thorndale would cross the goal line again, when Darius Brooks would burst through from the three-yard line to make it 15-0 with 8:59 left in the third quarter.
Schaefer accumulated 271 yards of total offense, including a teamhigh 65 yards on the ground.
The senior was 12-for-19 for 206 yards and two touchdowns through the air.
Flatonia (6-2, 2-1) had reeled off six straight after losing its season opener and is angling for its first post-season appearance since 2007.
Friday’s matchup with Thrall will mark the 83rd time the two schools have battled in their annual battle for supremacy of Highway 79.
Thorndale leads the series 51-28-3 and has won six straight and 31 of the last 35 against Thrall.
From 1989 through 2004, the Dawgs reeled off 12 straight wins in the series.
The Tigers are coming off a 45-0 thrashing at the hands of Weimar and they stand 2-5 on the
BULLDOG SEASON LEADERS
Rushing—Brooks 86-583 15 TD, Schaefer 50-229 TD, Barker 20-170 2TD, McCoy 27-146 3TD, Austin 27-122 TD, Guzman 12-70, Woefel 3-18, Towery 2-4, Miller 18-55.
Passing— Schaefer 89-155- 3, 1,291 yards, 15 TD, Miller 3- 6-1, 71 yards, TD, Bankston 1-1- 0, 15 yards, TD.
Receiving— Austin 25-416 7TD, Guzman 16-297 3TD, Bankston 14-186 2TD, Miller 12-168 TD, Hafley 13-165 2TD, Gomez 3-26, Barker 4-28, Woefel 2-25, Brooks 1-21, Schaefer 1-15 TD, McCoy 2-30. season and 0-1 in district play.
“Thrall of course is always a big game for Thorndale,” Brevard said. “ They will play hard and be ready for us. “
Coach Jeff Doege provides some stability for the Tigers in his third year and provided a 6-6 playoff team in 2011. The Tigers were 4-6 last season.
From 2007 to 2011, Thrall employed four different coaches.
The Tigers feature the worst defense in the league, allowing 34 points a game.
On offense, they average just 12 points a game and have been outscored 75-10 in two district games.