Friday night was a prime example that you should never pay attention to a regular season when it comes to the IHSAA Football State Tournament. Yorktown moves on after defeating Peru in round one 35-28 to advance to play #6 in 3A Ft Wayne Bishop Luers (whom they lost to in regionals last year). The Tigers were 3-6 on the year while Peru came in 8-1. Yorktown played a prodominately 4A and 5A schedule all year. While the success wasn’t there, Coach Mike Wilhelm attributed it to playing bigger schools. For one night he was correct. For the 6th straight year, Yorktown has won at least one playoff game. To put that in perspective perennial 6A powers Center Grove, Carmel, Ben Davis, and Warren Central have lost in the opening round at least once in the last six years. Yorktown has not.
Two things stood out on Friday night. 1) Brogan Miller and Brandt Applegate were fantastic and 2) the defense is much better than what we thought. Let’s start with Brogan and Brandt. These two at times have been incredible. Not once this year were they able to display their ability for a whole game. They did so in the most important game of the year so far. Brandt had nearly 200 yards receiving while Brogan Miller had his best game of the year. Applegate has been the first read for Miller nearly all year in passing downs. He is better than just about every corner he faces. Folks, he’s just a sophomore. Oh and by the way, he sealed the game with his interception in the 4th quarter. However on offense, is where he shines. These two are going to be incredible to watch the rest of this year and into next year.
The second part was the defense. Sure, having ILB Peyton Stites back is a huge help but on Friday, they just looked more sound than they had all year long. The linebackers looked confident in their reads, the line of scrimmage was controlled, and they played with energy. The latter of those points was the biggest key and Coach Wilhelm mentioned it. Emotion is key especially on defense. You have to play with a fire and energy. For seemingly the first time all year, Yorktown did so. They had come a long way.
This Friday we have Muncie Central vs. Kokomo in their opening sectional matchup (had last week off). Kokomo is a perfect 9-0 and are one of the best teams in the state. Join us at 6:30 on Friday on 102.9 FM 1340 AM and WXFN.com!