The Tippecanoe Red Devils won the Central Buckeye Conference Kenton Trail Division Championship after a shutout win at the Kenton Ridge Cougars. A 40-0 romp gave the Red Devils a 9-1 record and a home playoff game.
"I love this team" said head coach Joel Derge. "After our loss early in the season I told the team we can take care of business and still win this championship and we did and I'm so proud of how we played."
Tippecanoe started on offense and took a 12 play 65 yard drive in for a score. Tailback Jakob Prall took a fourth and one pitch at the goal line for a touchdown. Kicker Dylan Shomper booted the extra point and the Red Devils led 7-0 with 7:01 remaining in the first quarter.
The Tipp defense was ferocious all night and at the end of the first, defenseman Noah Carlson sacked the Cougars quarterback forcing a punt. The Red Devils next scoring drive went four plays and 55 yards. Quarterback Brandon Gotthardt threw a rainbow to wide open receiver Bobby Hopkins and it was 14-0 with 9:14 left in the half.
The Cougars next drive ended with an interception by Devils Cade Rogers. Tippecanoe capitalized on a seven play drive ending with another touchdown as running back Cole Barhorst rumbled his way into the end zone at the three yard line. Tipp led 21-0 with 5:35 left in the half. The Tippecanoe defense forced a turnover on downs behind stops by tacklers Caleb Heilman, Chris Garber, and Jake Walland.
The Red Devils offense put more points on the board to close the half. Gotthardt threw a 13 yard strike to Eric Seeman. The conversion failed but the Red Devils took a 27-0 lead into the locker room.
The Red Devils defense was relentless and forced two Cougars possessions into turnover on downs. Prall hit a big hole opened by offensive lineman Jack Peura and Zach Mace 53 yards into the end zone for a touchdown. The extra point was missed but the Red Devils secured a 33-0 lead with 4:01 remaining in the third quarter. The OHSAA running clock was now in effect.
Backup quarterback Aaron Hughes sealed the game with a touchdown throw to Bobby Hopkins, capping off a 40-0 win.
As the final seconds ticked off the Red Devils doused head coach Joel Derge with the Gatorade bucket in celebration as the hard work and near perfect season was complete. "We are excited and looking forward to the playoffs" said coach Derge. "Soon we will find out who we play and will start preparing for a big game.”