As Sidney football coach Adam Doenges prepared his squad to take on three-time defending state champ LaSalle in the second round of the Division II, Region 8 playoffs Friday night at Miamisburg High School, he noticed a lot of things.
Turns out, sometimes the film can be slightly skewed.
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“They look fast on film, but they are football fast,” Doenges said. “Across the board, they are all fast.”
LaSalle didn’t need much time to pull away from Sidney for a 41-6 win to stretch its postseason win streak to 16.
While the Lancers are making a run for their fourth, Doenges was talking about the run his senior class has made.
Sidney’s seniors were 12-18 heading before putting together a 10-2 final season.
“When I took over the program, they were coming off an 0-10 season and then we went 0-10 my first year,” Doenges said. “So, going into their seventh grade year, the high school was 0-20 and there were a lot of negative things happening that a lot of people decided to leave.
“But these young men decided to stay and bought into what we were doing. They could have left like so many did, but they bought in for the long haul.”
La Salle made the long haul look longer in the first half.
Sidney managed just three first downs and 65 yards in total offense while La Salle was taking a 34-0 lead with 22 first downs and 365 yards in offense.
Each team had a turnover, Sidney’s coming at the LaSalle 20 trailing just 13-0. LaSalle’s came on its second possession near midfield.
“We needed to be clean,” Doenges said. “And we needed to be clean the whole game. We had a lot of guys going both ways and they two-platooned everyone and I think that started getting to our guys.”
After La Salle pushed the lead to 41-0, Sidney avoided the shutout thanks to a 20-yard run by Isaiah Bowser and a 40-yard connection from Andre Gordon to Ratez Roberts. After Bowser plowed his way to the 1 for a first down on a fourth-down play, Gordon hit a wide open Kelton Stockton in the corner of the end zone with 6:28 remaining in the game.
Sidney finished with seven first downs and 153 yards in total offense.
Bowser finished his final game in a Sidney uniform with 78 yards on 17 carries and also had a catch for 15 yards, one kick return for 54 yards and eight tackles.
Gordon, a junior, hit completed 7 of 14 passes for 90 yards.
While he hates to see Bowser and his classmates leave, Doenges is excited about the future.
“This senior class was very humble and close and didn’t care who got the credit,” Deonges said. “This was great for our young guys because they realize what it takes to get to this point and now they know what they got to do to get past it.”