South vs Terre Haute North preview

John Kelly, Editor

Bloomington South Panthers (1-1) at Terre Haute North Patriots (2-0)

When: Friday, Sep. 6, 7:30 p.m.

Where: Gene Shike Field, Terre Haute, IN

Last Meeting: 52-14 (W) (2018)

After a confusing week two in which South struggled mightily to muster any offense, the Panthers will make the trip up State Road 46 for their first road game against Terre Haute North. These two teams will meet in week three again this year in a series in which Bloomington South has won its last seven games. 

Offense: Rather than taking a step forward against Martinsville, the Panther offense took a big step back. Junior quarterback Mason David tossed three interceptions, totaling four interceptions in his first two games as a varsity starter. However, the main takeaway from the Martinsville game is the status of senior running back Maveric Thiery, who was sidelined for the second half of last week’s game with a shoulder injury. It is still questionable as to whether Thiery will play on Friday, so if he is out, expect senior Aaron Chestnut to take the bulk of the carries with senior Re’Chaun Bledsoe to come in as a compliment. It’s not a bad week to be flustered, as Terre Haute North has historically had a pretty bad defense. The Patriot defense doesn’t return much experience, but they haven’t allowed a point all year and do bring back a good player in junior linebacker Connor Lutz, who tallied 112 tackles in his sophomore campaign.

Defense: Last week’s defense was not as bad as the scoreboard would indicate. Overall, the unit was stout and made big stops on fourth down, preventing Martinsville from scoring in the second half. Most of the damage last week was done on a couple of big pass plays when Artesian receivers were able to find their way behind the South secondary. The good news for South is that Terre Haute doesn’t have the same caliber of receivers as Martinsville, but they do have respectable playmakers on the outside. Junior wide receivers Eli Moody, Mahki Johnson, and Deven Stillwell are all talented players who will make a play if given the opportunity. The primary focus of this defense will be stopping the pass, as junior quarterback Matt Gauer has shown tremendous arm strength in his first two starts at the varsity level. Terre Haute North passes on 70 percent of its plays, so good secondary play is crucial for a South victory. 

Overview: This is a South team coming off of a very disappointing week looking to redeem themselves. It is unclear as to whether Thiery will play or not, but the offense should be able to take advantage of a team who has played weaker small schools the last two weeks. Prediction: BHSS- 17 THN- 6

Keys to the game: 

  1. Don’t get beat deep in the passing game
  2. Avoid turnovers on offense
  3. Cut penalties down from last week