The Washington Demons had to be persistent last night, and persistence paid off, earning them the 28-14 win over Norwalk to advance to round two in the 3A state football playoffs.
Throughout the first quarter and most of the second it was a stalemate, with both teams turning the ball over, and both teams failing to get anywhere near scoring range, until the Demons were inside the 10, and fumbled the ball on an option pitch.
It took almost all of the second quarter until Alex Coker found a hole on the right side of his line, and took it 43 yards for the score and made it 7-0, and that is how it went into halftime.
The Demons started with the ball in the second half, and much like two of their last three games, the first play from scrimmage after receiving their first kickoff of the game, Carl Sivels took the ball 65 yards for a touchdown to make it 14-0.
Washington had some more drives in there, before making the game 21-0 on another Sivels six yard run.
What looked like a game that the Demons were running away with, turned out to be very different, as after the kickoff, Kolby Greenslade returned the kickoff 90 yards for a touchdown to make it 7-0, then after the Demons had to punt the ball, the Warriors went back to a successful ground game to drive down the field and score again off a one yard run by Chase Onken.
With 7:43 left to go in the game, it looked like the game would get more interesting, but on the final drive by Washington, quarterback Daryn Sebelius drove his team down the field to face a third down and nine situation with a minute and change on the clock, but instead of the same run play, Sebelius dropped back to pass and hooked up with Justin Hoffman for a 27 yard first down, which led to a one yard run by Sebelius to make the score 28-14 with 29 seconds left.
The Demons put icing on the cake, when Tanner Knupp intercepted the final pass of the game, that should have been ruled a pre-snap penalty off the false start by Norwalk, but the play stood, and the Demons found themselves traveling to Winterset on Monday.
Sebelius was 9-13 with 127 yards passing and a rushing touchdown, Coker had 25 carries, 121 yards and a touchdown, Sivels had 11 carries, 98 yards and two touchdowns, and Mason Quigley was perfect with the point afters.
Demon head coach Randy Shrader talked after the game about how Sebelius managed the game from out on the field.
“The smoke routes and now routes, those were mostly checks by Daryn to those plays, those were not called plays, Daryn checked into those,” Shrader said. “We’ve given him the latitude over the last couple of weeks to do that, and he has made some great decisions, and every one of those was a check by him, that was not the called play, and he just read it and said ‘Okay lets check to this or check to whatever the play happened to be,’ I don’t think people realize how big of game he had to getting the ball to the people that needed to have it.”
The Demons move on to round two, and will play Winterset in Winterset on Monday.