October 08, 2008 A mild evening quickly turned into a chilly Friday night in Ramsey. Visiting Eastern's chances disappeared with the warmth of the sun following a competitive first half. After leading by just five at the break, North Harrison broke the game open in the third quarter on its way to a 45-18 Mid-Southern Conference victory on homecoming night.
In between drives, North Harrison running back Matt Bruderle (No. 5) talks with the offensive line. (Photo by Ross Schulz)
"I was a little disappointed with the way we started, and they were a little disappointed with the way we started," North Harrison coach Jason Mullis said. "We wanted to come out in the second half and play our game, smash-mouth football. I was kind of worried early, but we came out and played better in the second half."
Sophomore kicker Zack Stephenson put the Cougars on the board first with a 31-yard field goal with 6:06 remaining in the first half.
The Cougars next scoring possession came in the second quarter when Matt Bruderle ran for a score untouched from 14 yards. The drive stayed alive after quarterback Matt Johnson found receiver Tony Powell for a 30-yard gain on third-and-eight. Johnson completed all but one of his five pass attempts for 114 yards.
Eastern quickly answered with a 65-yard touchdown run, but the Cougars denied the 2-point conversion as linebacker Jacob Snook corralled quarterback Michael Givans on the attempt.
Bruderle scored his second of four touchdowns with just 18 seconds left in the first half to push the Cougar lead to 17-6. But lightning struck again for Eastern as sophomore Ryan Tandy took a screen pass from Givans and somehow made his way to the end zone as time expired.
North Harrison sent the Musketeers packing early in the third quarter with another Bruderle scored followed by an interception return for a touchdown by Snook. Bruderle and Snook would each tack on another touchdown. Snook, usually an offensive lineman, scored from the running back position from six yards.
The loss kept Eastern winless in seven tries, while North Harrison moved to 3-3 and more importantly, 3-1 in the conference standings. The Cougars will face defending conference champion Charlestown (5-2, 4-1) Friday night.