On September 23, the varsity football team had the opportunity to play at Lucas Oil Stadium against Tri-West High School. Although Lebanon fans were met with a losing score of 56-48, the game itself was full of excitement and exhilaration.
As fans and players alike poured into the stadium, the stage was set for an excellent game between the two schools. Throughout the years of Lebanon football, there has always been a rivalry between the two football schools that brings out the best competition from
the student-athletes participating. Prior to the game, Lebanon senior Zachery Huse and Tri-West senior Casey Coll received awards for the 2016 All-Academic Team.
Kickoff ensued, and the rampage of the high-scoring game was about to begin. It was Lebanon who struck first with a 31-yard touchdown pass to junior Ryan Poole. Tri-West swung back with a six-yard touchdown pass to even the score, 7-7. On the following drive, senior quarterback, Evan Stambaugh, connected with Poole again on a 47-yard touchdown pass to take the lead at 14-7. Stambaugh would go on to connect with senior Zack Dafoe for a 5-yard touchdown pass, making the score 21-7. Tri-West drove down field to punch in a score from two yards out for another 6 points, followed by an extra point to come within seven points of Lebanon, 21-14. Stambaugh completed another pass to Dafoe again, this time from 24-yards out to make it 28-14. Tri-West scored from two yards out making the score 28-21 before the end of the half.
Immediately after halftime, Tri-West would drive down field to find the end zone on an 11-yard pass, tying the game at 28-28. Tri-West goes on to connect on a 53-yard touchdown pass to take its first lead, 35-28 over Lebanon. After a Tri-West interception, Tri-West scored again on a 30-yard pass to give them a two-touchdown lead, 42-28. Immediately after the score, Lebanon would drive down field and score on a pass from Stambaugh to senior Jhalil Rollins for 36 yards, making the score 42-35. With the ball in hand, Tri-West finds the end zone again on a three-yard run to regain their two-touchdown lead by the end of the third quarter.
The Tigers had not yet given up yet though as Stambaugh ran the ball in for a five-yard touchdown run, although the extra point was no good, the score was set 49-41 with 8:36 left in the game. Like a dagger to the wound, Tri-West would score on the very first play of the drive, as they connected on an 80-yard pass to increase their lead to 15 points, 56-41 with only 8:22 left in the game. With only 59 seconds remaining, Stambaugh ran in another touchdown, making the score a close 56-48. Lebanon would go for the onside kick, but a penalty resulted in the Tri-West recovery and they were able to run out the remaining time on the clock and ensured the victory.
The game itself was thrilling and the support of the Lebanon community was magnificent for the players and coaches alike. The atmosphere of the game was exhilarating and the players definitely have an experience to hold for their lifetime. The Tiger football schedule continues with Crawfordsville, Southmont, and concludes with Western Boone at home before sectional play.
All photos courtesy of Greg Robertson