Southsider Voice correspondent
Southport High School’s freshman football team defeated Columbus North 44-12 Saturday to win the Conference Indiana championship.
Southport head coaches Craig Ray and Chris Stevenson had their team ready to play, and it showed as the Cardinals (9-0) manhandled the Bulldogs on both sides of the ball, just as they had done in most of their games.
The Cards scored on their opening drive as quarterback Ed Schott directed a strong ground attack anchored by running back Jalen Caldwell, who capped the 72-yard drive with a 6-yard touchdown run and a 2-point conversion for a 8-0 lead.
The defense then showed it was just as prepared by forcing the Bulldogs into a three-and-out after linebacker Michael Fidler sacked Trenton Kelley for an 11-yard loss on second down, followed by an incomplete pass.
Southport’s Lucas Willoughby fielded the game’s first punt and returned it to the CN 22-yard line. Two plays later, Caldwell scored on a 5-yard run and added another 2-point conversion for 16-0 lead.
The Cardinals’ Willoughby intercepted a pass on the Bulldogs’ next possession, and Caldwell didn’t waste any time in scoring his third touchdown, this time on a 25-yard run. The 2-point conversion failed, but Southport was in control with a 22-0 lead at the end of the first quarter.
Columbus North launched a minor comeback in the second quarter with a passing attack that led to a 72-yard scoring drive.
Schott and Chad Rothwell added touchdowns in the second half while the defense shut out CN.