Eddies defeated by Berrien Springs, 16-14Published 4:06pm Wednesday, October 28, 2009
By JEFF FISHER
The last game of the regular season looked a lot like a season-opener for the Edwardsburg Eddies and the Berrien Springs Shamrocks Friday night.
Playing at Edwardsburg, both teams fumbled for a combined four times, with the Shamrocks losing three of them and the Eddies giving it to the ‘Rocks once, while there was a combined eight penalties called.
When it was over and despite two touchdown runs from Edwardsburg’s Devin Bywaters, Berrien Springs escaped the Lakeland Conference affair with a 16-14 win thanks to a 2-point conversion stop that would have knotted the game up and late fourth-and-5 stop to seal the win.
With the win the Shamrocks share the Lakeland Conference crown with Buchanan, while the Eddies finish their season with a 3-3 conference record and a 4-5 overall mark.
“We kept stepping on ourselves and stepping on ourselves,” Berrien Springs coach Bill Bergan said. “Give credit to (Edwardsburg coach) Kevin’s (Bartz) kids, they kept fighting and made us step up and we did that and I am proud of them.”
After a scoreless first quarter, the Shamrocks dented the scoreboard first in the second quarter on a 27-yard field goal from Nathan Siebenmark. After a punt by the Eddies and with 2:26 remaining in the first half, the legs of Shamrocks quaterback Nolan O’Brien got his team down to the one-yard line and on a third-and-goal play Anthony Johnson plunged in for the touchdown, Berrien led 9-0 going into the break.
The Eddies were held to just 55 yards and two first downs in the first half, while Berrien racked up 200-plus yards and a dozen first downs.
Was there a letdown by the Eddies in the first half after the heartbreaking loss to Buchanan last week?
“They looked like a deer in the headlights to start,” Eddies coach Kevin Bartz said. “I don’t know if it was parent’s night where nothing is like it normally is, they didn’t seem fired up to begin the game and then were fired up when they created their own spark.”
The Eddies still couldn’t get any traction going in the third quarter as Cole Golden fumbled on the Eddies first play and gave the “Rocks excellent field position at the Eddies 20-yard line.
O’Brien would run it in from 11-yards out to put the visitors up 16-0.
On the Eddies next play, Kyle Ramsey snapped the ball over the punter’s head and that gave the Shamrocks the ball at the 15.
But Ramsey would redeem himself when he stripped O”Brien from behind and recovered the ball to set up an eventual 57-yard Devin Bywaters sprint for a touchdown to pull within 16-8.
Bywaters would score again from 27-yards out, but Ramsey’s overthrew his receiver on the 2-point conversion that would have tied the game.
The Eddies have one last chance with five minutes to go and deep in their side of the field.
Faced with a fourth-and-five from the 41-yard line, Bartz went for it, but Berrien stopped them cold at the line and turned the ball over on downs. All it took was two knee drops to run out the clock.
Berrien Springs ended with a 292-256 edge in total offense.
Nolan O’Brien led all rushers with 150 yards on 23 carries. Classmate Anthony Johnson registered 105 yards on 18 totes. Devin Bywaters was the Eddies offensive leader with 145 yards on 18 lugs.
“Ramsey played great all night and Bywaters made some big runs in some big situations,” Bartz said.
Gusty winds hindered the passing game as O’Brien was one-for-nine yards while Kyle Ramsey was 3-for-7 yards. Kyle Dale was on the receiving end of two catches for 43 yards.
Dominic Razzano and Chad Tevlin each recorded eight tackles for the Eddies.