November 24, 2012

Indianapolis Cathedral captures third straight title in Class 4A
The Indianapolis Cathedral Fighting Irish revved their engines for 28 unanswered points to end the first half and operated at full speed the rest of the way in a 56-29 shootout victory over Mishawaka in the Class 4A championship game.

The Irish victory elevated coach Rick Streiff into an elite category as one of four coaches in state history with at least eight state titles. Streiff won his eighth to tie Dick Dullaghan of Carmel and Ben Davis. Sheridan’s Bud Wright and Fort Wayne Bishop Luers’ Matt Lindsay are at nine.

The Irish, ranked third in the state coaches poll, played a powerhouse schedule, entered the postseason with a 4-5 record and became the first five-loss team to win the Class 4A championship. Their six-win playoff push gives them an 18-game winning streak in the state tournament. The state title was Cathedral’s third in a row and 10th overall.

There were standouts aplenty for the Irish, but perhaps none produced more stunning moments than wide receiver Terry McLaurin. The Cathedral junior scored on the opening play from scrimmage, catching a 79-yard pass from Connor Rice that eclipsed the Class 4A record for longest TD completion. McLaurin also had a 66-yard punt return for another 4A mark and scored on a 41-yard run.

Rice completed 11-of-13 passes for 242 yards and two touchdowns. Wyatt Wood caught four passes for 105 yards and a TD. McLaurin had three catches for 100 yards and the early score.

Cathedral’s Gino Gillum ran for 129 yards and four touchdowns, tying a Class 4A mark for rushing scores.  Gillum’s six-yard burst for the game’s final score with 1:45 left catapulted the Irish to a new points mark in Class 4A. The 85 combined points for Cathedral and Mishawaka ranked as another 4A record.

Unranked Mishawaka was playing in its first state championship game since finishing as the Class 3A runner-up in 1974. Coach Bart Curtis’ Cavemen finished 11-4.

Quarterback Sam Schrader led the Cavemen with 190 rushing yards and a pair of touchdowns. Schrader also passed for 74 yards and a score on 4-of-10. Matt Carver led Mishawaka with 61 receiving yards.

Class 4A State Championship Game Records
Longest Punt Return: 66 yards by Terry McLaurin, Indianapolis Cathedral vs. Mishawaka, 2012.
Longest TD Pass: 79 yards by Connor Rice to Terry McLaurin, Indianapolis Cathedral vs. Mishawaka, 2012.
Most PAT kicks: 8 by Mitch Gerbers, Indianapolis Cathedral vs. Mishawaka, 2012.
(Tied) Most Rushing TDs: 4 by Gino Gillum, Indianapolis Cathedral vs. Mishawaka, 2012.
(Tied) Most Points: 24 by Gino Gillum, Indianapolis Cathedral vs. Mishawaka, 2012.
Most Combined Points: 85 by Indianapolis Cathedral and Mishawaka, 2012.
Most Points: 56 by Indianapolis Cathedral vs. Mishawaka, 2012.
Most Points in a Half: 35 by Indianapolis Cathedral (1st Half) vs. Mishawaka, 2012.
Most PAT kicks: 8 by Indianapolis Cathedral vs. Mishawaka, 2012.
Most TD: 8 by Indianapolis Cathedral vs. Mishawaka, 2012.
Most Rushing TD: 6 by Indianapolis Cathedral vs. Mishawaka, 2012.
Total Offense: 514 by Indianapolis Cathedral vs. Mishawaka, 2012.
Most Combined Total Offense: 886 by Indianapolis Cathedral and Mishawaka (372), 2012.
Most Punt Return Yards: 112 by Indianapolis Cathedral vs. Mishawaka, 2012.

Mishawaka’s Sam Schrader named Eskew Mental Attitude Award Winner
Sam Schrader of Mishawaka High School was selected by members of the IHSAA Executive Committee as this year’s winner of the Phil N. Eskew Mental Attitude Award in Class 4A Football.

The award, named in honor of the IHSAA’s third commissioner from 1962-76, is presented annually to a senior in each classification who best demonstrates excellence in mental attitude, scholarship, leadership and athletic ability.

Schrader owns a 4.069 GPA, is a member of the National Honor Society and has served on the Mishawaka Student Council and Mayor’s Youth Council in his hometown. He is currently undecided on his college choice and area of study.

The senior quarterback is a three-year letterman in football and served as team captain each of the last two seasons. He was named All-Northern Indiana Conference this season and was voted the league’s MVP.

In addition to football, he’s a three year starter in baseball and played two years of varsity basketball for the Cavemen.

Sam is the son of Joseph and Linda Schrader of Mishawaka. He is the second Caveman to win the award joining Scot Shaw in the 1974 3A final game.

Indiana Farm Bureau Insurance, the IHSAA’s corporate partner, presented a scholarship check for $1,000.00 to Mishawaka High School in the name of Schrader.  Since 1989, more than $745,000 in college scholarships have been presented by Indiana Farm Bureau Insurance to deserving high school students in Indiana.

Indianapolis Cathedral Coach Rick Streiff
(On answering all of Mishawaka’s challenges) “Well, thank goodness we did. Our offense played great and their offense is a great, great offense and we definitely had our challenges.  We made some tweaks during the second quarter when they made a run at us and from then on we did pretty well.  Our defense made a couple of stops when we needed them and we had some big plays that gave us some breathing room … but it never felt easy.  Mishawaka has a very, very good team.”

(On Gino Gillum’s 4 TDs, matching last year’s performance) – “He’s a great kid, and our coaches put in a great game plan.  He played well, our kids passed well, caught well, ran well … and our defense was able to slow them down just enough that we were able to win. 

(On Terry McLaurin) – His speed is something that sets us apart as a team.  He’s a real difference maker.”

(On Mishawaka’s Sam Schrader) – “I heard Coach Curtis earlier in the week say that he was the best player nobody knows about.  Well, they know about him now.  What a phenomenal player.  He was very deserving of the attitude award and I bet colleges will start looking at him.”

(On record-breaking points in the game) “We needed every one of them tonight.”

(On the seniors) “Yeah, the kids (getting emotional) … the kids have battled through some games and come back to this point.  Very special.  Getting here once is hard, twice is unusual, but three times is just very special.”

(On possible move to 5A) “You show us where to play and we’ll be there.”

Mishawaka Coach Bart Curtis
“We played great at times and not so well at times – against a great team like Cathedral you’ve got to play well all the time to win and we didn’t do that.”

“This group is a special group. They have done some things that haven’t been done at Mishawaka for a long time. I’m proud of the team’s effort. It hurts right now but I think when we look back over the years, we’ll say we had a heckuva run.”

(On Cathedral’s offense) “Their offense is fast and big and they execute well. They fumbled a couple of times early and that helped us stay in the ball game. You’ve got to tackle and cover against a team like that and we didn’t do either very well. They did everything necessary to secure the win. They just beat us.”

“When it was 14-14, they fumbled but we were punting after three plays. I thought when they ran off three straight scores and almost four scores to end the first half, we just couldn’t recover from it.”

“I thought we had to score just about every time we had the football to win. We didn’t do that. We scored a lot, but not enough.”