By: Aaron Pyle
Following their 80-50 victory over Centre in the second round, the Indians found themselves in the quarterfinals of the playoffs for the third straight year.
Friday evening, St. Paul (9-1) faced the always dangerous Hanover Wildcats (10-0) who hadn’t lost in 36 consecutive games. The Wildcats were also D-II 8-man champions in the previous year as they were moved to D-I this year.
Conditions played a key factor in Friday’s game as snow covered the field to which the yard lines were almost unrecognizable.
Hanover scored on the first drive of the game as they added on the two points as well making the score 8-0.
In the Indians following drive, the Indians fumbled the ball as Hanover recovered giving their offensive possession in St. Paul territory. This recovery would then lead to Hanover throwing a pass for a touchdown bringing the score to 16-0 midway through the first quarter.
Junior Adam Albertini and the Indians would respond driving all the way down the field, but the Wildcat defense was too much as St. Paul would turn the ball over.
The Wildcats answered on the turnover marching the ball downfield with their explosive run-option offense pushing the lead to 22-0.
Following the touchdown, Hanover would recover the kickoff after the ball was misjudged on a fair catch by St. Paul. Hanover scored one play after the recover pushing their lead to 30-0 at the end of the first.
St. Paul could not get anything going offensively as Hanover’s big, stifling defense continued to contain the Indians.
Hanover would go on to beat St. Paul 46-0 as the mercy rule played into effect at halftime. The Indians finish their season co-champions in the Three Rivers League 8-Man with a record of 9-2.