After opening the season with four-straight losses, the Indians believed it was time to reset.
To start over.
“We just told ourselves that we are 0-0,” Madison Central senior Ashton Hulberg said. “It didn’t matter if we were 0-4. We just wanted to be 1-0. We weren’t worried about anything else.”
That’s the attitude the Indians took into a match-up with Lafayette last week in Lexington.
And it made a difference.
Central had to rally late, but was still able to pick up a very dramatic 24-18 victory over the Generals.
“They weren’t going to worry about what had happened,” Central coach Mark Scenters said. “They were just going to try to win each week. That’s been the theme. We just wanted to turn the page forward and not look back.”
Now, the Indians are looking to build off that momentum from that potentially season-changing victory.
Central (1-4) returns home this week to face Dixie Heights (1-3).
Kickoff for the Homecoming game is set for 7:30 p.m. in Richmond.
“It’s all part of the growing process,” Scenters said of his team. “It’s a day-by-day thing.”
The Indians had to overcome a lot of adversity to earn the first win of the season.
Central had five turnovers (all fumbles), missed two field goals and had nine penalties.
The Indians forced a late fumble, which led to a 7-yard touchdown catch by Hulberg with 1:07 left in the game.
Central also came into the game short-handed.
Joe Burton, the team’s leading rusher (234 yards, 64 carries) was out with an injury and Adrien Parks, the team’s second-leading rusher, had to play through an ankle problem.
“He had been nursing an ankle injury. He had been iffy on it all week,” Scenters of Burton. “He tried to practice on Wednesday and he just couldn’t go.”
Parks battled through the pain and had 76 yards on 21 carries.
Matt Jones was added to the roster from the junior varsity team and had 30 yards rushing. Burton could be back against Dixie Height, but with the team scheduled for an open date next week, the coaching staff won’t take any chances.
Junior quarterback Canon Scenters had his best performance as a starting quarterback in the win over Lafayette.
He completed 13-of-21 passes for 192 yards, three touchdowns and no interceptions.
“He had a solid night,” Scenters said of his QB. “There were certainly things he could have done better. He’s getting more comfortable.”
Turnover, though, continue to be a problem for Central.
The Indians have given the ball away 17 times this season — 10 fumbles, seven interceptions — and have a -11 turnover margin.
“We have to protect the football,” Scenters said. “Squeeze it, cover it up in traffic and make sure we have it in the right hand. Those are lessons we learned the hard way.”
Dixie Heights has had a hard time scoring points this season.
The Colonels have been shutout three times this season. All of their points came in a 35-12 win over Clark County at home last month.
“They are a tough read,” Scenters said of Dixie Heights. “They look a lot more dangerous to me than a team that has been shutout three times.”
The Colonels were off last week.
They are coming off back-to-back shutout losses to Conner (35-0) and Covington Catholic (45-0).
Dixie Heights has used three quarterbacks so far this season.
Senior Jeremy Adams is a dual threat for the Colonels. He has completed 13-of-33 passes for 144 yards with three interceptions, but is also the team’s leading rusher — 226 yards on 42 rushes with one rushing touchdown.
“That kid looks like a legit D1 player,” Scenters said of the 6-foot-3, 210-pound quarterback. “He’s a big kid who runs very well. We have issues stopping running quarterbacks, so we want to limit him as much as we can.”
Senior Dylan Sears has a season-best 242 yards receiving this season with one touchdown for the Colonels.
The game will mark the first-ever meeting between Madison Central and Dixie Heights.