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Senior receiver powers Braves

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Indian Creek senior Brenden Smith scored three touchdowns, and the Braves’ defense scored off three interceptions holding off visiting Providence in the second half to take a 41-21 victory Friday night.

Smith had an interception, caught two passes, both for touchdowns, and ran for a third score to help the Braves improve to 2-2 on the season.

Until the third quarter, the game was nothing like what the final score showed.

The Braves led 12-0 at halftime, scoring off a couple Providence interceptions. They pushed the lead to 20-0 on sophomore Hunter Pottorff’s 27-yard interception return for a touchdown. And Smith’s third score gave them a 28-0 lead with 5:46 left in the third.

But, the Pioneers outscored Indian Creek 21-13 the rest of the game, returning a kickoff for a touchdown and scoring on two rushing touchdowns from junior Matt Bell, who finished with 28 carries for 183 yards.

Neither team’s offense could get moving in the first quarter. The first five drives of the game ended in punts, three for Indian Creek and two for Providence.

But the Braves’ defense helped spark their offense with interceptions, while the offense did its part with a trick play.

Late in the first quarter, Smith intercepted a Providence pass and caught a 34-yard touchdown reception thrown by junior wide receiver Ethan Whitaker on a trick play.

The Braves did it again late in the second half. Whitaker returned an interception 19 yards to the Providence 15-yard line. A few plays later, and Smith was in the end zone on a five-yard run.

With Indian Creek missing injured junior Dokken Egenolf and senior Justin Cochran at running back, senior Cory Utecht shouldered most of the carries, rushing 18 times for 54 yards.

Indian Creek senior Austin Wethington scored on a three-yard touchdown run in the third quarter, and sophomore Elijah Dunn scored on a 62-yard run late in the fourth.

Indian Creek plays at Class 3A Brown County at 7 p.m. Friday.

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