|Troy Cron had a monster night, running for two scores and passing for two more - not to mention, hauling in an interception.
|Bobby Alexander was nearly unblockable from his nose guard position.
NOVEMBER 3, 2012 - COVINGTON
The Covington Buccaneers played a style of football Saturday night in a Regional Quarterfinal win over Dixie that coach Dave Miller believes is the key to a long playoff run.
And that style is grind out yardage by controlling the line of scrimmage and keep the opposing team's offense on the sideline with time consuming drives.
"The entire philosophy offensively is to take care of your defense," said Miller. "Eat up clock, keep them (the opponent) on the sideline and take care of the football. It's a philosophy that has proven to be successful at all levels if executed properly."
If one drive symbolizes that philosophy it was after Dixie's game-breaking running back Ryan Jordan broke loose for a 67-yard touchdown run midway through the first quarter.
Up to that point the Buccs had dominated, scoring on a pair of touchdown runs by A.J. Ouellette.
But the run by Jordan gave Dixie, who was making its first ever playoff appearance, new life
"He's scary fast," praised Miller of Jordan.
Needing to regain the momentum, Covington used up 6:00 on an 11-play, 65-yard drive that concluded 1:00 into the second quarter on a six-yard run by Ouellette for a 21-6 Buccaneer lead.
"That was a huge drive," Miller smiled. "That was team football at its best. And it couldn't have come at a better time."
It also sparked the Covington defense, which forced a three-and-out on Dixie's next possession, putting the Buccaneer offense in excellent field position near midfield.
And the Buccs used the big play this time to strike gold as Troy Cron connected with Austin Angle from 32 yards out on a halfback pass to push the lead to 28-6.
"We don't throw much, sometimes not at all," Miller explained. "But when we do, we try to make it count."
Dixie does throw the ball a lot and it didn't take long for the Greyhounds to strike back once again as Luke Bowling found Jordan over the middle for a 24-yard scoring strike to cut the deficit to 28-12.
"Those two kids (Bowling and Jordan) had us worried all week," said Miller. "Every game we saw them they made big plays. They made good teams look slow. We needed this test as a defense, but it does worry you. Their quarterback is the real deal."
Dixie forced Covington to punt on the ensuing possession to get the ball back with under 2:00 to go in the half.
But a huge interception off a tipped pass by Trent Tobias gave Covington the ball back at midfield.
Three plays later, Covington used a little trickery as Troy Cron took the reverse and threw a 28-yard strike to a wide open Kyler Deeter in the end zone for a 35-12 Buccaneer lead at the half.
And Dixie never could recover as Covington took the opening possession of the second half and scored on a 41-yard run by Cron.
A 32-yard scoring jaunt by Ouellette and a 14-yard run by Cron followed as the Buccs took a commanding 55-12 lead at the end of three quarters of play.
From there the junior varsity kids took over as Covington cruised to a 55-18 win.
"This was a big win against a very good football team," Miller said. "Our maturity showed tonight. They got some big plays on us, but the kids never got rattled. That's a sign of a good football team."
Just how good of a football team Covington can be is still something the Buccaneer faithful is anxious to find out.
The next test is next Saturday against Cincinnati Summit Country Day, who advanced with a win over Triad.