BATESVILLE – If Batesville’s main focus on defense was to stop Greensburg’s junior quarterback Toby Brogan in the Sectional 31 semifinal Nov. 1, that mission was anything but accomplished.

Brogan rushed for 173 of the Pirates’ 329 total yards on the ground, scored all five Greensburg touchdowns, and passed for another 91 yards, helping lead his team into the championship game Friday, Nov. 8, vs. Lawrenceburg, which decimated Charlestown 49-18 in the other semifinal.

Late in the first half, Bulldog junior Austin Pohlman completed the biggest play of the night for the home team. The tailback raced 60 yards to Greensburg’s 1-yard line and scored on the next snap to tie the game at 12.

The Pirate defense then played inspired ball after halftime to produce a 2nd-half shutout and a final score of 36-12.

The hosts had a chance to add more points before intermission, aided largely by Greensburg’s 30 yards of penalties. A pass interference call on third down kept the Bulldog drive alive, leading to a pair of 1st-down completions by sophomore QB Travis Lecher. With time ticking to zero, senior tight end Charlie Dice hauled in a Lecher pass at the Pirates’ 29.

Roughing the passer was called at the tail end of the play, extending the half with an untimed down. With the ball at the 14, BHS head coach Evan Ulery sent his field goal unit in; sophomore Braiden Foster’s 31-yard attempt was shy of the goal post.

After a BHS punt to start the second half, the visitors ran nine consecutive run plays – using a mix of Brogan, junior Jalen Woods and sophomore Oakley Best – to go ahead for good with 6:49 left in the third quarter. Brogan danced in from the 8-yard line and Ben Bausback’s extra point was good for a 19-12 lead.

After another Bulldog three-and-out, Greensburg (7-4) started from midfield. Woods broke off a 35-yard run (he would go for 119 in the contest) but three Brogan runs later near the goal line went nowhere. Bausback was brought on by coach Scott Moore, connecting from 22 yards and a 2-score lead at 22-12.

The Dogs were advancing on the ensuing drive, with a Lecher pass to junior Trey Peters overcoming a holding penalty. On the first play of the fourth quarter, however, the guests recovered a Pohlman fumble at their own 39.

Woods gained 18 yards on the following play and Brogan made it four first downs on the drive with an 18-yard scamper down to the one. Brogan plunged in at the 7:51 mark and Bausback’s kick made it 29-12.

Now facing a three-score deficit and dwindling time, Batesville had little room for error. Lecher paced off a 21-yard gain into Pirate territory, but after a delay of game call, the Bulldogs tried three unsuccessful pass plays before a turnover on downs.

Greensburg started at its own 40. Woods and Best combined to cover 36 yards in eight plays, followed by Brogan’s 15-yard scramble inside the 10. With 1st-and-goal from the 9, Brogan went in on the next play for TD number five. After Bausback’s kick was true, the Pirates had a 24-point lead with just 2:41 to play.

The Bulldogs had two more official drives, the first a three-and-out and the last consisting of a 25-yard Lecher run before the final horn.

BHS deferred to begin the game, electing to kick off. Brogan completed his first of two passes on the evening; a swing pass to Corbin Mathews went for 28 yards. The Dogs’ defense bucked up, though, junior Jeremiah Lemmel getting through for a sack on 3rd down. The resulting punt landed in the end zone for a touchback.

Batesville’s most sustained drive followed. After a trick play on first down fell incomplete, eight of the Bulldogs’ next 10 plays went for positive yardage. Lecher completed four passes on the drive, one going to Dice for 28 yards and two wide receiver screens sent to junior Kurt Siefert for first downs. On a 2nd-and-14 from just inside the Pirates’ 15, Lecher took off around the left end and sneaked inside the pylon for the game’s first score.

On the next possession, as it looked like BHS’ defense would get off the field again on 3rd down, Brogan instead rolled to his right and found Adam Koester for a 63-yard catch-and-run. Brogan found the goal line a play later for the 6-6 tie.

Near the end of period one, senior Justin Heiser stepped in front of a Brogan pass, giving the Dogs the ball at Greensburg’s 26. The offense could only net one yard in turning it over on downs.

The Pirates threatened again when they took over, but Bausback missed a 32-yard attempt. After a quick three-and-out and tipped punt, the Bucs were in fat city at the Dogs’ 23. Brogan toted the rock on two of the three plays, the last a 14-yard TD.

Pohlman rushed for 103 yards and Lecher passed for 101. The Pirates had 20 first downs to BHS’ 13.

Batesville’s season came to an end at 4-7. Closing the curtains on their high school careers were Conner Batchelor, Sam Bowman, Jake Cruse, Jacob Deutsch, Dice, Axel Garcia, Heiser, Brayden Linkel, JT Linkel, Ethan Meyer and Nick Nobbe.

Will Fehlinger can be contacted at sports@batesvilleheraldtribune.com or 812-934-4343, ext. 220112