BY ROB WITZEL
---- — WESTVILLE — With everything on the line Friday night — the Coal Bucket, playoff hopes and the pride of beating their biggest rival — the Georgetown-Ridge Farm/Chrisman Buffaloes flat out played their best game of the season.
The Buffaloes had a great defensive showing that didn’t allow points until the final quarter and were led offensively by senior captain Dylan Bina in a 33-13 victory over the Westville Tigers in the Coal Bucket game.
“It’s a great feeling,” Bina said. “This game is so hyped up. It’s something Georgetown and Westville look forward to and you get so much encouragement from the towns, and they brag about you when you play well.”
Bina had an exceptional game, and was truly the team’s workhorse. Thirty of the team’s 49 offensive plays were Bina rushes. He picked up 262 yards on the ground with three touchdowns.
Or as Buffaloes coach Josh Cavanaugh put it — “He went into ‘Beast Mode.’”
Bina was not once stopped behind the line of scrimmage and had no gain only once.
“He just wasn’t going to be tackled,” Cavanaugh said of his running back. “He played out of his mind. And a lot of that credit to how well the offensive line played too, they showed up tonight.”
Bina also gave credit to his blockers up front acknowledging how important they were to his big night.
“Any play coach called, the o-line made it work. They allowed me to break away and get where I needed to go.” Bina said.
With both teams relying on the run, the first half went rapidly. Westville entered the red zone a couple of times but the Buffaloes defense denied them a score.
Meanwhile, the Buffaloes scored twice, once in each of the first two quarters. First came a 42 yard run by Bina and then with just 21 seconds left in the half, quarterback Ethan Sliva connected with Dylan Mills on a 10-yard pass. With both extra points made, the Buffaloes led 14-0 at halftime.
Neither team scored in the third quarter but at the tail end of it Georgetown was close. The Buffaloes extended their lead early in the fourth on a 3 yard touchdown run by Bina. Later in the quarter Bina, would score on a 24 yard run extending the lead to 27-0.
Down by four scores, the Tigers would not quit and rapidly closed the deficit.
The Tigers started to open things up through the air and Kyle Brazas connected with Dalton Hilligoss on a 54-yard touchdown throw.
After a good extra point, Westville successfully got the ball back on an onside kick. Then the Tigers scored again with a 50-yard Brazas pass to freshman LaDavion Severado closing the gap and making it a 27-13 game.
The next onside kick was unable to fool the Buffaloes again and shortly after Troy Rodriguez scored on a 48-yard touchdown run. The run extended the lead 33-13 and that’s how the game would end.
For the Buffaloes, their 5-4 record makes them playoff eligible and they await their postseason fate.
Meanwhile the 2013 season has come to an end for Westville. The Tigers’ season will be remembered as a year of overcoming great adversity.
In the first four weeks, Westville faced very tough opponents and began the year 0-4. For over a month, the team faced playoff elimination and the team never quit.
“To go through the meat grinder we did in the first four games of the season and still be in this position I’m very proud of our guys,” Westville Coach Guy Goodlove said. “We never lost their enthusiasm for the game. We continued to come out with great attitudes and got better as the season progressed; it’s just unfortunate it had to come to an end.”
Vermilion Valley Conference All Times Central Conf. Overall Team W L W L Bismarck-Henning 6 0 9 0 Salt Fork 5 1 8 1 Geo-RF/Chrisman 3 3 5 4 Milford/Cissna Park 3 3 5 4 Westville 3 3 4 5 Oakwood/A-P 1 5 1 8 Hoopeston Area 0 6 0 7 Friday, Oct. 25 games Georgetown-Ridge Farm/Chrisman 33, Westville 13 Salt Fork 39, Oakwood/Armstrong-Potomac 6 Milford/Cissna Park 56, Hoopeston Area 6 Bismarck-Henning 20, Arthur-Lovington 14