Wheeler 21, Bishop Noll 19 | The Bearcats don't allow an offensive touchdown

Wheeler defense stuffs Noll in GSSC win

2013-10-11T22:38:00Z 2013-10-12T01:01:08Z Wheeler defense stuffs Noll in GSSC winMatt Douthett matthew.douthett@nwi.com, (219) 933-4194 nwitimes.com

HAMMOND | The first six minutes of Friday's Greater South Shore Conference showdown between Wheeler and Bishop Noll couldn't have gone much worse for the Bearcats.

After giving up a 35-yard field goal to Bishop Noll's Aaron Garza, the senior kicker scooped up a fumble on the ensuing kickoff and returned it for a 24-yard touchdown.

Facing an early 10-0 deficit, the Bearcats regrouped and dug their cleats in on defense, holding on for a tough, 21-19 comeback win over the Warriors on their Homecoming night.

“We asked them all week to step up, and we asked each individual guy to take a step,” Wheeler coach Tony Klimczak said. “We had a few guys really take over ownership of our defense and get it done.”

One of those guys was Sam Bolla, who picked off Noll's Nick Thrasher in the waning seconds of the game as Noll was trying to get in position for a last-second win.

“Defense is the heart of the team,” Bolla said. “If your defense steps up, they're not going to score and it gives you more opportunities (offensively).”

Kyle Burch shined on both sides of the ball for Wheeler (4-4, 4-2 GSSC). Offensively, Burch hauled in passes of 54 and 26 yards from quarterback Riley Smith. Defensively, Burch had Wheeler's other interception and was a big part of a unit that didn't allow any offensive touchdowns in the game.

“Kyle has been an amazing player all year,” Klimczak said. “He's come up big when we've asked him to. Big players make big plays in games like this. I'm extremely proud of him.”

Noll scored its other touchdown on a 93-yard kickoff return from Jahari Davis and got a second field goal from Garza,a 29-yarder in the second quarter.

However, Wheeler's defense bottled up the Warriors (4-4, 4-2 GSSC) far too many times on third down.

“We didn't finish enough drives,” Noll coach Mike Juscik said. “We moved the ball OK at times, and then we would stall out. We left ourselves with some long field goal attempts.

“It was a good football game. We may see them again. I think if we see them again, it will again be a good football game.”

Copyright 2014 nwitimes.com. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Follow The Times

Fan Poll

Loading…

Which school has the area's best boys tennis team?

View Results

Follow your school

Duneland Conference

Chesterton Trojans
News
Crown Point Bulldogs
News
Lake Central Indians
News
LaPorte Slicers
News
Merrillville Pirates
News
Michigan City Wolves
News
Portage Indians
News
Valparaiso Vikings
News

Greater South Shore Conference

Bishop Noll Warriors
News
Calumet Warriors
News
Lake Station Eagles
News
Michigan City Marquette Blazers
News
North Newton Spartans
News
River Forest Ingots
News
Wheeler Bearcats
News
Whiting Oilers
News

Great Lakes Athletic Conference

Clark Pioneers
News
Gavit Gladiators
News
Hammond Wildcats
News
Morton Governors
News

Hoosier Conference

Rensselaer Bombers
News

Northwest Crossroads Conference

Andrean 59ers
News
Griffith Panthers
News
Highland Trojans
News
Hobart Brickies
News
Kankakee Valley Kougars
News
Lowell Red Devils
News
Munster Mustangs
News

Northwestern Conference

Lew Wallace Hornets
News
Roosevelt Panthers
News
West Side Cougars
News

Porter County Conference

Boone Grove Wolves
News
Hanover Central Wildcats
News
Hebron Hawks
News
Kouts Mustangs/Fillies
News
LaCrosse Tigers
News
Morgan Twp. Cherokees
News
South Central Satellites
News
Washington Twp. Senators
News
Westville Blackhawks
News

Independents

Bowman Academy Eagles
News
Calumet Christian
News
Campagna Academy
News
Covenant Christian Knights
News
E.C. Central Cardinals
News
Hammond Baptist Swordsman
News
Luther East Eagles
News

Chicago Catholic League

Mt. Carmel Caravan
News
Seton Academy Sting
News
St. Francis deSales Pioneers
News

Chicago Public League

Washington Minutemen/Minutewomen
News

East Suburban Catholic

Marian Catholic Spartans
News

Metro Suburban

Illiana Christian Vikings
News

River Valley Conference

Beecher Bobcats/Ladycats
News
Illinios Lutheran Chargers
News

South Suburban Blue

T.F. North Meteors
News
T.F. South Rebels
News

Southland Athletic Conference

Bloom Twp. Blazin' Trojans
News
Crete-Monee Warriors
News

SouthWest Suburban Blue

Homewood-Flossmoor Vikings
News

SouthWest Suburban Red

Thornridge Falcons
News
Thornton Wildcats
News
Thornwood Thunderbirds
News