EAST CHICAGO | The Bears' Martellus Bennett said the other day that if you don't have a good quarterback, why bother having a football team?
"That's right," said Morton senior Torey Armstrong.
With exciting athletes like Armstrong and a stable of go-get-it receivers, Times No. 7 Morton will never be involved in that conversation though Friday night's 19-6 win at East Chicago Central was a bit nerve-wracking for Governor fans.
"As a leader, I take pride in keeping our team together," Armstrong said after passing for 144 yards and one touchdown and running for another. "It's hard at times being a leader but when you have players like we do, it's easy."
Mark Snorton's 1-yard touchdown run and Armstrong's 3-yard score gave Morton a 12-0 halftime lead.
It was a stretch to call the close score a "moral victory" for East Chicago after managing only 43 total yards and just two first downs.
The Governors weren't exactly flying from the roof tops, either, getting Brandon Grasha's PAT kick blocked, and having been stuffed on a two-point conversion run.
But Armstrong's 41-yard TD throw to Darius Coty in the final 3:11 and David Wall's interception of a Carlos Fernandez pass at the Morton 38 pulled Morton (5-1) from choppy waters.
It could've been a wider margin of victory had coach Roy Richards not elected to have his QB repeatedly take a knee at the Cardinals' 6 in the closing seconds.
"With 2 1/2 minutes left, you might consider it," Richards said. "But not against (coach) Stacy (Adams), not against these guys. We hope to see them again and we respect this field. I was here (as a coach) a while back."
Jarrett Dickey had five catches for 93 yards while Snorton and Kenneth Coleman both rushed for more than 50 yards.
It was Morton's defense that impressed Richards the most.
"Our defense is so good. It's hard to score on us, which is why we're so conservative on offense at times," said Richards, his squad holding Central to 113 total yards.
Division I recruit Martayveus Carter was held to 21 yards on 11 carries for East Chicago (4-2). He did have three receptions for 37 yards, but dropped two passes that could've been for big gains. Tre'Quan Burnett had three catches for 55 yards and a score.
"Our defense takes on the huge challenge of taking out the other team's best player," Richards said.
This was a difficult matchup for many to pick, given that Morton was averaging 28.8 points a game and the Cardinals 43.2.
Neither was afraid to play defense, with the Governors having allowed 44 points in five games and E.C. Central 53.