The Dexter offense continued to make waves – and there was plenty of water in the second half for waves – as the Dreadnaughts dunked host Pinckney 49-25 to ruin the Pirates’ homecoming and send Dexter to the playoffs for the second consecutive year.
Dexter (6-1) stays on the road next week against the Lincoln Railsplitters.
The Dreadnaughts jumped out to an early lead but the Pirates hung around and were still in the game in the fourth quarter when they cut the lead to 10 points and for some reason attempted an extra point instead of going for two to make it a one-score game – but who are we to judge.
In the end, it didn’t matter as the Dexter offense didn’t let a little rain slow them down. While the bad weather held off early, there was plenty of thunder and lightning on the field.
And the Dreadnaughts struck first – and often.
On just their second offensive play of the game, Evan Krolewski took what seemed to be a simple pitch toward the short side of the field. But in an instant, the senior switched gears and raced down the sideline 86 yards for the first score of the game.
Brady Keough added the extra point to make it 7-0 with 11:23 left in the opening quarter.
But the Pirates struck back. Just over a minute later, the home team threw a ball right down the middle of the field for a 51-yard catch and TD run. Mark Young blocked the extra point to keep Dexter in front at 7-6.
The Dreadnaughts answered right back with the game’s third big play just over a minute later. Krolewski ran one off for 42 yards to move the ball into the red zone for the visitors. QB Colin Parachek hit Rhett Jacobs on a 16-yard TD pass to make it 14-6 with 9:18 still to play in the first quarter.
Parachek then hit Antwan Ficklen on a 57-yard pass along the sideline to move the ball inside the Pinckney 15-yard line. The pass was on the money and Ficklen did a great job of bringing it in while staying in bounds long enough to catch it and even pick up a few more yards.
Parachek then kept it himself on a 12-yard TD run to make it 21-6 with 1:18 left in the first quarter. Yes, this was still the first quarter.
Noah Mitchell had a nice interception down the middle of the field for the Dreadnaughts early in the second quarter. But a penalty stalled the drive that ended in a turnover.
The final couple minutes of the first half were similar to the first few minutes of the half.
The Pirates, who had first and goal at the 8-yard line with less than a minute left, scored on third down to make it 21-13 with 22 seconds left in the half.
But Dexter turned that 22 seconds into seven points.
Parachek, rolling to his left, fired a laser toward the back of the end zone with no time remaining and Ficklen was somehow perfectly positioned to grab it for the score.
So instead of the Pirates riding a wave of emotion and momentum into the locker room after making it a one-score game, the Dreads pushed the lead to 28-13 at the break.
The teams, fans and everyone inside the Pinckney football stadium were greeted to a second-half rain shower – which at times was pretty heavy, sending some of the aforementioned fans heading to the parking lot.
The Pirates scored early in the third quarter to cut the deficit to 28-19 as they continued to give chase.
The Dreadnaughts fumbled near midfield on third and long and the home team looked like they had something cooking. But Dexter’s defense rose to the occasion and got the ball back after stopping the Pirates on downs. It was a big defensive stand by a unit that has been doing just that all season.
Pinckney appeared to have stopped the Dreadnaughts on downs. But during Dexter’s punt, the Pirates were called for running into the kicker which gave Dexter a first down. Note to opposing teams – Dexter does not require additional chances on offense so do not under any circumstances give them a fresh set of downs.
Of course, Dexter made them pay. Converting two fourth-down chances – one on a pass play, the other courtesy of a Pinckney penalty (see note above) – the Dreads scored on a three-yard TD run by Jordan Watson to go up 35-19 with 29 seconds left in the third quarter.
With 10:41 left in the game, the Pirates scored to cut the lead to 35-25. For some reason, they attempted an extra point instead of going for two and the point after was blocked.
Dexter responded as Dexter often does – scoring right away.
Ficklen had a huge kick return that was brought back to midfield on a penalty. No matter. The senior took the handoff on the first offensive play and knocked out the remaining 48 yards to basically knock out the Pirates. He made some sweet moves before taking to the house giving the Dreads a 42-25 lead with 10:16 to play in the game.
Watson had an interception near midfield with 9:01 left in the game but his night wasn’t done just yet.
The Pirates drove the length of the field and appeared to be heading in for a score but the Dexter defense stopped them on downs at the 2-yard line.
Dexter was prepared to run out the clock. Watson had other ideas. He ran 98 yards for the touchdown to cap off the evening at 49-25.