Tag Archives: Columbus East

Highlanders face Columbus East tonight for sectional championship

By JD McKay

Tonight the Highlanders will attempt to redeem themselves after a 55-7 loss earlier this season against the Columbus East Olympians. Entering this sectional championship game, FC has won four straight since being thumped by East, including two straight wins over rival New Albany.

While losing by 48 points sounds bad, players and coaches believe there were some positive points in the game.

Senior fullback and linebacker Zach Rodgers said that the Highlanders played defense well at the beginning of the game, forcing two fourth downs against East on their first two drives.

Tonight, FC will change the approach used last time they played East.

“We’ll blitz a little bit more, we’ll be a little more aggressive and not sit back. We’ll try to dictate what their offense does, not let them do that to us, and change our coverages a little bit,” said assistant coach Alan Hess.

Two main improvements are needed to win this week: stopping East’s senior running back Jamon Hogan, and moving the ball on offense.

In their last bout, Hogan had 163 yards and two touchdowns to power East’s offense.

Hess said FC needs to tackle Hogan better to beat East.

The Highlanders double tight-end formation was successful in the second half, and that could be key to a Highlander win tonight.

“We need to run the ball down their throat, and get yardage every play, and get first downs,” said senior running back and defensive end Jason Cundiff.

According to Hess, tonight’s keys to success are “maintaining our gaps, playing with incredible passion, and pursue like wild banshees.”

Bottom Line- This incredibly talented East team will make winning Floyd’s third sectional, and second under head coach Brian Glesing, incredibly difficult. However, because of senior leaders, and players that believe they can win, this might be the team to finally beat the seemly invincible Hoosier Hills Conference powerhouse.  

Highlanders face Columbus East in significant conference game tonight

Photo by Taylor Watt

By JD McKay

Tonight the Highlanders will face their toughest foe this season. Floyd is ranked fifteenth going into the game and the Columbus East Olympians are ranked ninth in 5A, according to Maxpreps.com. The Olympians have dominated the football history winning 25 of 40 games and have not lost to the Highlanders since 2003.

This season, the team has been hit hard with injuries, particularly in their offensive line. They have lost both starting guards Reid Suer and Jarrett Laduke to torn ACLs and backup Tyler Milliner to ligament damage in his thumb.

Aside from injuries, they have four first-year offensive linemen.

“I’m expecting us to fire out as usual, and even though we don’t have the size advantage I know that we are fast and have got our plays down,” said returning starter Clay Miller.

However, the FC offensive backs think they have the keys to success this week.

“We need to run hard this week, and don’t let one guy tackle you,” said senior fullback Zack Rodgers.

Led by Jason Cundiff’s 376 yards and 9 touchdowns, the Highlanders have the right backs to get the job done. Floyd’s defense will have to step up to win this week.

“I put it on our defense. We need our linebackers  to read the ball very well, we need our d-line to do a great job getting hands on people, and our defensive backs to keep the ball in front of them,” said defensive coordinator Alan Hess.

Rodgers reiterated Hess’ point about how important the defense will be.

“Wrap up, and just make plays. You can’t wait for the running back or receiver to get to you, you’ve got to meet them at the line of scrimmage,” said Rodgers.

A Highlander win should mean Floyd wins conference, ending East’s dominance in the Hoosier Hills Conference. Not to mention handing the Olympians their first loss since 2006 to a team in the conference.

Bottom Line- Due to a young offensive line, points for the Highlanders will not come as easily as they did against Providence. For Floyd to beat East, their defense will need to step up big time. If the game gets out of hand, it will not be good for the Highlanders, but in a defensive showdown, the Highlanders seem to have the upper-hand.


Columbus East defeats FC 49-14 on Friday

Photos by Braden Schroeder

Community gathers to commemorate classmate


By Natalie Allen and Amber Bartley

Silence fills the stands as students think about and pay a short tribute to a late classmate.

On May 31 of this year, 17-year-old Chase Brannon passed away. The FC community came together at the Columbus East game this past Friday, Sept. 26 to memorialize the tragic death of this young man.

“Well, I know Chase loved the Columbus East game and would be one of the main supporters standing in the front cheering on his friends. Remembering him for this game makes it seem like he’s not really gone, and in general Chase was looking forward to finishing senior year with a bang and making memories with all of his friends and family,” said senior Austen Jones.

Principal Janie Whaley also said that the tribute brought the class closer and that Brannon had a tremendous impact on fellow students.

“I thought it was good for the class to come together and honor him. It’s another chapter in his story and Chase touched a lot of people. He was not a kid that was just with one group only. For that reason, it really hit the school hard because he touched so many people,” said Whaley.

Students and faculty members expected and great turnout and with no surprise received it from combining homecoming and honoring Brannon.

“It was great to see this much support for someone who made such a difference in the lives of FC students,” said Jones.

Senior Chase Blakeman also had high hopes for an immense amount of people to show up.

“I feel like the students liked the idea of honoring him at this game. I saw it as a way to bring the school together in memorial of a good guy,” said Blakeman.

Students were also very pleased that the student body and administration created this game as a tribute to Brannon.

“I think the entire student body and everyone who knew Chase was thrilled that FC chose to honor Chase at the football game,” said senior Gabby Gibson.

Blakeman expressed how Brannon had touched a number of people with his personality.

“The significance of honoring Chase was honoring the awesome person he was, how he brightened people’s days with his sarcasm and witty jokes and the good times people shared with him,” said Blakeman.

However, honoring Brannon at the game was not the only way FC decided to revere him. Seniors Ben Banet and Collin Sharp proposed that the school should plant a tree in his memory.

“Me and Ben Banet went into Mrs. Whaley’s office on the last day of school and talked to her about it,” said Sharp.

Business teacher Chris Street noticed the way students gathered together to get through a tough time when a fellow classmate passes.

“It’s confusing for a teenager to deal with the loss of someone. For some people, this is the first time that they have lost a classmate or a close friend or a relative in some cases. For the students, I think it’s a way for them to feel that contribution, but they’re doing a lot of things besides the t-shirts. For every t-shirt we sell, a donation is going to go to his scholarship fund. We’re also taking donations for a plaque to put with a tree that we’re going to plant outside. These are all student ideas,” said Street.

Street added that the students and faculty are looking for good outcomes to a saddening situation.

“They want to be sure that he is remembered. Out of tragedy, you learn to try to find something positive and try to do something positive out of it. All around, we’re seeing kids rise up and do good things in light of a negative situation,” said Street.

Overall, students, faculty members and administrators are truly commemorating Brannon, respecting and remembering him in anyway possible.

“When you lose someone special, especially so young, it seems impossible to find a gesture that is significant enough to honor them. Chase was such an awesome person. Remembering him is something we will do for the rest of our lives. Little pieces of the past will remind us of Chase, always smiling and laughing, and his legacy will stay alive through memories of all the good times,” said Gibson.