SENECA – It was senior night Friday at Seneca High School. The Fighting Irish, with a playoff berth already in hand, honored their graduating athletes before the game against Herscher.
For the Seneca football team, that meant a tip of the helmet to the 14 seniors on the team who helped the Fighting Irish make the return trip to the playoffs this season.
It seemed only fitting then to see the seniors step up early for Seneca. Senior quarterback Bo Taylor scored the first touchdown of the day from 9 yards out at 6:32 of the first quarter to give Seneca the lead. The PAT run was held short, however, and the Fighting Irish lead was 6-0.
After a series of punts, the Irish got the ball back when senior linebacker Devin Leo intercepted a pass to quell a Herscher drive. Leo later recovered a fumble, too.
The Tigers finally got on the board with 1:42 left before the half after a Seneca penalty. That came when quarterback Brendan Powell took one in from 2 yards out. Tyler Fisher’s kick then gave the guests the lead at 7-6.
That lead lasted all of 1:14 as Seneca went straight downfield and scored – thanks again largely to the seniors.
Taylor ran for gains of 8 and 11 yards before Tommy Lovett was stopped for no gain. Taylor then launched a bomb downfield that senior receiver Austin Applebee caught for a 36-yard gain. With the ball sitting at the 14-yard line of Herscher, Taylor then scrambled behind the line, juked and ended up going up the middle for the score. He then ran in the PAT to make it a 14-7 game at halftime.
Taylor scored at 5:09 of the third quarter but the kick failed to make it 20-7. That capped a 10-play drive that went 79 yards in 5:40.
Taylor would continue his dominance with an 81-yard touchdown run at 9:54 of the fourth quarter. Applebee’s PAT kick made it 27-7. Minutes later he would convert his fifth touchdown of the game to make the score 34-7.
Seniors on the team for Seneca this year include: Taylor, Applebee, Leo, Lovett, Ben Barnett, Cole Klicker, Trevin Seul, Kyle Odum, Matt Johnson, Brad Wyss, Chance Gonnam, Nick Huffman, Bret Wright and Riley Jones.