BOWLING GREEN - Playing in the Division VI regional semifinal against Delphos St. John (7-4) on Friday, St. Joseph Central Catholic has had a season that has provided success and opportunity that most high school football players dream.
The Crimson Streaks seniors had the opportunity to live that dream on Friday night in one of the most prolific stadiums in the state at Bowling Green State University's Doyt L. Perry Stadium, which holds a capacity of more than twenty thousand.
For most of the contest, the Crimson Streaks matched up well against the yearly state-powerhouse Blue Jays in a lopsided 54-21 loss.
To begin the contest, the atmosphere did little to distract standout SJCC senior quarterback and Midland Athletic Conference Player of the Year Zach Yeckley.
He led the Crimson Streaks down the field with an eight-play, 74 yard drive that was capped by a six yard touchdown pass to Jordan Sessler at the 8:52 mark.
One of the plays on the drive was a 53 yard completion to Sessler, which comes as no surprise as the strong right arm of Yeckley has provided a big-play threat all season.
For the season, the senior completed 151 of 271 pass attempts for 2,230 yards and 39 TDs with 23 carries for 197 yards and four rushing TDs.
SJCC coach Scott Knisely said that Yeckley owns every major season and career passing record in school history.
On Friday, Yeckley was near perfect in the first half and led his Crimson Streaks to a 21-13 halftime advantage by proving 13 of 17 passing for 203 yards and three TDs.
In the second half, the senior found himself in a 27-21 disadvantage with 10 minutes remaining in the fourth quarter as he fired a 30 yard strike to Sessler through three defenders for what appeared to be a game-tying score.
However, Sessler was flagged for an offensive pass interference call on the play and the Crimson Streaks would be forced to punt and the fourth quarter downslide happened from there.
First, the game was delayed by light for more than one hour and 45 minutes and when the game returned to play it was anything but what St. Joe football has been all season.
St. John's scored 34 fourth quarter points in total and intercepted Yeckley on three occasions and one of the turnovers was returned for a TD.
Despite the anything but story book ending for the Crimson Streaks, SJCC ends its season with one of the most successful seasons in program history and an impressive record at 10-2.
Senior linebacker Luke Stierwalt ended the contest with a game-high 12 tackles.
Junior defensive tackle Corey Durbin ended with 10, while senior Mitchell Gonya chipped in with a fumble recovery at the 9:36 mark of the first quarter.