Daniel Blackford kicked a 19-yard field goal as time expired as Mishawaka defeated Concord 24-21 at Jake Field in Dunlap to capture the 4A Semi-State Championship Friday night.
The Cavemen will play for the state championship next Saturday at 4pm at Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis against Cathedral. It's Mishawaka's first trip to the state title game since losing in 1974.
Mishawaka led 21-14 with 1:11 left in the game when Trevor Willmore threw a 42 yard touchdown pass to Dakota Simon to tie the game at 21.
Cavemen senior Matt Carver returned the ensuing kickoff to the Concord 30 yard line. Then Senior quarterback Sam Schrader rushed 25 yards to the Minutemen 6 to setup the game winning score.
Schrader, a 3-year starting quarterback, had two rushing touchdowns on the night.
Both Schrader TD's capped off incredibly long Mishawaka drives as the Cavemen kept the ball out of the hands of Concord's explosive offense. Mishawaka opened the game with a 7-minute drive to take a 7-0 lead on a Schrader QB sneek. Concord ran a total of just two plays in the entire 1st quarter as Mishawaka had possession for 11:28 of the period.
With the game tied at 14, Schrader engineered a six minute and 30 second drive to give the Cavemen a 21-14 lead with 3:30 left in the game. Schrader capped that drive off with a touchdown run as well.
This is the first trip to the state championship as a head coach for Bart Curtis. He dressed for the state finals as a senior for NorthWood in 1980.
Concord coach Tim Dawson, a Mishawaka grad, played on the Cavemen's only other state title appearing team in 1974.
Mishawaka is the only area team left standing. Marian lost in the 3A Semi-State to Hamilton Heights 42-13.