Mishawaka Cavemen fall short at state

Sam Schrader rushed for 190 rushing yards, ran for two touchdowns and threw for one, but it wasn't enough to prevent Mishawaka from falling to Indianapolis Cathderal, 56-29, in the Class 4A state championship game Saturday at Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis.

After Mishawaka jumped to a 14-7 lead on a pair of Angelo Multari scores, Cathedral scored 28 unanswered points to end the first half.

The Irish victory elevated coach Rick Streiff into an elite category as one of four coaches in state history with at least eight state titles. The state title was Cathedral's third in a row and 10th overall.

There were standouts aplenty for the Irish, but perhaps none produced more stunning moments than wide receiver Terry McLaurin. The Cathedral junior scored on the opening play from scrimmage, catching a 79-yard pass from Connor Rice. McLaurin also had a 66-yard punt return and scored on a 41-yard run.

Rice completed 11-of-13 passes for 242 yards and two touchdowns. Wyatt Wood caught four passes for 105 yards and a TD.

Cathedral's Gino Gillum ran for 129 yards and four touchdowns, tying a Class 4A mark for rushing scores.

Unranked Mishawaka was playing in its first state championship game since finishing as the Class 3A runner-up in 1974. Coach Bart Curtis' Cavemen finished 11-4.

“We wanted to get it done, and we didn’t get it done,” explained Curtis. “We didn’t score enough and we didn’t stop them enough. We knew we were going to have to do both those and it didn’t happen.”

“We had a great season,” began Matt Carver, a Mishawaka receiver. “Obviously, the goal was to win the state championship and it didn’t go out the way we wanted to, but we played a tough game and our guys didn’t give up to the end. That’s all Coach Curtis wanted was for us to fight for all 48 minutes, and I think we did that as a team.”

Sam Schrader was awarded the Phil Eskew Mental Attitude Award. The three-year starting quarterback also is a 4.1 GPA student in the classroom and involved in numerous community activities.

“It’s real bittersweet,” he admitted. “It is a great honor and I appreciate the administrators and Coach Curtis for nominating me, and I’m glad I can bring that back to the school and the community.”

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