As was the case for their nine regular-season victories, the approach and result were no different for the Madison Warhawks in first-round region-playoff action.
Top seed, defending champion and host Madison (10-1) used stingy defense and dominated with a strong running attack on offense to score early and often and defeat the No. 8 seed Marshall Statesmen, 35-6, the night of Nov. 12 in a 6D North Region postseason tournament high-school football game. The win was the Warhawks’ 10th in a row.
Next, Concorde District champion Madison hosts the fifth seed and league rival South Lakes Seahawks (6-5) in a Nov. 19 semifinal contest. Madison routed South Lakes, 34-6, in a regular-season game three weeks ago.
The season ended for Marshall with a 5-6 record. The Statesmen also lost this fall in a regular-season contest to Madison, 33-7.
In Madison’s playoff win, behind the running of Alex Jreige and the running and passing of quarterback Connor Barry, the Warhawks scored touchdowns on their first four possessions to lead 28-0 at halftime. Madison then added one second-half TD.
Jreige rushed for 130 yards for Madison and scored two touchdowns on two runs of six yards. Also scoring TDs for Madison was Barry on a one-yard run, Ryan Salvosa on a one-yard run and Benji Frederick on a 32-yard pass from Barry. He was 6 of 9 passing for 93 yards, and ran for 29 more. Connor Sevy kicked multiple extra points.
Also for Madison, John Hurley had a 12-yard run and Darren Knicely had two catches for 20 yards.
The Warhawks amassed 269 total yards and had 15 first downs behind an offensive line of Tyler Whittle, Ciaran Sullivan, Endrees Noory, Grant Boody and Kevin Gaston.
On defense for Madison, the unit bended some but did not break, or give up a score until the fourth quarter. Hurley, Austin Wysocki and Michael Delgado had interceptions. Leading tacklers were Wysocki, Salvosa, Hurley, Travis Allen, Jake Green and Kyle Porter.
For Marshall, quarterback Jeff Ryder was 14 of 24 passing for 96 yards and he threw a touchdown pass. Jack Emory and Owen Buhrman had multiple catches.
Marshall moved the ball well on its first possession, driving into Madison territory, where the march ended with an interception by Wysocki. The Statesmen’s next possession ended with a failed fourth-down run where runningback Nokia Wilson was thrown for a two-yard loss by Salvosa. Wilson was Marshall’s leading rusher, as the Statesmen gained 108 yards on the ground.
An interception set up Madison’s fourth and final touchdown of the first half, as the Warhawks led 28-0 at halftime.
South Lakes has scored 36 points in each of its past two games after the 34-6 loss to Madison in Vienna.
NOTE: Madison will be playing in a region-tournament semifinal for the sixth straight season . . . The Warhawks last won 10 games in a season in 2018. The previous fall, Madison won 11 games.