Social media provides an excellent spot for high school kids to jaw back and forth about sports. Most of it seems to take place away from the watchful eyes of adults. But it’s an increasingly important factor on the field.
Donovan Dey ran for 229 yards and three touchdowns in Carmel’s 50-7 running clock win at Antioch in the second round of the Class 5A playoffs on Saturday.
Dey had that social media chatter on his mind after the victory.
“Our plan was just hit them in the mouth,” Dey said. “For the past week they’ve been talking a lot of smack and our team doesn’t take kindly to that.”
The Sequoits (10-1) entered undefeated and apparently were full of confidence. But things went bad for them quickly. The Corsairs (10-1) led 21-0 after the first quarter.
Johnny Weber’s eight-yard TD pass opened the scoring. Then Dey scored on a four-yard and a 61-yard run.
“We don’t do a lot of talking,” Carmel coach Jason McKie said. “We let other teams do the talking. Our pads and our helmets do the talking for us. The main thing is, the team that stays focused and is mentally smart will put themselves in the right position.”
Carmel has the area’s most interesting coach staff. McKie and assistant coaches Rashied Davis and Olin Kreutz are former Bears. Adam Hoge, a reporter who covers the Bears, is another assistant.
Radio and TV personality David Kaplan was on the Carmel sideline to watch the Corsairs.
“Our success starts from the top down,” Weber said. “We have three ex-NFL players putting in countless hours to help us. They played at the highest level and know football better than anyone. So we get down to details and everyone is buying into what the coaches are saying.”
Weber was 9 for 14 for 61 yards with three touchdowns. Freshman Trae Taylor, who already has offers from Michigan and Miami, came in at quarterback late in the game and threw two passes for 41 yards.
Dey is a junior. Sophomore wide receiver Kai Owens caught a TD pass and junior tight end Jack Greiber caught another.
“They are young but they’ve been playing up their whole life,” Weber said. “They’ve been through it. The offensive line is young but they’ve been in it too.”
The Corsairs’ offensive line, led by 6-8, 296-pound junior Tommy Lamberti, dominated the game.
“My gosh they did amazing,” Dey said. “I’m super proud of them. The most important thing was to put our foot on [Antioch’s] throat and just keep it there the whole game.”
Antioch, which is less than two miles from the Wisconsin state line, has qualified for the state playoffs for the past seven seasons. The Sequoits have been consistently good for a while and Athan Kaliakmanis, a 2021 Antioch grad, is the starting quarterback at Minnesota.
Martin Cohen scored the Sequoits’ TD on a two-yard run late in the second quarter. Nick Day had 21 carries for 69 yards and quarterback James Sheehan was 9-for-14 for 90 yards.
Carmel will host Nazareth in the quarterfinals next weekend.
“I didn’t let the guys talk about [winning the state title] during the season,” McKie said. “But that’s our ultimate goal. We know there’s a lot of things that we have to clean up if we want to reach that goal.”