COUNCIL BLUFFS — Council Bluffs Lewis Central needed this one if it hoped to secure a Class 3-A playoff berth.
Its defense played like it.
After nursing a 7-0 lead over pesky Glenwood at halftime, the Titans held the Rams without a first down on four consecutive possessions to pull away for a 20-7 victory Friday at Titan Stadium.
The win moved L.C. (6-2) to 3-2 in the District 1 standings. When Atlantic (5-3, 2-3) fell to Harlan in overtime a few minutes later, the Titans locked up at least a fourth-place finish.
L.C. beat the Trojans 38-20 here last month, giving it the head-to-head tiebreaker over Atlantic and clinching a postseason berth.
Next week's finale at Creston is now important for L.C. only for seeding purposes. Friday's victory gave the Titans a shot at the No. 3 seed, if they can beat the Panthers (7-1, 4-1) on the road.
“We had to win tonight to still have any kind of chance,” L.C. coach Jim Duggan said. “It was so wide open, nobody knows what's going to happen. ... It wasn't pretty, but we got the job done.”
The Titans got a 53-yard touchdown run from Alex Martin late in the first quarter for the only score before the intermission. They extended the lead to 14-0 on their first series after the half.
Austin Simmons capped a 10-play, 57-yard drive with a 1-yard sneak. L.C. then forced Glenwood (2-6, 0-5) into three three-and-outs and a turnover on its next four possessions.
Luke Harrison's first interception of the season early in the fourth helped the Titans put the game away. He returned the pick to the Ram 22 to set up another TD run by Simmons, giving L.C. a 20-0 lead.
“I think the quarterback made a bad throw, basically,” Harrison said. “I think he threw it to the second receiver, not my guy, and I just saw it. I was looking in the backfield the whole play.
“That was pretty special on my last time playing on this field. That was a good way to end it.”
Martin ran for 138 yards on 26 carries to lead the Titan offense.
Corey Bertini threw for 116 yards and a touchdown for Glenwood. But the Rams managed only 208 total yards, including 92 on the ground, against the L.C. defense.
Many of those yards came on Glenwood's 78-yard scoring drive late in the fourth quarter with the Titans up by 20.
Glenwood (2-6, 0-5)...........................0 0 0 7—7
At Lewis Central (6-2, 3-2)..........................7 0 7 6—20
LC: Alex Martin 53 run (Caleb Shudak kick)
LC: Austin Simmons 1 run (Shudak kick)
LC: Simmons 1 run (kick failed)
G: Brady Douma 4 pass from Corey Bertini (Brandon Bichel kick)
RUSHING: G, Jones 15-49, Smith 7-26, Bertini 7-4, Shatava 2-13. LC, Martin 26-138, Simmons 11-48, Sutherland 2-11, Miller 2-2, Duggan 2-(-13), Team 1-(-2), Shudak 1-(-7).
PASSING: G, Bertini 13-27-1 116. LC, Simmons 7-13-0 92, Duggan 1-1-0 13.
RECEIVING: G, Douma 5-32, Kawcki 4-57, Jameson 1-12, Smith 1-8, Jones 1-4, Shatava 1-3. LC, Harrison 4-42, Pettepier 3-51, Savage 1-12.