Blue Collar Tandem Lead Martinsville Over Franklin

When Class 5A second-ranked Martinsville traveled to Franklin on Friday night, they weren’t sure what to expect from the Grizzly Cubs’ offense. However, they stuck to their plan and came out victorious with a 30-7 win.

Franklin is led by one of the state leaders in passing yardage, Drew Byerly, but Martinsville knew there was more to their offense. “Franklin’s offense is different from what we’re used to,” said Martinsville coach Carter Whitson. “So, we made some adjustments.”

Those adjustments worked. Franklin quarterback Drew Byerly scored the Grizzly Cubs’ lone touchdown early in the second quarter, then was shut down by the Artesian defense. “The way they came out after Byerly’s touchdown, I loved the hunger they had,” said Whitson. Byerly was held to 5 for 22 and only 44 yards through the air.

After that is was the Travis Griffey and Isaac Osborne show. The Martinsville seniors combined for all of the Arestian touchdowns. The duo also combined for 224 of Martinsville’s 262 rushing yards. “Those are two hard-nosed football players,” Whitson said. “That’s what our offense is built around. Hard working, blue collar people.”

The Artesian defense even found themselves with points on the board after forcing a Franklin safety on a fourth-down punt attempt late in the third quarter.

Osbourne sealed the game with a 28-yard touchdown run in the closing minute of the third quarter.

 

Martinsville quarterback Griffey and tailback Osborne have no issue putting the team on their backs. “We’ve been together for several years,” said Griffey “We don’t plan on ending our careers together until we play at Lucas Oil Stadium in November.” Martinsville (5-0) are already one win away from matching their win total from 2017 (6). Whitson is currently 11-5 in his second year.

With Osborne, it’s a team effort. “Look,” said Osborne. “This entire offense is nothing without our line. They give us the holes and the space to get where we need to. Travis (Griffey) is a thread with his arm and with his feet. Playaction is a whole other thing with us. Give me the ball, or hold it, we’re getting yards.”

As great as the Martinsville offense was, there’s room for improvement. “Don’t get me wrong,” said Whitson. “We need to improve our wideouts. We run a few better routes and we win this game by 20 more points.” You wouldn’t be able to tell as Griffey went 20 for 26 and 208 passing yards.

For Franklin, it’s been a year of struggle. The Grizzly Cub defense has held offenses to less than 21 points one time this season. “It’s definitely been disappointing,” said Franklin coach Chris Coll. “We’ve tried to switch thing up when we have the ball. We’ve only seen limited success with those changes.”

Coll’s time at Franklin has been nothing short of disappointing as he fell to 3-12. “Things haven’t gone our way,” said Coll. “We still have half of a season left to turn things around. Tonight though, we just couldn’t stop then on the run.” Martinsville could seemingly run wherever they wanted at will.

 

Martinsville hosts fifth-ranked Whiteland (4-1) on Friday. “Tonight was a great road win,” said Whitson. “However, the road to state continues tomorrow morning. We watch film and get ready for a tough Whiteland team.”

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