Football (Varsity) New Palestine High School

Week 7 football preview: Dragons at Shelbyville

By Andrew Smith | Sep. 30, 2022 7:51 AM


The No. 1 New Palestine football team hits the road again this week for a trip to Shelbyville. Game info 4A #1/1 New Palestine Dragons (6-0, 4-0 HHC) at Shelbyville Golden Bears (1-5, 1-3 HHC) Time: 7 p.m. Friday, Sept. 23 Site: McKeand Stadium, Shelbyville (directions: Tickets: $6, available at the gate. Broadcast audio: (pregame coverage begins at 6 p.m.) SETTING THE SCENE The Dragons hit the road for the fourth time in five weeks with a visit to Shelbyville. This will be the Dragons’ second game on grass. They beat Yorktown 50-13 in Week 3. This is the 27th meeting between the two schools. The Dragons lead the all-time series 17-9 and have won nine straight meetings since 2013. New Palestine has shut out Shelbyville three consecutive meetings, including a 52-0 win last year. Grayson Thomas ran for 153 yards and three scores and the Dragons ran for 379 yards in that victory, in which they scored 42 first-half points. The Dragons are in possession of the HHC’s Helmet trophy. They held it from 2013-20 and regained possession after a 42-6 victory at Mt. Vernon in Week 4. DRAGONS NOTES Senior QB Danny Tippit tied a school record with five touchdown passes in the Dragons’ 42-7 victory over Greenfield-Central last week. It was the first five TD pass performance for a Dragon since Alex Neligh did so in 77-42 victory over New Prairie in the 2014 state championship game. He completed 20-of-26 - a career-high in completions - for 215 yards in the contest, throwing two TDs to Blaine Nunnally and also conncting with Kyler Kropp, Ty Mitchell and Cameron Rollyson for scores. Tippit is completing 70 percent of his passes (81-of-115) for 1,257 yards. It’s the 19th 1,000-yard passing season in NPHS history and the 10th consecutive year with a 1,000-yard passer. He has thrown three consecutive 200-yard games, with 220 vs. Mt. Vernon, 310 vs. Pendleton Heights and 215 vs. Greenfield-Central. Senior Isaiah Thacker had a career-high nine catches for 71 yards last week. He moved into seventh place on the NPHS career receiving list with 1,121 yards. He needs 53 yards to catch Brandon Collins and move into sixth place. Senior LB Eli Hook led the Red Rage with 18 tackles, a career-high, last week. Blaine Nunnally added 15 stops and Michael Thacker 13. Thacker now has 17 tackles for loss and six sacks this season. The Dragons are plus-11 in turnover ratio, with 14 takeaways and three giveaways. Daniel Thacker has three interceptions and a fumble recovery to lead the team. Junior RB Grayson Thomas tallied 158 yards last week, the seventh-highest total of his career. He has five 100-yard games in six outings. He now has 3,275 career rushing yards and 46 touchdowns. He needs 32 yards to catch Nick Roudebush for fourth place on the NPHS all-time rushing list and 69 yards to catch Alex Neligh for third. Thomas needs 114 yards to become the first Dragon to post three 1,000-yard rushing seasons. Junior OL Ian Moore is the No. 1-rated offensive tackle nationally by Rivals, who has Moore rated as the No. 1 Class of 2024 prospect in the state and No. 33 in the nation. SCOUTING THE GOLDEN BEARS Shelbyville earned its first conference win since 2018 in Week 3 with a 22-20 victory over New Castle. The Golden Bears have been outscored by an average of 39-9 in conference games. Shelbyville is led by QB Eli Chappalow, who has 512 passing and 128 rushing yards. Junior Axel Conover leads a balanced rushing attack with 295 total yards. Cael Lux has 200 receiving yards on 10 catches, while Jackson Parker has 190 receiving yards. LOOKING AHEAD The Dragons hit the road for the next two weeks, traveling to Shelbyville next week and then to New Castle Sept. 30. FOLLOW US All New Palestine games are broadcast free-to-listen at All home games are also video streamed at on a pay-per-view basis. NPHS Athletics is on Facebook (NewPalestineDragons), Twitter (@NPHSDragons) and online ( (Photo credit: Aaron Smith / NPHS Avalon)

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