JC’s Ethan Bower (22), Ethan Woody (31), and Javier Buenfill (88) give chase to C-D’s (7) Kendal Barner on his 45-yard kickoff return. Photos by Joey Icenhour
By Tim Chambers
It wouldn’t be fair to our readers if we didn’t report the game as it happened on Friday, so we’ll do our best to describe the final 07 seconds of the game. Chuckey-Doak quarterback Matt Palazzo had just run for 33 yards down to the 20, yard line, and seven seconds remained. It was obvious that Doak had the option of one more running play or possibly two passing plays. They chose to run the football with Palazzo taking the snap, dropped back before deciding to run the option, and pitched the football. For some reason, the clock failed to start, and then the officials decided that the play only took 02 seconds, much to the disbelief of all Longhorn fans. They chose to put 05 seconds back on the clock, and Murvin took a direct snap and ran it into the end zone from four yards out for the game-winning touchdown on the extra play.
The ruling left many in disbelief, including the Doak fans, at what they had just witnessed. Head coach Don Kerley was upset after the game but chose to be a good sport and carefully pick his words.
“I thought the game should have gone into overtime,” said Kerley. “You know it takes more than 02 seconds to run a play like that. I just wish they would have put the game in overtime and let it be decided from there. We gave up a big play that allowed them to get down there that shouldn’t have happened. I thought out kids played about as hard as they could. They didn’t leave anything on the field considering what they’ve been through.”
The fact is that the Black Knights dominated the game in terms of yardage but not on the scoreboard. Chuckey-Doak finished the game with 530 yards of total offense, with 400 coming on the ground. Murvin ran for 162yards on 23 carries while Palazzo added 139 on ten attempts. The Horns compiled only 95 yards on the ground with Dalton Brown rushing for 60 of those. Brown also threw for 202 yards to make the final stats more respectable.
Neither team scored in the first quarter, but the visitors got on the board first on a 12 play drive that covered 79 yards. Evan Murvin scored from 5 yards out with his 33-yard run being the big play on the drive. The Longhorns edged closer in the game by going to the air. Brown connected with Ethan Bower on a 30-yard touchdown pass to knot the score at 7-6
Palazzo broke free on a quarterback sneak and took it 50 yards for a touchdown with 2:05 remaining in the half. The Black Knights led 13-6 at the half.Johnson County wasted no time in tying the score to start the second half. Stacy Greer took the opening kickoff 65 yards to play dirt down the far sideline to even the score at 21 all. A costly roughing the punter penalty allowed Chuckey-Doak to keep possession on a third and 16 on their next drive and eventually move in front. Evan Murvan broke a run up the gut for a 49-yard touchdown jaunt to put the Black Knights up 29-21, but the Horns kept fighting back.
It took only 29 seconds for Johnson County to tie the game. Nate Rice took a short pass from Brown and turned it into a 70-yard touchdown, which allowed them to tie the game at 29-29. That would set the stage for the final 07-second marathon. Brown had a big night rushing for 60 yards on 12 carries and throwing for 202 more by completing 6-16 that including two touchdowns. He also ran for a touchdown.
Greer was held to 25 yards on five carries but did have the kickoff return of 65 yards for a touchdown. He led the defense with 14 tackles. Nate Rice kicked four extra points in addition to his 70-yard touchdown reception. Javier Buenfil had ten tackles on defense. Bower added six in addition to his 30-yard touchdown catch.
Brown had a big night but was pretty upset after the game.
“The game should have never ended like this,” Brown said. “We played our tails off. The game should have gone into overtime, and everyone in the stadium knows it.”
Greer chose to touch on what’s left.
“We still have a chance to have a home playoff game plus we’ve got Hampton and Happy Valley still to play. “There is still a lot to play for. We need to bounce back and win our next one.”
The next one won’t take place for two weeks. The Horns have a bye week on Friday and will play West Greene at home in two weeks. Kickoff is set for 7:30 pm.