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Margaretta claws way to victory over Perkins

Butch Wagner • Nov 2, 2010 at 2:27 AM

High school football at its best.

That sums up the rivalry game between Perkins and Margaretta Friday night at the Duck Pond with little realistically at stake, except pride.

And what a season-ending battle it was, one that really went down to one play, an extra point.

Trailing 28-27 after scoring with 13.3 seconds remaining in regulation, Perkins coach Jason Ziegler decided to go for the win rather than the tie, and Margaretta senior defensive back Brandon Pumphrey came up with the play of the night in the end zone to preserve the win for the Polar Bears.

Pumphrey jarred the ball free from the receiver in the end zone on a two-point conversion play that set in motion a celebration by the Margaretta students who waited patiently to rush the field as the final seconds ticked away.

"I felt the seniors deserved this (a win) and that's why we went for the two, and we had it but the kid (Pumphrey) made the big play," said Ziegler. "That's the kind of season we've had."

It truly was a night in which 25 seniors -- nine from Margaretta and 16 from Perkins -- put everything on the line to end the year on a high note.

For Margaretta, Devin Jones, Pumphrey, Colton Gast, Corey Yontz, Chris VanScoy, Dale Abbott, Zach Braun, Seth Spring and Charlie Chesser were the seniors.

Across the field for the Pirates were their seniors, Evan Laser, Josh Gerold, Caleb Balduff, Joey Snyder, Richard Hohler, Spencer Matthias, Trevor Campbell, Nick Howard, Tim Cutler, Brock Naufel, Drew Hammond, Phil Parker, Jemar Walk, John Orzech, Brett Haeuptle, Tyson Moore, Bryan Feix and Tyler Mees.

Perkins (3-7) was trying to end a disappointing season with three straight victories over teams with winning records.

The Bears garnered their first winning season since 2002 with a 6-4 mark.

"Both teams put it all on the line tonight and it came down to one play and Brandon (Pumphrey) made it with the game at stake," Margaretta coach Rock Farlow said. "It was a great way for our seniors to go and we thought we might make it in the playoffs, but from what I've heard the football god's did not shine on us. We needed a lot of help (from other teams), got some, but not enough."

In the second quarter, the Bears marched off a 75-yard, 17-play drive that covered 7 minutes and 20 seconds before Jones skirted the right side for the last three yards with 1:04 left in the half to give the Bears a 14-6 lead.

Down 14-6 at intermission, the Pirates came out throwing in the second half and Smith was red-hot with 18 of 23 in the last two periods for 216 yards and two scoring strikes, the first to Hohler covering 15 yards in the third stanza, and the last a six-yard toss to Balduff with just seconds left in the fourth period that set up the go-for-broke PAT try for the Pirates.

"I'm really proud of my team, especially the seniors. We told them this week to give it all, and they certainly did that tonight. We could have easily had a winning season but coming up short like we did happened to us so many times this year," Ziegler said.

In the final drive, Perkins covered 70 yards in two minutes without a time-out and Smith hit three passes in succession early (one each to Mike Ebert, Gerold and Balduff) that moved the ball to the Margaretta 45,On third and 15 from midfield, Smith fired a 17-yard pass to Balduff for a first down. The Pirates added a first down to a four-yard pass to Tyson Moore and it was first and 10 at the 20 with 35.6 seconds left.A 14-yard pass to Evanß Laser made it first and goal at the six with 25.6 seconds remaining.The Bears' defense stiffened but Smith fired a strike to Baudfff for the score with 13.3 seconds on the clock.

Then came the try for the two-point conversion.

For Margaretta, Jones and Yontz have produced the bulk of the offense throughout, and it was the same in the finale. Jones scored twice on short run and Yontz tallied the final touchdown in the fourth period on a four-year burst. Jones accounted for 101 yards rushing and 95 passing and Yontz finished his career with 27 yards on 12 carries.

Hohler wound up with three touchdowns in his final game for Perkins, two short runs with a pass reception for 15 yard in between. He gained 86 yards on the ground.

Smith was sensational in the second half as he spread his passes around to seven different receivers.

Ebert, a 6-6 junior tight end, caught seven passes for 101 yards and used his big frame to pull down passes that appeared to be out of his range. Balduff also had a big night with five catches for 44 yards and a score.

Perkins 6 0 8 13 -- 27

Margaretta 8 6 6 8 -- 28

Perkins -- Rich Hohler, 1 run (run failed).

Margaretta -- Devin Jones, 4 run (Corey Yontz run).

Margaretta -- Jones, 3 run (run failed)

Perkins -- Hohler, 15 pass from Brandon Smith (Hohler, pass from Smith)

Margaretta -- Chris VanScoy, 2 run (run failed)

Margaretta -- Yontz, 4 run. (Jones run)

Perkins -- Hohler, 2 run. (Holden Stacy kick)

Perkins -- Caleb Balduff, 6 pass from Smith (Pass failed)


First downs 18 15

Rushes-yards 30-115 46-165

Pass yards 250 95

Att-com-td-int 21-30-2-0 10-4-0-0

Fumbles-lost 1-0 0-0

Penalties-yards 7-60 2-20

Individual statistics

Rushing -- Hohler (P) 18-86; Benkey (P) 7-18; Laser (P) 2-12; Smith (P) 3-minus 11; Jones (M) 25-101; Yontz (M) 12-27; VanScoy (M) 9-37.

Passing -- Smith (P) 21-30-250-2-0; Jones (M) 4-10-95-0-0.

Receiving -- Ebert (P) 7-101; Benkey (P) 2-18; Moore (P) 2-8; Gerold (P) 2-16; Balduff (P) 5-44; Hohler (P) 1-15; Laser (P) 2-39; Galindo (M) 2-52; Yontz (M) 1-13; Moore (M) 1-30.

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