Century had the ball on fourth-and-goal in overtime against Manchester Valley on Thursday.
The Knights were stopped short of a touchdown that could have put them ahead, but the Mavericks regained control of the ball. Junior running back Brandon Yingling advanced five yards on three plays, but could not get across the goal line.
That’s when junior kicker Dayne Koontz came on to attempt a 20-yard potential game-winning field goal. His kick sailed through the uprights and as it did so, the Mavericks’ players on the sideline stormed onto the field to join their teammates in celebration of a 10-7 victory.
“These guys, I mean, we came out really slow and gave up some early points and they found a way to tie the game up,” Mavs coach Tony Shermeyer said. “We found a way to prevent them from getting points on the board and ultimately put it through the uprights to win the game. I told these guys how proud I am of them with the way they stuck in there. They showed a lot of heart.”
Century (1-4, 1-1 county) got on the board first with 1 minute, 56 seconds left in the first quarter when senior quarterback Collin Ende connected with junior receiver Jalen Stanton for a 5-yard score. Senior kicker Dylan Fitzgerald kicked the extra point and the Knights led 7-0.
The teams traded three-and-outs and the back went back into the Mavericks’ hands when junior quarterback Dallas Engel was intercepted by Century junior running back Jimmy Wiley with 6:08 remaining in the first half.
The Mavericks (3-2, 1-1) gave up two interceptions on the night and each was picked off by a different Century player. Engel completed eight passes on 14 attempts for 64 yards on the night.
Things changed for the Mavs in the second half when junior receiver Dan Melville found space for a 30-yard score with 8:30 left in the third. Koontz’s kick was good and the teams were tied, 7-7.
“It was great,” Melville said. “We got the touchdown and it gave us confidence to do more in the game and keep the energy up to just keep going.”
Fitzgerald attempted a 30-yard field goal for the Knights with 8:20 remaining in the game, but it was no good and that was enough to carry the county foes into overtime.
Century senior running back Stephen Shinholt had 10 carries for 42 yards and Ende had 10 carries for 48 yards — he also completed 10 passes on 26 attempts for 70 yards and a touchdown.
Melville had five carries for 56 yards for the Mavericks.
“I told them, defensively, just keep plugging away,” Shermeyer said. “I think they were sort of setting up for it too on the other sideline and I was trying to manage the clock and I didn’t want to lose the game on a turnover, I didn’t want to lose the game because we blew a play on offense or defense. I wanted to play a nice solid game, go to overtime and our defense played great.
“We let them win it for us and they came up with that stop right inside the 1-yard line and that was huge for us.”
Man Valley 0 0 7 0 3 — 10
Century 7 0 0 0 0 — 7
C-Jalen Stanton 5 pass from Collin Ende (Dylan Fitzgerald kick)
MV-Dan Melville 30 run (Dayne Koontz kick)
MV-Koontz 20 field goal