Edmondson coach Pete Pompey reached deep into his bag of tricks against Mervo yesterday and pulled out his team's 20th straight win against city opponents.
Tested like it rarely has been in the last three years, No. 5 Edmondson (3-0) prevailed, 20-14, on Curtis Mitchell's 5-yard, fourth-down touchdown run in overtime. The win, Edmondson's 21st in its past 22 games, demoralized a Mervo team that outplayed Edmondson for much of the game and rallied to tie with 13 seconds left.
"That was a dogfight," Pompey said. "That was two good football teams just going at it toe to toe."
With Edmondson All-Metro defensive end Jason Murphy nursing an injured ankle in the first half, Mervo controlled the line of scrimmage. The Mustangs (2-1) took an 8-0 halftime lead on an 18-yard touchdown pass from Kevin Young (11-for-20, 115 yards) to Sean Hall.
Mervo out-gained Edmondson in total offense, 291-183, and held the Redskins scorless for three quarters. But with 9:49 left, Edmondson quarterback Marvin Moten threw a 29-yard touchdown pass to Anthony Tucker to cut the lead to 8-6.
Another long Mervo drive ended at the Edmondson 13-yard line with 3:42 left, and shortly thereafter Pompey turned to razzle-dazzle.
Facing third and 20 from his own 16, Moten passed over the middle to Danny Dixon, who lateraled to Tavon Williams. The hook-and-ladder timing was perfect, and Williams outran two defenders for an 84-yard score and a 14-8 lead with 1:59 to play.
"We practice that every day," Pompey said, "but we haven't used it in three years."
Mervo refused to surrender, though. Young capped a nine-play, 67-yard drive with a fourth-down, 33-yard touchdown pass to Marc Mason with 13 seconds left. Mason (110 yards rushing, 112 receiving), was stopped on the ensuing two-point try, forcing overtime.
Mervo's possession stalled after a 15-yard penalty. The Redskins then took over and gained five yards in three plays before Mitchell barreled in for the game-winner.
"That was tough," Mervo coach John Blake said. "We need to learn how to win these kind of games."