Prairie City def. Pine Eagle 46-44 OT
HALFWAY - Prairie City's Jim Davis carried the ball four consecutive times during the overtime period, scoring the winning touchdown and the 2-point conversion to give the Panthers a come-from-behind 46-44 victory over Pine Eagle in a thrilling non-league football game on Saturday, Sept. 13.
Davis was the workhorse carrying the ball 20 times for 158 yards and scoring four touchdowns, but it was the grit and determination of the entire team which brought home the victory for the Panthers.
"The chips were down, we came back and scrambled around, sucked it up a little bit and came out on top," Prairie City coach Chris Wood said.
Prairie City (2-0) scored first on the opening drive of the game when Jeremiah Wheeler rambled 53 yards to pay dirt.
Yazzie Voigt hit Greg Waggoner with a pass for the 2-point conversion giving the Panthers an 8-0 lead.
After that, the first quarter belonged to the Spartans as the Panthers had trouble hanging on to the ball.
Prairie City fumbled the ball away twice, allowing Pine Eagle to take a 12-8 lead on a 15-yard run by Brad Casch and a 19-yard pass from Casch to Dusty Traw.
The Panthers were able to stop the Spartans twice on conversion attempts and as things turned out, that was to play a big role in the outcome of the game.
The Panthers were able to move the ball well on the ground against the Pine Eagle defense in the second quarter but were unable to put the ball in the end zone, and the first half ended with the Spartans still on top 12-8.
Traw opened the third quarter scoring with a 55-yard touchdown run on a reverse putting Pine Eagle up 18-8, but Davis scored his first touchdown at the 6:27 mark to cut the lead to 18-16.
Jeff Chamberlin made the score 26-16 with a 5-yard run with 2:56 remaining in the third quarter, only to have Prairie City answer with 12 seconds left on a 10 yard Davis run to make the score 26-24 heading into the final 12 minutes of action.
Things looked grim for the Panthers as the Spartans scored a pair of touchdowns in the fourth quarter to take what appeared to be an insurmountable 38-24 lead.
However, Prairie City pulled together and cut the lead to 38-32 on a 54 yard touchdown pass from Bill Rockhill to Waggoner with 2:58 remaining in the game.
With just 15 seconds showing on the clock Davis tied the score on a 3-yard run, but Prairie City failed to make the conversion and the game went into overtime tied 38-38.
"Our guys really sucked it up and all the coaches are really proud of the team. What a way to spend a Saturday afternoon," Wood said. "They have some good players and some of them are really big, but we hung in there against them. I think they will do all right this season."
In the overtime period, Prairie City had first possession of the ball and Davis went to work.
The Panthers rushed the ball four times at the left side of the Spartans' defensive line with Davis breaking tackles and running over Pine Eagle defenders to give Prairie City a 46-38 lead.
"Jim ran hard and kind of took it upon himself," Wood said. "Our offensive line made some blocks and we ran the ball well against them the whole game."
"The line made holes for me," was all a tired Davis was able to say after the game.
Chamberlin scored for Pine Eagle on a 5 yard run to make the score 46-44, but the Panther defense stepped up as they had the entire game to stuff the 2-point conversion try and give Prairie City the victory.
Wheeler carried the ball eight times for 82 yards, with Brandon Lovell netting 52 yards on seven carries and Gary Moulton gaining 46 yards on eight attempts for Prairie City.
Chamberlain led Pine Eagle with 142 yards on 15 carries.
Prairie City opens play in the Old Oregon League on Friday, Sept. 19 at Cove.
Kickoff is set for 2 p.m.