Mobridge (AP): It was a rematch of last year’s National Championship Game and Plover Nation had high expectations for a thriller. A Game of the Century no less. That’s just what they got.
All 17 fans at John Reid Field at Cold War Memorial Stadium were glued to their seats as the North Central South Dakota Polytechnic Institute (Norcentral) Freaking Plovers slipped past Navy with mere seconds remaining on the clock by a score of 28-24.
Navy brought their famous option offense to town and kept the Plovers on their heels for much of the game. The Midshipmen dominated every game statistic short of the score. Notably, they held the ball on offense for twice the minutes of the Mobridge Maulers.
The Plovers appeared to have things under control until late in the 4th quarter when reserve quarterback Nick Lowery lofted a 71 yard strike to wide out Jack Stanfield. Navy took the lead 24-21 with 2 minutes on the clock.
Time was short but the Plovers methodically drove down field. Out of time outs, with a scant 24 seconds left, halfback Seth Johnson took the pitch left and raced to paydirt from the 3 yard line to seal the victory.
Plover quarterback John Flowers completed 6 passes on 15 throws for 249 yards and 2 scores. But he also tossed 3 picks to help Navy keep it close. Running back Seth Johnson had 83 yards and one score on 9 carries.
The bright spot for the Plovers was the performance of senior wide receiver Kyle Powell. Powell hauled in 4 catches for 189 yards and 2 TD.
We reached Norcentral’s Head Football Coach and Chancellor (for life), Gomer S. Blake after the game.
“Well, we certainly dodged a nailbaiter tonight. Let’s win! Cujos to this Navy squad, they have great athletes and they execrate the option superfluously. Our defense was tied in gnats most of the game. Let’s win!”
“Kyle was solid for us tonight. Next year he will be playing on Sundays. Let’s win! On the other hand I have a bone to pick with Flowers. He needs to protect the ball! The ball is the most precocious gift we have. Let’s win!”
Next week is Fan Appreciation Day as the Virginia Tech Hokies visit Mobridge.
|How They Scored:|
|1st Quarter||3:04 TD Plovers: C. Browning 2 yd run (kick failed)|
|0:13 FG Navy: L Irons 34 yds|
|2nd Quarter||4:03 TD Plovers: K. Powell 63 yd pass from J. Flowers (2 pt)|
|2:16 TD Navy: M. Skinner 4 yd run (L. Irons kick)|
|1:35 TD Plovers: K. Powell 74 yd pass from J. Flowers (W. Miller kick)|
|3rd Quarter||2:32 TD Navy: J. Collins 5 yd run (L. Irons kick)|
|4th Quarter||1:16 TD Navy: J. Stanfield 71 yd pass from N. Lowery (L. Irons kick)|
|0:24 TD Plovers : S. Johnson 3 yd run (W. Miller kick)|
|11-17||3rd Down Conv||1-3|
|0-0||4th Down Conv||0-0|