Murray Independent and Racer Hoops were among the teams sitting on top of the independent division entering play Monday night. Both teams carrying an undefeated 2-0 record, this early season matchup could have important implications later on in the season.
With fans watching from each sideline, the two teams played an evenly matched first half. Racer Hoops controlled the clock utilizing screens and short dump offs to methodically progress the ball down the field. With both teams trading touchdowns, the first half came to a close.
As the second half began, Racer Hoops continued play as Murray Independent strung together quick drives. With a few minutes left, Racer Hoops, trailing by one touchdown, put the ball in the end zone and converted the extra point.
In the closing minutes of regulation, each team frantically fought to score the winning points. In a last ditch effort, Murray Independent ran out of time before they could heave the ball to the end zone.
With regulation coming to a close, the two teams went to overtime. Overtime rules are the same as college football: each team gets a possession and whichever team scores more in its possession wins.
Murray Independent received the ball first and drove down the field quickly scoring on a spectacular catch and elusive touchdown run. Needing only a conversion to guarantee at least one more round of overtime, Murray Independent came up short, being pushed out at the 1-yard line. Racer Hoops would win the game with a touchdown and conversion.
Racer Hoops began its possession with the ball doing what it had done all game. The men ran short draw plays and threw screens over the middle. After another long drive, Racer Hoops finally put the ball in the back of the end zone.
Needing a conversion to win the game, Racer Hoops dialed up a play.
Racer Hoop’s outside receiver slipped relentlessly running toward the end zone. Captain James Kane looked right and threw to the back of the endzone in hope’s of scoring one final time. Receiver Brandon Wiesemann stood open in the back corner of the end zone. With an easy catch, Wiesemann was dog-piled by his ecstatic teammates celebrating their victory.
Kane said he was pleased with his team’s effort.
“They showed a lot of heart,” he said. “Those guys didn’t want to lose. We were down and we came back and they showed a lot of resiliency.”
Wiesemann, player of the game, recounts the winning play.
“As soon as I saw that he was coming to me all I could think was, ‘God I can’t drop this pass’,” Wiesemann said. “I knew I was open and I just had to make sure I caught it. I had dropped one earlier so I was just glad I caught that one.”
Wiesemann said he hopes his team can learn from the game and continue to improve throughout the season.
“We’ve got to pull those flags quicker,” Wiesemann said. “We had a lot of missed flags that probably should have been easily pulled.”
Racer Hoops’ 28-27 victory Monday night moved them into a two-way tie for first place with the 3-0 Untouchables. Murray Independent fell to a three-way tie for third place with a 2-1 record.