Given the events that occurred in the previous 23 and a half minutes, it made sense that Seton Catholic's final hope of a comeback victory was struck down by an untimely penalty – one of many in the second half that contributed to the team's 28-23 loss to Snowflake on Friday night.
“Every time we turned things around we pulled the gun out and shot ourselves in the foot,” said coach Rex Bowser.
Having taken the lead on a 41-yard field goal by Kyle Johnson very early in the fourth quarter, Seton (2-1) tried to hang on to its tight two-point lead, only to see the Lobos (3-0) drain the clock on their way to a touchdown courtesy of a two-yard pass from Ty Reidhead to Porter Black. The key moment in the drive came two plays prior, when Reidhead ran for three yards to convert a fourth-and-2 attempt from the Sentinels' 7 yard line.
What would later prove to be a case of dastardly hope arose for Seton on the ensuing kickoff, when Niko Villegas returned the ball 53 yards to the Snowflake 24 yard line, giving the host more than three minutes to take the lead.
Alas, the Sentinels' runners ran for losses on the next two plays, and a short completion from Johnson to Antonio Campanella was negated by a holding penalty against Seton. The third-down redo would prove disastrous for Seton, as pressure applied by the Lobos' defense on Johnson led the quarterback to toss the float the ball to Reidhead for the interception.
Seton, however, seemed to stop Snowflake on the next position and was set to receive the ball via punt on a fourth-and-5 play with about 30 seconds left. But the punt never materialized, as Seton got called for one last penalty worth five yards and a game-winning first down for the Lobos.
“I don't even want to know how many penalties we had in the second half,” Bowser said.
The final tally was 10, which was nine more than the Sentinels accrued in a first half that saw the Sentinels convert six of their eight third-down attempts and pick-off Reidhead twice, the second of which came when Dominic Johnson came down with the ball at the end of the half to preserve a 20-14 lead.
But the Sentinels couldn't truly shake Snowflake despite the early good fortune, and a second half that began with the Sentinels marching the ball into Lobos' territory turned ominous when the players kept earning penalty after penalty. As a result, the promising first drive ended with the Sentinels punting on fourth and 52.
Kyle Johnson completed 12 of his 21 passes for 97 yards and tallied a touchdown and an interception, and he ran the ball six times for 34 yards and a touchdown. Campanella led the Seton Catholic ground game with 53 yards on 16 carries and topped the receiving corp with four catches for 50 yards. Dominic Johnson and Brandon Garcia also scored touchdowns for Seton Catholic.
Reidhead was the game's top runner, carrying the ball 13 times for 82 yards and a touchdown while completing six of 13 passes for 84 yards, two touchdowns and two interceptions. Halfback Nik Hall and wide receiver Travis Flake found the end zone for the Lobos as well.
Snowflake 28, Seton Catholic 23
Snowflake 7 7 7 7 -- 28
Seton Catholic 6 14 0 3 -- 23
First Downs: Snowflake 16, Seton Catholic 9
Rushing: Snowflake 47-260, Seton Catholic 25-111
Passing (Comp.-Att.-TD-INT): Snowflake 6-14-84-2-2, Seton Catholic 12-21-97-1-1
Fumbles-lost: Snowflake 0-0, Seton Catholic 1-0
Penalties-yards: Snowflake 9-55, Seton Catholic 11-105
Seton Catholic – Kyle Johnson 15-yard pass to Dominic Johnson (no kick)
Snowflake – Nik Hall 3-yard run (Kegan Kay kick)
Seton Catholic – Brandon Garcia 15-yard run (Kyle Johnson kick)
Snowflake – Ty Reidhead 19-yard pass to Travis Flake (Kay kick)
Seton Catholic – Kyle Johnson 1-yard run (Kyle Johnson kick)
Snowflake – Reidhead 6-yard run (Kay kick)
Seton Catholic – Kyle Johnson 41-yard field goal
Snowflake – Reidhead 2-yard pass to Porter Black (Kay kick)
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