After two easy wins to start the season, Williams Field came into its matchup Friday night with host Campo Verde with plenty of confidence. But by the end of the first half, the Black Hawks were facing their first deficit of the season and had seen their normally stout offense shut down by the Coyotes.
That’s when 5-foot-10 senior running back Sean Schweichler stepped in and took over, scoring three second-half touchdowns to carry Williams Field to a 24-14 comeback win.
“The little things, the details and paying attention to the little things made all the difference in this game,” Schweichler said. "We faced adversity, but we shook it off and had great teamwork tonight."
Of Schweichler three long second-half touchdowns, none were bigger than his 42-yarder on a fourth-down play that sealed the win. On fourth-and-2 with just about two minutes left in the game, Schweichler took the handoff, broke a couple of tackles up the middle and raced all the way to the end zone for the final margin of victory.
“We sent the house on that last play,” Campo Verde (1-2) coach Max Ragsdale said. It’s fourth-and-2, so we sent everybody. We rolled the dice and actually made a play on him, but he broke it up the middle."
With Williams Field leading 17-14, coach Steve Campbell first tried to draw the Coyotes offsides unsuccessfully. Then, after a timeout, Schweichler was given the ball one final time looking for a first down to run out the clock.
"We knew our defense was strong ,so we weren’t worried about giving the ball back to them. We knew once we got the first down, we could just run out the clock," Campbell said.
On the previous Camp Verde drive, a big fourth-down conversion on the set up the late drama. On fourth-and-long, Luke Pineda hit Alex Madrid for a 32-yard gain inside the Black Hawks 20-yard line. Four plays later, Pineda connected with Jordan Fickas from 7 yards out in the corner of the end zone to bring Campo Verde within three points.
Unfortunately for the Coyotes, they could not stop Schweichler on the most important play of the game.
"He’s (Schweichler) a great player," Ragsdale said. "He didn’t play against us last year, but we knew coming in he was a good player, and we will see where we went wrong against him and correct it.
Schweichler finished with 17 rushes for 184 yards and the three scores.
"It’s great to play a quality opponent, and that’s what you practice for," Campbell said. "It’s great to come out here with the win. With two minutes left in the game, when you score a long touchdown, that is what football is all about."
Williams Field will put its perfect record on the line next week at home against Tucson Canyon del Oro. Campo Verde will look to bounce back at home against Maricopa.
Williams Field 24, Campo Verde 14
WF 0 3 7 14 -- 24
CV 0 7 0 7 -- 14
WF - Gregson 32 FG
CV - Williams 41 INT return (Wells kick)
WF - Schweichler 44 run (Gregson kick)
WF - Schweichler 65 run (Gregson kick)
CV - Fickas 7 pass from Pineda (Wells kick)
WF - Schweichler 42 run (Gregson kick)