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Wolves need overtime to edge ‘Cats, 41-38

By John Miller, 09/15/23 10:17 PM

HOPE – Four quarters wasn’t enough Friday night as Prescott and Hope renewed their long-standing rivalry. It took overtime with Prescott managing to pull out a 41-38 win over the Bobcats.

It was an odd game with momentum shifting from team to team without rhyme or reason. Prescott had fits in the first quarter, turning the ball over three times and having a touchdown called back due to a penalty. Hope, on the other hand, took advantage of Prescott’s miscues and scored 14 unanswered points before the Wolves got things going.

The Wolves got on the board the first time on a touchdown pass from Pierce Yates to Dwayne White.

The Bobcats fumbled on Hope’s next series with Prescott recovering at the Wolf 39. However, two plays later, the Wolves coughed the ball up, giving it to Hope at the ‘Cat 40. Period one came to an end with the ‘Cats moving to the Wolf 43. Hope opened the second quarter by driving the rest of the way to score on a 30-yard pass. The point after made it 21-7 with 10:04 to go in the half.

Special teams helped as Jaylen Johnson took the kick at the 22 and returned it to the Hope 15. Two plays later Ja’Noah Harris went in from the four. The PAT was wide right leaving the score 21-13.

Hope started at its 45 but couldn’t get anything going. In fact, the ‘Cats wouldn’t’ score again in the quarter. The punt was tipped and downed at the Hope 47.

Prescott needed eight plays to cover the distance, with Yates hitting P.J. Gulley with a three-yard pass for the score. The Wolves went for two, successfully, to tie the score at 21-21 with 4:16 showing.

The teams traded punts on their next possessions as the game came to the end of the first half.

Hope got the ball to start the third period, with the kick returned to the 30. However, it was three and out for the ‘Cats with the punt rolling to the Prescott 27.

An eight play drive saw the Wolves take the lead, though the drive could have ended sooner but for a shoestring tackle on Harris at the five. Yates carried three straight times, going in from the one for the score. The PAT gave Prescott its first lead of the game at 28-21.

Hope’s special teams got into the act, returning the kick to the Prescott 27. The ‘Cats needed four plays, and the help of a facemask call, to tie the game. The touchdown came on a five-yard run with 5:38 on the clock. The PAT made it 28-28.

Neither team could score for the remainder of the frame, which ended with Hope in possession but facing a fourth and 10 on the Prescott 30. As the fourth period opened, the ‘Cats went for it, getting a completion to the 16. A gain of three on the next play was the end of forward motion as the ‘Cats lined up for a 30-yard field goal. The kick was low and short giving Prescott the ball at its 20 with 10:01 showing.

The Wolves drove 80 yards in eight plays and had to overcome a holding penalty. The score came on a 10-yard pass from Yates to White with 7:35 to go. The PAT made it 35-28.

An onside kick attempt was recovered by the ‘Cats at the Hope 47, but it was three and out for the hosts. It didn’t matter as Prescott suffered its fourth turnover of the night when Yates was picked off and saw the ball returned to the Wolf 15. Three plays later, the ‘Cats scored on a seven-yard run. The PAT knotted the game at 35-35 with 4:48 left.

The ensuing kick went out of bounds giving Prescott the ball at its 35. Hope’s defense stiffened and, on third down, Yates was chased deep into Prescott territory and flagged for grounding as he tried to get rid of the ball and avoid a sack. The punt went to the Wolves’ 46.

It was three and out for Hope with the ‘Cats punting to the Prescott 13 with 1:15 remaining – in theory.

Prescott was unable to move the ball and regulation ended with Yates missing connection with Spencer Hubbard.

This led to overtime. Prescott won the toss and deferred, giving Hope the ball.

Starting at the 10 yard line, the ‘Cats drove to the one in three plays and nailed a 20-yard field goal to take a 38-35 lead.

It took one play for Prescott to end the game. Yates found a wide open Gulley in the end zone on the first play to seal the win.

Prescott will be at home Friday night as the Wolves host the Gurdon Go-Devils. This will also be homecoming for the Wolves. Kickoff is set for 7 p.m.