Hor­nets nip Kennett in thriller

Late Eng­land-to-Brown touch­down gives Ox­ford first di­vi­sion win

Daily Local News (West Chester, PA) - - SPORTS - By Bill Ru­dick bru­dick55@gmail.com @bru­dick55 on Twit­ter

EAST NOT­TING­HAM >> The Ox­ford foot­ball team have lost a num­ber of close games this sea­son, many in the wan­ing min­utes.

Fri­day, the foot­ball Gods paid them back. As their se­niors played their fi­nal home game, the Hor­nets cre­ated some late magic for the home crowd of the con­test. Fri­day night as Ox­ford hon­ored their out­go­ing se­niors play­ing their fi­nal home game, the Hor­nets pulled some late hero­ics of their own, Chan­dler Eng­land found Troy Brown open in the end zone with 31 sec­onds left as Ox­ford edged Kennett, 23-22, in a Ches-Mont League Amer­i­can Di­vi­sion con­test. The win was the first in the Amer­i­can for the Hor­nets as they moved to 1-4 in the di­vi­sion and 2-7 over­all.

“It just feels so good to fi­nally win one of these close games,” said se­nior line­backer Bren­don Chew. “We’ve fi­nally had both of­fense and de­fense step up and do what we needed to do. Hope­fully, we’ll close out with a win next week and give the guys com­ing back some­thing to build on.”

Trail­ing, 16-6, to start the fourth quar­ter, the Blue De­mons (1-5, 3-6) bat­tled back with a pair of touch­downs, a 15-yard pass from Jake Dilcher

to Dom D’An­gelo, and a three-yard run from Con­nor Hyzny. The sec­ond score gave Kennett a 22-16 lead with 4:34 to play.

“You could al­most feel it on the side­lines,” said Ox­ford coach Mike Means. “We’ve lost so many tight ones, they could have felt like ‘here we go again.’ But even af­ter they stopped us on that first drive af­ter they took the lead, our guys were up and con­fi­dent when we got the ball back. They be­lieved we were go­ing to get this one”

The Hor­nets took their fi­nal chance on their own 32-yard line with 1:08 left. Eng­land calmly marched the Hor­nets down field on pass plays to the side­line. Helped by a pass in­ter­fer­ence call, the Hor­nets found them­selves with a first down at the Kennett 11.

Eng­land went for the end zone, where the Kennett de­fender an­tic­i­pated Brown run­ning a fade, but he cut back, found him­self open, and Eng­land threw a strike for the 12-yard score. “That was a great call by coach Means there be­cause I was wide open,” said Brown. “All I could think about was that this might be my last chance to catch a touch­down pass in high school. I’m just glad I caught it and we won this game.”

Ryan Han­num, af­ter a penalty and a time out, de­liv­ered the ex­tra point to Ox­ford in front.

“Last week was tough for me, with a cou­ple kicks blocked,” said Han­num. “I was just re­ally happy to make this one and get the win.”

Ox­ford ends its sea­son next week at Octorara, while Kennett hosts Great Val­ley.

“I’m just re­ally happy for the kids that we came out on the right end of one of these,” said Means. “We’re 2-7, but if you take out the Rustin game, I think we might ac­tu­ally be in the pos­i­tive for point dif­fer­en­tial. This could be a big turn­ing point for our pro­gram, They showed they could not get down on them­selves and win one down the stretch.”

BILL RU­DICK — FOR DIG­I­TAL FIRST ME­DIA

Pa­trick Kin­sella goes up high to make a catch that set up Ox­ford’s first touch­down Fri­day night.

BILL RU­DICK — FOR DIG­I­TAL FIRST ME­DIA

Tim Davis scores the first touch­down for Ox­ford Fri­day night.

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