Carolina For­est’s gam­ble pays off

The Sun News (Sunday) - - Sports - BY T.J. LUNDEEN

With the game on the line, both Carolina For­est coach Marc Mor­ris and quar­ter­back Ma­son Gar­cia had no hes­i­ta­tion. The duo elected to ride the hot hand of Gar­cia and go for a two-point con­ver­sion in over­time, con­vert­ing the try to de­feat Lex­ing­ton 36-35 in the first round of the Class 5A play­offs at Brooks Sta­dium on the cam­pus on Coastal Carolina Univer­sity on Fri­day.

The Pan­thers de­feated Lex­ing­ton in the play­offs for the sec­ond straight year, this time rid­ing the legs of run­ning back David Legette and Gar­cia to a dra­matic vic­tory.

“In a game like this one, you’ve got to give credit to the play­ers on both sides,” Mor­ris said. “Their play­ers fought hard to get it to over­time and our guys did ev­ery­thing they could to come out with the win. This one was tough, for sure, and our guys re­ally gave it all they had to make the plays when we needed them most.”

In the first half, the game looked to be a barn­burner, with Lex­ing­ton march­ing right down the field to score on its first pos­ses­sion, only to be matched by Carolina For­est and Gar­cia. The teams would trade scores in the sec­ond quar­ter, with Gar­cia fin­ish­ing the first half with three rush­ing scores and a pass­ing touch­down to Jack­son Weather­wax to take a 28-21 ad­van­tage into the break.

Then, all at once, the scor­ing stopped.

The sec­ond half saw both teams move the ball seem­ingly

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