Oge boots Nottingham to victory over Moorestown
HAMILTON » A man of faith, Alix Oge wasn’t about to take credit for being the hero.
“It’s amazing man, and I thank God for this because he can do what I can’t do,” said Oge after his 37-yard field goal in the first overtime gave the Nottingham High football team a 24-21 victory over Moorestown in an entertaining game Saturday. “This was my time man, because God has always been there for me.”
Oge, who was also 3-for-3 on PAT kicks and rushed for 30 yards, said he had no idea how he stayed calm but he knew it was good the moment he hit it.
So did coach Jon Adams, who watched from behind the endzone after undergoing a second knee surgery this week and staying off the sidelines.
“I was really nervous when we threw the ball on second down (in OT),” said Adams, who is not calling plays while recovering. “As soon as we got the ball I would have said run three plays and if you get first down great, and if you don’t, we’ve got the game with Oge. I’m very confident in that young man.”
Oge’s kick helped prevent the Northstars (2-0) from suffering what could have been a demoralizing loss. Nottingham dominated the first half and led 21-6 while rushing for 141 yards. In their first two possessions, they got a 60-yard touchdown run from Ja’ier Nelson and 5-yard scoring run from Diontae Nicholson, who returned from a concussion suffered in August.
After Moorestown got a TD run from Robert Damerjian, Nottingham came right back on Logan Barber’s 20-yard TD pass to Nelson.
The Quakers (0-2), who have lost twice by a combined eight points, made major defensive adjustments at halftime. Nottingham rushed for just 22 yards after the break, and Moorestown took advantage with Brian McMonagle touchdown passes to Adam Robinson in the third quarter and to Nathan Mendys with 1:49 left in regulation. The second was a perfectly thrown, 33-yard lob into the back of the endzone.
Mendys PAT tied it, setting up a bellyburning overtime.
Moorestown had the ball first and on third-and-goal from the 5, Nick Cartwright-Atkins caught a short pass and as he stretched his arm out to try and break the plain, Nottingham stripped it and recovered to set up Oge’s heroics.
“Just a great job by our defense,” said Adams, who was fairly happy with that unit overall. Despite the fact McMonagle threw for 264 yards and Cartwright-Atkins had 10 catches for 98, the two never teamed up for any long, back-breaking plays.
“They had to claw for every point they got,” Adams said. “That’s a very good offensive football team. No disrespect to anybody in our league, but those two guys, they’re the best we’re probably gonna see. I said that before the game and I feel that way even more now.”
As for Adams’ offensive star, Nicholson rushed for 46 yards on 11 carries in the first half and finished with 61 in his first action since Nottingham’s first scrimmage. Nelson picked up where he left off last week on his first carry; but both were stymied in the second half.
“We got a little careless in the second half but I was proud of the way the kids kept fighting and persevering,” Adams said. “This is going to resonate through our program for the playoffs, hopefully, and catapult us to great things throughout the rest of the year.”
“This means everything for me, my coach, my teammates,” Oge said. “I just love this moment. This is what I’ve been waiting for. This was the time, right here.” Moorestown (0-2) 0 6 8 7 0 - 21
Nottingham (2-0) 14 7 0 0 3 - 24
N-Nelson 60 run (Oge kick)
N-Nicholson 5 run (Oge kick)
M-Damerjian 2 run (kick failed)
N-Nelson 20 pass from Barber (Oge kick) M-Robinson 5 pass from McMonagle (Cartwright-Atkins pass from McMonagle)
M-Mendys 33 pass from McMonagle (Mendys kick) N-Oge 37 FG
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Nottingham’s Alix Oge (1) doubles as the Nottingham kicker and made the gamewinning field goal from 37 yards against Moorestown on Saturday.