state semis next week. “Barry Hargraves made that (game-winning) touchdown catch the play after he dropped a touchdown.
“Anthony Wallace could’ve hung his head after that (missed 25-yard) field goal (attempt in the first overtime). I look at that scoreboard and think about how we walked off of this field a year ago and how we’re fortunate enough this year to be on the side of a one-point win.”
And Norcom (8-5) was equally unfortunate. The Greyhounds’ kicker, Emil Lindholm, missed field-goal attempts in the first and second overtimes, but it was his extra point that fell short after it was tipped in the third overtime that was the cruelest blow.
The Greyhounds had just taken a 6-0 lead when Taurus Jones — his team’s defensive star with 14 tackles — made a diving catch of Jacoby Smith’s pass that a Phantom batted in the end zone. Norcom players, on the field and rushing from the sidelines, celebrated so exuberantly that they were penalized 15 yards ahead of the extra-point attempt.
“You’ve got to know the time and score and the situation in the game,” Norcom coach Larry Archie said. “It’s unfortunate that it was called, but it was a penalty.”
Phoebus, which had not attempted a pass through four quarters and the first two overtimes — in part because of Norcom defensive pressure on quarterback Chris Daniels the few times he tried — followed with three incompletions in the third overtime. What appeared to be a sure touchdown squirted through Hargraves’ hands on third down.
But on fourth down, Daniels rolled away from pressure and threw to an open Hargraves, who had gotten in front of the defensive back covering him. The 10-yard touchdown tied the game at 6.
“It was amazing,” Hargraves said. “I just had to look it in and make a play because I knew we couldn’t go home.”
Then Wallace stepped up to attempt the extra point. Phoebus’ usually reliable kicker had seen his game-winning field-goal attempt from 25 yards bounce off of the right upright in the first overtime.
It seemed at that point the game might go on forever. With both offenses hampered by the mud, and excellent defensive play, Phoebus netted only 167 yards and Norcom 131 — overtimes included.
Phoebus’ Anthony Turner (28 carries, 124 yards) broke for a 44-yard gain on the second play from scrimmage to start the game, but was denied a touchdown by Antwuan Powell-Ryland’s diving Hail Mary tackle at the 20. The Phantoms came up empty when Wallace missed a 36-yard field-goal try.
Norcom’s Celon Lawrence broke for a 66-yard gain on a jet sweep in the second quarter, but was denied a touchdown when
“You’ve got to know the time and score and the situation in the game. ... It was a penalty.”
Phoebus defensive back Latrelle Smith caught him and pushed him out of bounds at the 5.
The Greyhounds failed to capitalize on that opportunity when the holder couldn’t handle the wet ball on the snap for a field-goal attempt.
Norcom had an opportunity to score in third quarter, when Demonte Dunlap ran 53 yards on a draw to the Phoebus 21. The Phantoms’ Davaughn Davis ended that threat two plays later with an interception in the end zone.
So it all came down to Wallace and his PAT in the third overtime.
And when he split the uprights to give the Phantoms the victory, redemption read numerically.
“I was mad, but I had to keep my head up,” Wallace said of his miss in the first overtime. “When (the extra point) went in, I was happy because my brothers were depending on me and they were happy.
“We lost 7-6 last year and won 7-6 this year. It’s God’s plan.” Marty O’Brien, 757-247-4963, mo[email protected]lypress.com Twitter @MartyOBrienDP
Thomas White is overcome with emotion after Norcom lost to Phoebus for the Class 3 Region A title Saturday at Darling Stadium.
Phoebus' Anthony Turner, who had 124 yards on 28 carries, escapes the tackle of Norcom's Naquis Cross. The Phantoms did not throw a pass until the third overtime. Norcom coach Larry Archie, on the 15-yard infraction that led to a missed PAT