In 2 OTs, Brodhead/Juda prevails
WALWORTH—Watching a 14-point fourth quarter lead slip away in the final minute of regulation, a dejected Brodhead/Juda football team was on the verge of losing its third close game of the season.
This time around, the Cardinals found away to escape a wild atmosphere at Walworth Big Foot High School with a 29-27 heart-pounding victory in double overtime.
Brodhead/Juda quarterback Matt Schmitt fired the go-ahead, 7-yard touchdown pass to Ned Slocum and then the game-winning two-point conversion pass to Parker Johnson to seal the win.
The unforgettable victory moves Brodhead (2-2, 2-0) one game ahead of Big Foot (2-2, 1-1) in the Rock Valley South Conference.
“We talk all the time about attitude and effort because they are two things you can control,” Cardinals coach BJ Bockhop said. “A lot of kids could have cashed it in five or six times in the last two minutes, but not this team.”
The Cardinals indeed hung in there after squandering a 14-point fourth-quarter lead.
Chiefs quarterback Zak Greco led the comeback with a 6-yard touchdown run and a 19-yard touchdown pass to Mike Heidenreich on fourth-and-14 to tie the game at 21 with 57 seconds left in regulation.
Brodhead/Juda appeared to have sealed the victory in overtime when Skylar Stuckey intercepted a Greco pass at the 20 and sprinted 79 yards to the 1-yard line before Olin Craig made the game-saving tackle.
Per overtime rules, the Cardinals took possession at the Chiefs' 25 and failed to score.
In the second overtime, Schmitt threw his fourth touchdown of the game on a slant to Slocum, followed by what would be the game winning two-point conversion pass.
“With our team we never lose confidence and fight until the end,” Slocum said. “We knew this game was huge and the biggest game of the season so far, so we couldn't quit.”
Big Foot, meanwhile, had a final chance to answer and responded with a Pedro Sierra 12-yard touchdown catch from Greco to cut it to 29-27. On the two-point try, Greco escaped pressure and floated a pass to Heidenreich that took him just inches out of the end zone for an incompletion.
“There can be no feeling sorry for yourself because that was a great football game,” Big Foot coach Greg Enz said. “They say it's a game of inches and it was literally and figuratively there.”
The Cardinals appeared to measure up as the better team through nearly three and a half quarters.
Schmitt fired a pair of first-half touchdown passes of 4 and 38 yards to Peter Bouc and Jake Pickel, respectively, to lead 14-7.
Schmitt later added a 20-yard touchdown pass to Stuckey in the third to put Brodhead in control 21-7 midway through the third.
The game stayed in Brodhead's favor until the seven-minute mark of the fourth when the Chiefs came back to tie it.
“This is a game that is going to bode well for both teams four to five weeks from now,” Enz said.
BRODHEAD/JUDA 29, BIG FOOT 27 (2 OT)
Brodhead/Juda 6 8 7 0 0 8—29
Big Foot 7 0 0 14 0 6—27
Scoring: BJ—Peter Bouc 4 pass from Matt Schmitt (pass failed). BF—Jackson Enz 31 pass from Zak Greco (Greco kick). BJ—Jake Pickel 38 pass from Schmidt (Slocum pass from Schmitt). BJ—Skylar Stuckey 20 pass to Schmitt (Draven Hawkinson kick). BF—Greco 6 run (kick failed). BF—Mike Heidenreich 19 pass from Greco (Heidenreich pass from Greco). BH—Ned Slocum 7 pass from Schmitt (Parker Johnson pass from Schmitt). BF—Pedro Sierra 12 pass from Greco (pass failed).
Statistics: First downs—BJ 16, BF 18. Yards rushing—BJ 35-118, BF 45-192. Passes—BJ 18-11-1, BF 24-13-2. Yards passing—BJ 177, BF 142. Fumbles—BJ 3-1, BF 2-1. Penalties—BJ 13-110, BF 11-80.