Tornados fall in triple overtime thriller to Lenoir-Rhyne, 33-27
Gist puts Brevard ahead in regulation with 62 yard fumble recovery touchdown
Hickory, N.C. - Kelvin Jeter’s one yard touchdown scamper sent the Tornados and Bears into triple overtime on Saturday afternoon at Moretz Stadium, but Brevard was unable to put points on the board in the final period as Major Herron scored from 25 yards out in leading L-R past BC, 33-27.
Reese led the Tornados (2-4, 1-3 SAC) on the afternoon with 45 yards on 16 carries and a touchdown. The senior signal caller also went 10-for-22 through the air for 105 yards, with Eric Watts (eight receptions, 79 yards) and Andre Overholt (two receptions, 26 yards) the main recipients for the Tornados. Prince Simunyu led all players with 13 tackles in the contest, while Richard Ray had 10 tackles, including four behind the line of scrimmage, and added a forced fumble that directly led to Michael Gist’s 62 yard fumble return for the go-ahead BC score in the third quarter.
Herron led Lenoir-Rhyne (3-2, 2-0 SAC) on the ground with 93 yards on 26 carries for two scores, including the game winner, while Isaiah Whitaker recorded 74 yards on 22 attempts. Herron was also 8-for-15 through the air for 70 yards, with Artis Gilmore on the receiving end of the majority of the passes, hauling in six balls for 40 yards. Michael Green led the Bears defense with nine tackles and nine L-R defensive players recorded tackles behind the line of scrimmage in the game including sacks by Jason Arenillas, Chris Carter and Jimmy Long.
The Bears struck first on the opening drive of the game as Lenoir-Rhyne moved the ball 64 yards on 15 plays, converting once on third down and once on fourth down before Herron plowed his way through the line of scrimmage from one yard out to give the hosts the 7-0 lead with 8:42 left in the first quarter.
The lead was extended as the BC special teams woes continued for the third straight week. On fourth-and-9 from the Brevard 14, Eric Watts lofted a 39 yard punt fielded by Michael Green at the Lenoir-Rhyne 47 yard line. The sophomore weaved his way downfield through the defenders, stopping 53 yards later as he crossed the goal line with 6:54 left in the first half to give the Bears the 14-0 lead.
The Tornados responded on the following drive, taking over on their 35 yard line after Kelvin Jeter’s 24 yard kickoff return. Brevard marched down the field on 10 plays, with Jeter recording 22 yards on the ground and Reese picking up a key third down with a 15 yard carry, before the Tornados drive stalled on the 20 yard line. Freshman kicker Austin Clark drilled the 37 yard field goal attempt to put Brevard on the board with 2:04 left in the first half.
After both sides punted to open the second half, the Tornados took advantage of an L-R personal foul and a defensive pass interference penalty to move the ball down to the Bears one yard line. Reese carried the ball across the stripe on second-and-goal cutting into the lead. Clark’s extra point attempt failed, leaving the score at 14-9 with 10:56 remaining in the third quarter.
Brevard’s defense took over on the next two L-R offensive possessions as Rufus Jenkins ended the first drive when he forced the ball loose at the BC 38 yard line where it was recovered by C.J. Wilson. The second drive also ended in BC territory on their first play from scrimmage as Ray punched the ball out of Graham Duncan’s grasp where it was recovered by Gist at the BC 38 yard line. The senior safety carried the ball down the field the remainder of the way, crossing the goal line with 3:06 left in the third quarter, and Reese’s pass to Overholt was good as Brevard went up 17-14 with one quarter remaining in the game.
The Bears tied the game up with 3:35 left in the game on Colin Corpe’s 25 yard field goal attempt and nearly won in regulation, but Corpe’s 56 yard attempt fell short as the teams went into overtime knotted up at 17 apiece.
The teams traded field goals in the first overtime as Clark drilled home the 30 yard attempt, while Corpe matched with a 33 yarder to send the teams into the second extra frame.
This time both teams traded touchdowns as Chris Robinson carried the ball in from 15 yards out, while Jeter answered for the Tornados, carrying the ball across the line on fourth-and-goal from one yard out to send both teams to the first triple overtime game in the SAC this season.
The Tornados took possession first in the third overtime period, but Reese was sacked by Long on third-and-five, forcing Brevard to attempt the go ahead field goal. Clark’s 44 yard attempt had the distance, but hooked left, leaving the Bears needing just a field goal to take the victory. On Lenoir-Rhyne’s third play from scrimmage, Herron took the snap and went the distance, carrying the ball in from 25 yards out to give the Bears the 33-27 victory.
Brevard remain on the road next weekend as they travel to Buena Vista, Va. to take on Southern Virginia University. Kickoff between the Tornados and the Knights is set for 4 p.m.