SPARTA — Highland earned its first-ever victory on a last-second field goal on Friday to get past a pesky Northmor squad, 25-23.
The Knights (1-3, 0-3) proved a tough match for the Scots (2-2, 2-1) despite Highland’s 351-226 yardage advantage. Northmor had only seven first downs in the game, but had a big chunk of its yardage on two big-play touchdowns, the second of which put the Knights in front with 1:37 to play in the game.
Northmor stunned the partisan Highland crowd with Jordan Engler’s 85-yard touchdown on the opening kickoff. The Scots came back with a scoring drive, which ended on Mike Sheppard’s 34-yard touchdown pass from Jake Ulrey with 8:04 to play to tie the game at 7. Highland’s next score came as time ran out in the period, as Justin Staton bulled in from 1 yard out for a 14-7 lead.
The Knights kept the Scots in check in the second quarter, and scored twice to take a 16-14 halftime lead. Jacob Stull had a 2-yard touchdown run with 9:44 left in the half to cut the lead to 14-13, and with 3:24 remaining kicker Cody Setser drilled a 30-yard field goal through the uprights.
Defense was the name of the game in the third quarter, as neither team scored. Highland scored on the first play of the fourth quarter, as Staton had another 1-yard TD run with 11:56 to play which put the Scots up 22-16. As the Knights’ offense was sluggish, they decided on a little razzle-dazzle in order to score later in the period. Quarterback Brian Kartcher sent a pass to Engler, who then lateraled to Stull. Stull finished the rest of the play for a 58-yard touchdown and a 23-22 advantage. Highland, which began its next drive at its own 42, had timeouts to play with, and had the ball at the Northmor 21 when it sent in its kicking team. The ball was set only 5 yards back of center instead of the usual 7 yards, but kicker Zach Miller sent the ball home for the game-winner with .7 seconds left.
Staton ran 30 times for 160 yards for Highland, and Sheppard caught four passes for 31 yards. Ulrey completed 6-of-11 passes for 71 yards.