CUSHING –The Perkins-Tryon Demons came back to win a shootout against the Cushing Tigers 35-32 at O’Dell Field on Friday night.
Perkins-Tryon coach Bruce Williams says his team’s efforts confirm his belief in them as a team.
“They have a ‘never quit’ attitude,” Williams said. “Our junior and senior classes have been around some real winners, and it has paid off.”
The flood gates opened after the end of a scoreless first quarter. Tigers were able to find the first offensive explosion of the game from a 36-yard pass by quarterback Wil Moyer to Keaton Crooks. Two plays later, Moyer scrambled on a rollout pass for a one-yard touchdown, making the score 6-0.
The Demons answered back quickly, driving down the field and scoring a touchdown on an 18-yard run by running back Kenny Bell.
Each team found themselves in the endzone again after Cushing scored on a 40-yard touchdown pass from Moyer to Crooks and Austin Mages ripped off a 60-yard run for a Demons’ score.
After one half of play, the game was still tied 14-14. Cushing had two turnovers, both interceptions. Perkins-Tryon had not turned the ball over, but were unable to convert those turnovers into points.
Perkins-Tryon marched down the field on their first drive of the second half, allowing Mages to punch in a 3-yard touchdown.
Cushing answered immediately as Moyer threw a 56-yard touchdown pass to a wide-open Camden Crooks down the sideline.
The Demons were on their way down the field on the next drive when Cushing defensive back Kirk Huseman intercepted a pass, giving the Tigers the ball just outside the 20 yard line, and the Tigers scored on a 26-yard pass to Harrison Wood, putting them on top 26-21.
In the fourth quarter, the Tigers scored another touchdown on a beautiful pass from Moyer to Keaton Crooks in the endzone, putting them up 32-21.
The Demons mounted their comeback effort and drove down the field, scoring a touchdown as Mages punched it in from two yards out to get his team within one score.
With 6:28 left, the Tigers got the ball back and ran as much time off of the clock as they could before punting the ball back to the Demons with 2:20 left in the game.
Mages lead the charge as he notched run after run until finally throwing a 26-yard touchdown pass to Colby Anderson with 49 seconds left in the game to put the Demons up 35-28.
On the first play of a potential comeback drive for the Tigers, Gannon McCutchen intercepted a pass for the Demons, sealing their win.
Coach Williams was proud of his team for their game-winning heroics late in the game.
“We practice that every day,” Williams said. “We have a two-minute offense, we work on it every day, and we practice with the defense on it too. It wasn’t by chance that we methodically drove (the ball) down the field, we practice it, we work it, and it paid off.
The Demons are now off to a 2-0 start to the season and will play at McCloud on Friday at 7 p.m. The Tigers fall to 0-2 and play at Berryhill on the same day.