Tailback Isaiah Rodgers converted a third-and-9 on a surprising draw play, giving the Grizzlies a 17-14 win over archrival Sequoyah at Skip Pope Stadium.
Rodgers had been bottled up by a stingy Chiefs run defense for the entirety of the night, as he finished with only 33 yards on 10 carries.
Creekview’s inability to run the ball was just a sub-category of mistakes that plagued Terry Crowder’s team throughout the contest.
“It’s a consistent thing,” said Crowder, who earned his first victory in the northern subregion of 7AAAAA. “I feel like, offensively, nobody is really slowing us down. We’re just killing ourselves. I’m going to keep studying and see what we can do to prevent that.”
Creekview (3-2, 1-0) committed 12 penalties and had three costly turnovers. Without hindsight, quarterback Tyler Wilkie’s fourth-quarter interception at Sequoyah’s 3-yard line was the mistake that loomed largest.
Just one snap before, Wilkie had connected with receiver Chandler Wold, who was unsolvable to the tune of eight catches for 172 yards and two touchdowns, on a long pass play deep into Chiefs territory. But on the next play, Wilkie’s pass toward the front corner of the end zone found its way into the hands of Sequoyah’s Derrion Rakestraw.
Sequoyah (3-2, 0-1) did what it had managed to do for most of the game, which was control the football. The Chiefs marched all the way down to the Creekview 20-yard line, but could not move further, as timely mistakes plagued James Teter’s team as well.
“We had penalties and turnovers, and kept giving up third-and-longs. We kind of handcuffed ourselves,” the Sequoyah coach said.
The Chiefs controlled most of the game’s clock, thanks to Jake Garner. Garner carried 23 times for 172 yards, including a 21-yard run in the second quarter that came with him dragging a couple Creekview defenders. That gave the Chiefs a 14-7 lead.
It was Wold who gave Creekview the lead with just seconds left to play in the first half. Sequoyah seemed to be heading into halftime with a 14-10 lead after the defense held the Grizzlies to a field goal the possession before. But with less than a minute left into halftime, Adam Patterson fumbled the ball over to Creekview.
Wilkie capitalized with 18 seconds remaining, hitting Wold down the seam on a play that was virtually unstoppable for the Grizzlies’ attack.
“When I got this job and started watching the film of Chandler, he’s the perfect ‘H.’ You can’t draw up a better ‘H’ in our offense, as the little slot receiver,” Crowder said. “He’s a tremendous athlete, and a competitor, which is the big thing.”