Chapin played a nearly flawless game against Seneca in its first round playoff game, but it wasn’t enough as the Eagles fell to the Bobcats 40-37 in overtime Friday night.
“Our boys could have tucked their tails,” Chapin coach Jason Gentry said. “They were down early, and I’m proud of the way our guys hung in there.”
The Bobcats came roaring out of the gate on their first possession, scoring on just two plays; A 62-yard run by Braxton Gambrell and a 17-yard scoring run by Andre’ Wright. It didn’t take long for the Eagles to match the score, as quarterback Logan Bailey scampered around the end for a 3-yard run. However, the extra point was blocked, keeping Seneca in the lead, 7-6.
In the second quarter, Gambrell scored his second of three rushing touchdowns, extending the Bobcats’ lead to 20-6.
Chapin’s next drive was aided on a fourth-and-1 from around midfield with an offsides penalty on the visitors. The penalty extended the drive, allowing Bailey to march his team down the field and again find pay dirt on a 4-yard run, making it 20-13 heading into the half.
The second half was when the game busted open, as the big plays came in bunches.
Chapin’s Noah Schelbe forced an interception on a third-down play mid-third quarter, prompting a thunderous road from the crowd, but the play was negated by a penalty. It seemed to be the momentum boost Chapin would need, however, as the Eagles eventually forced a punt and scored on the succeeding possession, putting them back within a score.
The Eagles would need one play on their next possession, when Bailey found Schelbe for a 64-yard pass down the sideline, giving them a 27-26 lead with 11:47 left.
As was the norm for the game, Seneca answered the score with a long drive that culminated in a Gambrell score. The Bobcats went for two, putting them up by seven.
Chapin was down to its final drive with about five minutes left.
Fortunately for the Eagles, Bailey found the end zone again for his third rushing touchdown on a 17-yard run up the middle on a quarterback draw, forcing the game into overtime.
After being stonewalled on three consecutive plays, the Eagles opted for a 32-yard field goal by kicker Smith Dawsey. With their backs against the wall, Seneca found a way to pull out the victory.
From the 10-yard line, Turner rolled to his right and saw no one open, so he decided to peel back to the opposite side of the field, where he found a wide-open Daquan Mackey for the game-winner.
After the game, Seneca coach Bradley Martin was complimentary of the Eagles.
“They probably made more plays than us,” Martin said. “They’re a great team and they forced us to make a lot of mistakes, but I’m so proud of our guys for pulling it out. I can’t say enough about the way our guys fought tonight.”
Chapin’s season ends at 7-4, while Seneca will face South Pointe next week.
SN – Andre’ Wright 17 run (Jess Smith kick) 9:32
CH – Logan Bailey 3 run (kick blocked) 7:45
SN – Braxton Gambrell 2 run (Smith kick) 2:30
SN – Gambrell 26 run (kick blocked) 5:33
CH – Bailey 4 run (Smith Dawsey kick) 2:49
SN – Elijah Turner 19 run (missed kick) 9:06
CH – Will Register 17 yard pass from Bailey (Dawsey kick) 2:53
CH – Noah Schelbe 64 yard pass from Bailey (Dawsey kick) 11:47
SN – Gambrell 4 run (2 pt. conv.) 7:29
CH – Bailey 31 run (Dawsey kick) 3:58
CH – Dawsey 32 kick
SN – Mackey 10 pass from Turner