In an ugly game filled to the brim with penalties and intense emotion, the Newberg High School football team lost 17-14 to McNary in overtime on Friday, Sept. 10, at Loran Douglas Field.
The Tigers (0-2) were unable to pick up their first win of the season but did welcome back a raucous, masked-up student section. The Celtics (2-0), though, ultimately prevailed.
"We had some things not go our way where we thought we could get some momentum back," NHS first-year head coach Jeremy Johnson said. "We had penalties that hurt us, and we had situations where we were in a spot to make a play but didn't."
The first quarter, for both teams, was filled with mistakes and stagnant offensive play. But McNary got the scoring started with one minute remaining in the first frame, reaching paydirt on a two-yard pass from Tyler Copeland to Gunner Smedema.
The Celtics led 7-0 after one.
Early in the second quarter, Newberg got on the scoreboard with a 17-yard pass from Levi Durrell to Sam Murphy, making it 7-7. Six elapsed minutes and myriad yellow flags later, and Newberg scored again on a four-yard run by Price Pothier.
At the half, the Tigers led the Celtics 14-7. They would not score again.
After a sloppy third quarter on both sides of the ball, McNary tied the game at 14-14 early in the fourth period on a 17-yard keeper by Copeland. Ten minutes and 13 seconds elapsed, and neither team scored, sending the contest to the Kansas plan.
Newberg got the ball first in overtime but shot itself in the foot with a trio of penalties, ultimately getting a deep field goal attempt blocked and failing to score at all despite starting — as is customary in OSAA overtime rules — on the opposing 25.
"Rhythm-wise, that hurts you," Johnson said of his team's costly penalties. "You just can't get a feel for things. And you're giving up field position."
When McNary got the ball, penalties seemed like they'd be the Celtics' undoing as well, but Logan Ready nailed a 43-yard field goal to give McNary the clutch victory. He was mobbed by his teammates in celebration as the dejected Tigers walked off in disbelief.
Newberg's next game also will be at home on Sept. 17 as the Tigers face 2-0 Sheldon.
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