C-SD falls to Easton, 40-34 in double overtime

EASTON – In the final regular-season game of the 2019 season, Cambridge-South Dorchester (1A) went to Easton (2A) to challenge their Talbot County rivals. The Vikings brought a record of 7-1 with them, while the Warriors came in at 5-3.

Easton got the opening kick, and drove downfield with a mix of passes and runs. At first and goal from the 3, the Warriors took it to the 2.

An incomplete pass from Ryan O’Connor made it third down, but defensive pressure resulted in a tackle behind the line of scrimmage and it was time for a field goal attempt – unsuccessful at the 5:44 mark of the first quarter.

On the Vikings’ following drive, the C-SD boys moved the ball effectively, but a personal foul and a high snap set them back, before a Vikings fumble recovered by the Warriors.

What next? An unsportsmanlike call against Easton. All that in the first quarter, so emotions were running high before the game was old.

As the second quarter began, Easton was first and goal at the 10. After a 5-yard completion, Jarin Winters snagged a 5-yard catch for the game’s first score. A missed extra point made it 6-0 Easton.

C-SD struck back right away, as Malik Ennals fielded the kickoff on a dead run, and went 75 yards for a score. James Frazier’s extra point was good, and the Vikings took a 7-6 lead with about 10:30 to go in the second quarter.

A some offensive sputtering in a drive from each team, the Vikings recovered an Easton fumble at the Warriors’ 42 yard line, with about 5 minutes left in the first half. It went for naught, though, and led only to a punt.

With under a minute to go in the half, O’Connor threw 29 yards into the end zone, where Shawn Warner scored for the Warriors. A two-point attempt followed, no good, and the score at halftime was 12-7.

C-SD took over with 13 seconds left in the second quarter. On their second play, Khalik Beasley took the ball 51 yards, untouched for a score. Another Frazier extra point made it a 14-12 advantage at the half.

Strong running by Cam Lake opened the Vikings’ first possession of the third quarter. Still, the drive ended with a punt by Malik Ennals.

Throughout the game, the players had to contend with a field surprisingly soggy, considering how little rain had fallen recently. The Vikings’ defense stayed speedy regardless, as they put enough pressure on Warrior QB O’Connor to keep him from his usually effective vertical game.

Beasley took his second trip into the end zone on first and goal to go from the 2. After a successful extra point, it was 21-12 in favor of the visitors.

By the third quarter, C-SD’s offense was maintaining possession of the ball. That took it out of the hands of Easton’s O’Connor, and helped the Vikings keep the momentum going their way.

That momentum shifted early in the fourth quarter, when Jarin Winters took it in from the 2-yard line, to make it 21-19 after the extra point.

Vikings’ QB John Henry heaved a bomb from midfield to Logan Middleton, for first down at the Easton 16, with 9:19 left in the game. Then from 11 yards out, Beasley sped around the left end and went in for his third TD.

The extra point was no good, leaving the score at 27-19 with just over 8 minutes to go as Easton took over. There was more slipping and sliding on the muddy field as the Warriors’ offense tried to make headway – they couldn’t, and punted with 6:40 to go in the game.

C-SD’s hard-nosed style of football, with plenty of running eating up yardage and the clock, helped to seal the deal.

With 1:53 left in the game, C-SD turned the ball over on downs. Easton took over at their own 9.

The Warriors moved the ball quickly downfield, getting it to the C-SD 39 at the 1:20 mark. Completed passes on the sidelines allowed the Easton ball carriers to step out of bounds and stop the clock.

With 41 seconds, Easton moved to the C-SD 5. Third and goal from the 2, 23 seconds left to go, and O’Connor kept the ball and ran in for a TD.

A two-point conversion followed to tie the game, 27-27, and send it to overtime.

Easton won the toss and chose to start on defense. In high school, the team on offense gets the ball on the opponents’ 10 yard line.

Dario Belizaire scored on the Vikings’ second carry. James Frazier’s extra point was good, and it was 34-27.

Easton then got the ball at C-SD’s 10. On third and goal, O’Connor was stopped trying to run it in, and the game came down to one play – if the Vikings could stop the Warriors, game over.

O’Connor threw for a touchdown, and it was 34-33, with the pressure all on kicker Brogan Stofa. The attempt was no good, and a flag was on the field after the Vikings were called for launching.

That gave the Warriors another chance, making it a 34-34 tie and sending the contest into second overtime. On another fourth-down play, Easton scored to bring it to 40-34, after missing the extra point.

Cambridge took over, and scored their own TD, but there was a penalty for holding on the other side of the field – with the flag thrown after the player scored – to negate it. It was third down from the 32, when Easton intercepted and ended the game, winning 40-34.

The Vikings will host the first game of the playoffs on Nov. 8. They are ranked number 2 in the state in 1A, after Dunbar.

Dave Ryan is editor of the Dorchester Banner. He can be reached at dryan@newszap.com.

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