Perry What appeared to be a busted conversion kick really wasn't. It was a designed two-point play. And it worked.
Wide receiver Gavin Johnson's pass to Garrett Green proved decisive as Marysville stunned Perry-Lecompton, 22-21, in Class 4A bi-district football Tuesday night.
With a 4-5 record, Marysville made the 21â2-hour drive to Perry as a heavy underdog. The Kaws were 8-1 and a high seed.
"I don't think we overlooked them," P-L coach Mike Paramore said. "They were just a better team than we were tonight."
Marysville produced the decisive point with 6:23 remaining after narrowing the score to 21-20. Kicker Nic Stoll lined up for the conversion kick as holder Brian Price knelt on one knee, ready to take the snap.
But the snap crawled along the ground, and Price picked up in an apparent panic.
Just before he was tackled, however, Price pitched the ball back to wide receiver Johnson, who rolled to the right and tossed to two-point pass to Green in the back of the end zone.
On the surface, the 'Dogs had taken the lead on a improvisational play. Not so.
"It was a called fake," Marysville coach Brad Hammett said. "We run that play every so often. I thought we had the momentum, and we still had time to come back if we didn't make it."
Perry-Lecompton also had time to stage a comeback, but the Kaws stalled on their ensuing series, and Dillon Harrell punted to Price, the 'Dogs' deep back.
Harrell's punt bounced off the top of Price's helmet high into the air.
"My heart did stop then, I think," Hammett said.
For a moment, it appeared Perry's Caleb Denton had recovered the muff at the Marysville four, but somehow Price was able to reclaim the ball.
"It was a scramble," Paramore recalled. "It could have turned the game around, but we didn't come up with the ball."
Nevertheless, the 'Dogs were pinned back on their own four-yard line and, with 4:13 remaining, needed to make a couple of first downs to prevent the Kaws from earning one more shot.
And that's exactly what they did. Perry-Lecompton never touched the ball again, even though Paramore used all three of his timeouts in an effort to stop the clock.
The key play was a 27-yard pass from Ben Malotte to Green when the 'Dogs were facing a third-and-six from their own eight.
"We couldn't get stops," Paramore said. "We've been good defensively, but we were struggling."
Neither team committed a turnover, but the Kaws were hit with 70 yards in penalties. One was an offensive-pass-interference call against wide receiver Joel Gantz after he had caught an apparent 28-yard touchdown pass seconds before halftime.
"Those things bite you," Paramore said. "Turnovers and penalties kill you, and they did."
Marysville (5-5) will play host to Baldwin on Saturday night.
Perry-Lecompton finished with an 8-2 record.
"They outplayed us tonight," Paramore said. "It's a tough thing to take, especially for the seniors, but I'm proud of our kids."