All that came between the Charles Henderson Trojans and a win Friday night was a half-yard.
After mounting a miraculous fourth quarter comeback, the Trojans found themselves in a position to steal a victory away from region foe Tallassee at Veterans Memorial Stadium.
However, in the end, CHHS came up short, as the Tigers returned home with a 28-27 win.
A Corey Dennis one-yard touchdown run brought CHHS to within one point with under a minute remaining in the game and on the ensuing extra point attempt, the Tigers committed an encroachment penalty.
CHHS head coach Hugh Fountain sent his team back out to the field looking to get the win on the conversion
And while Dennis had been able to run all over the Tiger defense in the final quarter, Tallassee made the biggest stop of the night, holding the quarterback down, inches from the goal line.
“We had a chance to get the victory and we went for it,” Fountain said after the loss.
“Once we got the penalty, the first thing I thought was going for (the two-point conversion).
“This team isn’t afraid of anything. We are not scared about taking chances. We went for it and we didn’t get it,” the coach added.
While the Trojans may have owned the fourth quarter, Tallassee owned the first three.
The Tigers marched down the field for scores on two of its first three possessions.
THS quarterback Eric Cochran-Gill led the Tiger charge, scoring on a one-yard run and throwing for another score to put his team up 13-0.
It wasn’t until late in the second half when the Trojan offense awoke.
Starting at its own six-yard line, CHHS moved the ball down the field, thanks to Dennis and running back Ontonio Turner.
Dennis completed four of his five passes in the drive for 68 yards, including a 31-yard pass and catch with wide receiver Quintus Moss that led to a score, cutting the lead to just six at 13-7 heading into the half.
CHHS has a chance at more points during its second possession when it drove down the field to the THS four-yard line, but was turned away on a fourth down play.
The Tigers offense would not lay dormant as it entered the second half, thanks to another Gill led attack.
After a Darius Williams score put the Tigers up 19-7, Gill would lead his team down the field again, connecting with DiJon Paschal on a 28-yard touchdown pass to put his team up 28-7.
The Trojans would take over from there on out.
With less than eight minutes remaining in the game, Dennis took over, leading his team on three consecutive scoring drives, all of which ended with him finishing in the end zone, on two one-yard runs and a two yard run.
The quarterback’s last attempt at a score would fall short however.
“The thing is, we fought hard towards the end of the game, but Tallassee outplayed us up until (the fourth quarter),” Fountain said.
“We didn’t do a good job of executing at all through the first three quarters.
“But we got the stops we needed (in the fourth quarter) and did a good job of getting back into the game,” he added. “When the game was on the line, our kids responded.”
The Trojans finished with 316 total offensive yards, 267 of which came from Dennis, who finished with 167 yards through the air and 100 yards on the ground, and four touchdowns.
Tallassee finished with 279 yards, 156 of which came in the first half.
“We found the guys who are not going to give up, no matter what,” Fountain said.
“And a lot of credit goes to those guys and this team, but this is still a tough loss for us.”
CHHS will travel to B.T. Washington next Friday night.