Eagles’ season ended by Bulldogs

Published 3:00 am Saturday, November 8, 2014

By Sean Holohan

Friday night was a game of almosts for Goshen.

Nearly recovered onside kicks, trick plays wiped out by penalties and a costly muffed kickoff all plagued Goshen in their 34-21 loss to Geneva County Friday night in the first round of the 2A state playoffs.

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“That is not how we’ve played this year,” Goshen head coach Bart Snyder said. “We did not finish in Goshen style.”

Gohen almost recovered the game’s opening kickoff after a Daniel Macias pooch kick was fumbled by Geneva County. But the Bulldogs were able to jump on the loose ball and retain possession.

From there, the Bulldogs sprinted out to an early two-score lead behind a 73-yard run by running back Ulysses Green and a 77-yard rush by running back Nicholas Carroll to go up 14-0 early in the second quarter.

But the early deficit didn’t phase the Eagles. On the ensuing drive, quarterback Kendrez White took matters into his own hands — literally — as he led the Goshen offense down the field, highlighted by a big 23-yard run into Geneva County territory. White capped the drive with a 14-yard TD run to cut the deficit to seven.

After a quick Geneva County punt, White and the Goshen offense went to work again.

After an Elijah Smith 36-yard run and a 14-yard run by Terrianno Griffin to put the Eagles at the Bulldog 20 yard line, White scored again, this time running the ball in from 20 yards out to tie the game at 14 just before half.

“We battled back right there in the first half,” Snyder said. “We drove the ball down the field twice and looked real good.”

Coming out of halftime Friday night with momentum clearly on their side, it looked like a second round playoff game was in the near future for Goshen.

But the Eagles just couldn’t seem to get out of their own way in the second half.

On the opening kick of the third quarter, Goshen attempted a reverse on the return, but fumbled the ball, pinning themselves at their own 12 yard line. Three plays later, they punted to Geneva County running back Lavaugn Williams who was able to shake a few Goshen tackles on his way into the end zone, putting the Bulldogs back up by seven.

Goshen responded with a Zachery Alford TD reception, which knotted the game again at 21 all.

But the Eagles relinquished momentum right back to Geneva County just as soon as they grabbed it.

After a Geneva County score and missed extra point early in the fourth quarter to put the Bulldogs up six, Goshen was in position to drive down the field and take the lead.

But on the ensuing kickoff, an out of position Goshen return man wasn’t able to field the ball in time and Geneva County pounced on it, regaining possession in Goshen territory just seconds after scoring.

“You just can’t give a team like that opportunities,” Snyder said. “My hat is off to them.”

Four minutes later, Bulldog quarterback Skyler Pensyl iced the game with an eight-yard TD run, extending the Bulldogs’ lead to 34-21.

Despite their costly mistakes in the game, Goshen was only penalized once for five yards.

White finished the game with 97 yards and two touchdowns on the ground and 67 yards and a TD through the air.