Worth the wait: Patriots knock off Senators in dramatic fashion

Published 7:59 pm Monday, August 26, 2019

It took approximately 24 hours, but the Pike Liberal Arts Patriots started the season 1-0 with a thrilling 34-27 in double overtime.

The Patriots and Senators played much of the first quarter on Friday before lightning and rain forced a postponement until Saturday with the Patriots leading 3-0 after Scott Taylor Renfroe connected on a 20-yard field goal.

Chip Faircloth scored on the first play of the second overtime to give the Patriots a season-opening win.

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“It’s always good to win,” said head coach Gene Allen. “It’s tough to have to come home and then go back, but our kids responded well. We didn’t play really well. We watched film and we know we have a lot of things that we need to correct. They played hard and finished strong. We got more points than the other team and that is the key.”

The game was supposed to resume at 3 p.m. on Saturday, but more poor weather pushed the game a second time until 6 p.m.

“It could have been tough but we have a good group of seniors and some of them played by far their best game,” Allen said. “The kids played hard. The kids made mistakes, but it wasn’t due to lack of playing hard; they got after it.”

Sophomore quarterback Drew Nelson connected with senior receiver Davis Allen for a pair of touchdowns, including one for 93 yards.

Allen finished the game with six catches for 198 yards.

“Davis had by far his best game,” Allen said. “He did a great job running routes, catching the ball and getting yards after. He played well defensively, had a lot of big tackles for us. He had some big kick returns for us. He had a big night in all phases of the game.”

Nelson finished the game 11-25 with 284 passing yards.

“He was gone most of the summer playing baseball, but he came up here a lot and got a lot of extra work in,” Allen said. “He is going to get better and better as the year goes on. For the most part, he did a real nice job and we expect him to get better and better.”

The Patriots returned to the practice field this week to begin preparations for next week’s home opener against Crenshaw Christian. Academy.