The Woodgrove Wolverines earned football bragging rights in Purcellville for a second straight year following a thrilling 21-14 victory over host Loudoun Valley Nov. 2.
The rivalry, now in its third year, lived up to the hype with the outcome going right down to the wire. Woodgrove junior Josh Sweet’s 5-yard touchdown run, with 37 seconds left in regulation, proved to be the winning score.
“The offensive line did a great job on the stretch play,” Sweet said. “Coach Skinner told me to take it to the outside and my receivers did a great job staying with their men, and it was just wide-open. It was a great win for our team.”
Woodgrove (7-3) earned a postseason bid for the first time in program history. The Wolverines are seeded sixth in Region II Division 4 and will play at No. 3 seed Loudoun County Nov. 9.
Valley (4-6) is also playoff bound, gaining the final spot in Region II Division 3. The Vikings will travel to top seed Skyline in the first round.
The Wolverines and Vikings combined for 21 points in a little more than eight minutes to start their game. Neither squad would reach the end zone again until the fourth quarter.
“I really felt our kids on defense did a great job keeping us in the game,” Wolverine coach Mike Skinner said. “The one thing we have talked about all year is we have to finish. Last week, we had Tuscarora beat and didn’t get the job done. Tonight, we did.”
Woodgrove was forced to play most of the game without senior starting quarterback Tucker Coil, who broke his leg late in the first quarter. Coil had two rushes for 30 yards at the time of his injury.
After Coil was taken away by ambulance, the Wolverines placed his helmet and rib protector on the end of the bench as a symbol of his importance to the team.
“He’s our captain, our leader and you saw the game he was having,” Skinner said. “He’s a difference maker.”
The game provided early drama as Woodgrove fumbled on its own 23-yard line on its opening drive. Valley took advantage with Brandon Grayson scoring the game’s first points on a 7-yard touchdown run.
On the ensuing kickoff, Woodgrove’s Atem Ntantang electrified the crowd going 100 yards for a score that started with some hesitancy.
“It’s a funny story,” Ntantang said. “I caught the ball and my foot was on the line. I looked at the ref, I thought he was going to call a touchback and he kept the play going. I just found a seam and took it downfield.”
Ntantang also scored in the first quarter on a 35-yard run to give the Wolverines a 14-7 lead.
The score remained that way until Sully Warner connected with Atticus Keane on a 51-yard touchdown pass that pulled the Vikings even at 14-14 with 9:43 left in the game.
Sweet finished with 163 yards on 26 carries. Andrew Cordani paced the Viking offense with 106 rushing yards on 26 attempts.
Woodgrove 21, Loudoun Valley 14
LV: Grayson 7 run (Peart kick) 8:31
W: Ntantang 100 kickoff return (kick failed) 8:51
W: Ntantang 35 run (Sweet run) 3:49
LV: Keane 51 pass from Warner (Peart kick) 9:43
W: Sweet 5 run (Warfel kick) 0:37
-Rushing: W - Sweet (26 for 163 yards, TD), Ntantang (5 for 40 yards, TD), Coil (2 for 30 yards); LV - Cordani (26 for 106 yards), Grayson (4 for 7 yards, TD)
-Passing: W - Koester (3 of 8 for 10 yards); LV - Warner (6 of 15 for 89 yards, TD)
-Receiving: W – Mellor (2 for 12 yards); LV - Keane (2 for 57 yards, TD)
Tuscarora 32, Heritage 6
Noah Reimers, Adrien Stinger and Mali Barker each rushed for touchdowns and Nick Azzarita tossed a pair of touchdown passes for Tuscarora.
Jordan Fisher also had a big game with seven receptions for 88 yards and two touchdowns. Reimers finished with 81 rushing yards.
Broad Run 40, Freedom 21
Brady Reitzel passed for 243 yards and three touchdowns and also rushed for 112 yards for Broad Run. Da’Qwan Earl and Dorian Jenkins each surpassed 100 receiving yards and combined for three scores. Corey Hilberath added 100 yards and two touchdowns on the ground.
Brendan Kammerdeiner led Freedom’s charge with 235 rushing yards and two touchdowns. Kammerdeiner finished the season with 1,047 rushing yards.
Potomac Falls 28, Dominion 17
Michael Fischetti connected with Kareen Watson for two passing touchdowns, and also found Wayna Allen for another score to help Potomac Falls complete the season with consecutive wins. Daniel McLean contributed a rushing score.
Dominion’s Donnie Gasser completed 20 of 45 attempts for 200 yards. His favorite targets were Chad Smith (80 yards and a touchdown) and Matt Valenzuela (95 yards). Garrett Robinson rushed for 40 yards and a touchdown.
Stone Bridge 47, Fairfax 28
Sterling Dailey rushed for 137 yards and four touchdowns as Stone Bridge capped an undefeated regular season. Rassaun Goldring added a 4-yard touchdown run and produced more than 100 yards of total offense.
Ryan Burns passed for 237 yards, including a 65-yard touchdown strike to Jimmy Higgins. Jake Kuzbel caught four passes for 56 yards.
-Carl Lukat contributed to this story
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