NORFOLK — Robby Mayberry of Oakland-Craig made the game-saving tackle on a last-second hook-and-ladder play to preserve a 20-17 win for the Red squad in the Northeast Nebraska All-Star Football Classic.
The White team jumped out to the first lead of the game on a 27-yard field goal by Norfolk’s Connor Clayton with about six minutes left in the first quarter.
Ron Beacom’s squad added to its lead in the second quarter. Battle Creek’s Ty Heimes found GACC’s Jadyn Smeal down the sideline for a 72-yard touchdown to make it 10-0.
The White team’s defense dominated in the first half. Riverside’s Ty Martinsen intercepted a Red pass and took it in for a score one minute before halftime to build a 17-0 lead.
The third quarter started in White’s favor. Clayton smacked a 30-yard field goal to earn a 20-point lead.
Then, the Red team started its comeback. Pierce’s Devan Roth nailed a 27-yard field goal with 11 minutes left to put Red on the board.
The Red squad got the ball back because of the game’s 17-point rule. After a lengthy drive, Ponca’s Evan Anderson punched it in from five yards out to make it a 10-point game.
After getting a stop, the Red team again drove down the field. Roth hit an event-record 46-yard field goal to make it a seven-point game with five seconds left.
Red recovered an onside kick with two seconds left. Anderson completed a pass to Hartington Cedar Catholic’s Matthew Becker who pitched it to Randolph’s Noah Scott. Mayberry tackled him at the five yard-line to end the game.
It was a record-setting game. The White team set a record with three interceptions. Scott set event records in rushing yards (154) and carries (33). Martinsen’s 51-yard pick six was the longest interception return in event history. Clayton and Roth each hit two field goals to set the event record. Roth’s 46 yarder was the longest ever.
The White team is 4-3 against the Red team in the event’s history.