Mt’neers climb past ‘Cats
In back-and-forth game, Mt. Vernon scores winner with 12 seconds left
MT. VERNON — It came down to the final 12 seconds of play in Mt. Vernon Friday to decide the season opener between the Mountaineers and Cassville, and the home team came out on top.
Cassville started the game ahead, then Mt. Vernon took a 13-7 lead. The Wildcats tied up the score with 2:12 to play, but the Mountaineers refused to lose.
A 38-yard bomb down the middle connected for Mt. Vernon with only 12 seconds left to secure the win.
Cassville started the game with control, taking the opening drive 82 yards to punch in a 1-yard rush by Jericho Farris.
Senior quarterback Hayden Sink, returning to Cassville after a stint in Bentonville (Ark.), was stellar on the drive. He converted a third-and-short rush and completed a third-and-long pass to keep the drive going.
Then, on fourth-and-3 from the 11, he kept an option and sliced up the center for 10 yards to set up the score.
Cassville continued its control over the next defensive stand, forcing a punt. The Wildcats then drive to the 23 but hooked the field goal left.
In the second quarter, Mt. Vernon found its offense, gaining big on a swing pass, then connecting a crossing route underneath for a 16-yard touchdown pass to tie the game.
Cassville drove into the red zone but failed a fourth-and-3 conversion to go into the locker room 7-7.
The Mountaineers started the second half hot, driving 80 yards and hitting a 15-yard pass for the 13-7 lead.
Late in the fourth quarter, Farris wouldn’t let Cassville trail. After Sink went out with an injury and junior Cutter Hicks began taking snaps, Farris took a handful of handoffs and drove the Wildcats to a 1-yard score. A failed PAT kept the score at 13-13.
Cassville returns home on Friday, hosting Marshfield at 7 p.m.