HOUTZDALE - In the last minute of the game on Friday night, it had looked as if the outcome was sealed with the Williamsburg football team up by six points. Then, a football coach's worst nightmare happened.
The Blue Pirates fumbled at midfield and the ball went 20 yards downfield into Moshannon Valley territory. Fortunately for Williamsburg, a Blue Pirate receiver sprinted downfield and recovered the fumble to seal the deal as they held off the Black Knights, 27-21, on senior night at the Moshannon Valley Athletic Complex.
''We told them to have two hands on the football and protect it,'' Williamsburg coach Bob Hearn said. ''Finally for once, a bounce went our way.''
''We were playing so unemotionally. We played with a lack of heart,'' Moshannon Valley coach Michael Keith said. ''You can't wait until the last three minutes of a football game to get excited. But a credit to Williamsburg, they played well. They played with emotion. We did not, so they deserve to win this game and we deserved to lose.''
Moshannon Valley fell to 4-4.
Late in the first quarter, Black Knight quarterback Tanner Dipko reached the 1,000-yard passing milestone for the season on a 27-yard completion to Justin Kitko.
Dipko joined J.R. Baughman, Keith's teammate, as the only two Moshannon Valley quarterbacks to pass for 1,000 yards.
''That was the only bright spot of the night,'' said Keith. ''He's a good kid. He's hit some rough patches as of late, but he settled down tonight. He does a good job of running our offense.''
Jake Ludwig opened the scoring with a 5-yard touchdown up the gut. It was the only Black Knight touchdown until 14 seconds left in the half when Dipko found James Stodart to tie the game.
Williamsburg (2-6) cracked the scoring column via the big play.
At their own 8-yard line, Pirate quarterback Austin McMonagle hit Cody Bookhammer on a deep ball down the sideline. Bookhammer caught the ball against a Mo Valley cornerback's pads and broke loose, juking and jiving a few Mo Valley defenders on his way to the 92-yard touchdown.
''There was something we've been lacking all year, and that was the big play,'' said Hearn. ''Cody made the big play for us.
''I thought our kids came out tonight and gave a heck of an effort. At the beginning of the game, they played hard. They eliminated the big mistakes. It was an overall great team effort.''
McMonagle also found Quinton Snyder in the last minute of the half on a 29-yard touchdown.
Then, the Pirates turned to Jed Dishong, who ran with a purpose in the second half. Dishong ran for a 19-yard touchdown in the third quarter and a 10-yarder in the fourth quarter to put Williamsburg up 27-13.
Dishong finished the game with 18 carries for 139 yards.
''He was keeping his shoulders down and running hard,'' Hearn said. ''The guys blocked up front. They just did a tremendous job.''
Score By Quarters
Williamsburg0 13 6 8 - 27
Moshannon Valley7 6 0 8 - 21
MV-Ludwig 5 run, (Stodart kick), 5:29.
W-C. Bookhammer 92 pass from McMonagle, (Snyder kick), 11:39.
W-Snyder 29 pass from McMonagle, (kick failed), :50.
MV-Stodart 9 pass from Dipko, (run failed), :14.
W-Dishong 19 run, (kick failed), 7:51.
W-Dishong 10 run, (C. Bookhammer pass from McMonagle), 11:08.
MV-Kitko 22 pass from Dipko, (Kitko pass from Dipko), 3:37.
Rushing: Williamsburg-Dishong 18-139, Biddle 5-41, Shanholtz 7-26, C. Morrissey 3-6, TEAM 1-(-1), McMonagle 6-(-7), C. Bookhammer 2-(-14). Moshannon Valley-Campbell 17-35, Dipko 8-27, Ludwig 3-11, Kitko 1-5.
Passing: Williamsburg-McMonagle 7-16-1-196. Moshannon Valley-Dipko 17-31-1-224
Receiving: Williamsburg-C. Bookhammer 1-92, C. Morrissey 2-51, Snyder 3-48, Biddle 1-5. Moshannon Valley-Ludwig 7-85, Kitko 5-73, Sherkel 4-57, Stodart 1-9.
Interceptions: Williamsburg-C. Morrissey. Moshannon Valley-Kitko.