DUBLIN, TX — As much as Houston Guy and the Wall Hawks lean on the running game it came down to a 20-yard pass for a touchdown from Gabe Haskins to Chase Rios in overtime that would keep the Wall Hawks season alive for one more week.
Wall head coach Houston Guy said the pass from Haskins to Rios felt like it lasted something like an eternity.
“We thought Chase would be open. We didn’t think the outside linebacker could run with Chase,” said Guy. “The ball hung I don’t know for how long in the air. It was a perfect throw and a perfect catch.”
Despite a number of starters on the bench this week due to injury the Hawks fought hard all night. Both teams would trade touchdowns in their opening drives. Junior quarterback Gabe Haskins would cap off the hawks opening possession finding Chase Rios for their first scoring connection thanks to a 25-yard throw to make it 7-7.
Following two stalled drives from both sides, the Hawks would find the end zone as Haskins would carry the mail himself for a 1-yard touchdown giving Wall the 14-7 lead with 2:11 to go in the opening frame.
From there it was a game of defense as Wall and Boyd battled each other to chew up clock time leading to a quick ending 45 minute first half.
It wasn’t until the fourth quarter with 9 minutes to go on 3rd and goal when Boyd QB1 Rendyn Lamance called his own number for the 6-yard touchdown to tie the game at 14.
Boyd would finally gain some momentum with 4:01 left in regulation when Lamance sprung loose for a run of 50 plus yards inside the Wall 10 yard line. With the Jackets staring down their first lead of the game since the opening possession Wall junior defensive lineman Austin Alwine made a play in the backfield to bring down Lamance to shift the momentum back in favor of the Hawks.
Boyd would eventually line up to attempt a 27-yard field goal that would give them the lead but the kick would go wide left ending any threat of a potential opening-round upset of the Wall Hawks at least in 4 quarters of play.
Wall would go on to kill the clock to end regulation time and send the Class 3A Division I Bi-District showdown into overtime.
In the overtime period, Wall would win the coin toss and elect to send out the defense first. The closest Boyd would get would be the 16-yard line. Due to penalties, their fate would come down to 4th and 17 only for a pass to be overthrown in the end zone.
With the game now in the hands of junior QB1 Gabe Haskins, the Hawks would only need three plays to clinch the win. On 1st and 10 from the 20-yard line, Haskins dropped back to put a pass right on the money to Chase Rios for the game-winning 20-yard touchdown sealing the Hawks 20-14 overtime win over Boyd.
According to Haskins the pass just felt right. “As soon as I saw Chase I knew it was going to be good,” said Haskins. “I had my faith in Chase and I knew he was going to catch it.”
Wall now moves on to the Area Round of the Class 3A Division I Playoffs to face the Bushland Falcons.