OAKLAND — Tri-County had come back from two touchdowns down last Friday against Argenta-Oreana, only to come up short. Friday on Oakland's Homecoming, the team trailed by 13 points, 33-20, after three quarters. But the Titans scored 14 points in the final 10:05 for a thrilling 34-33 victory over Cumberland.
The win improved the Titans to 3-3 overall and 2-2 in the Lincoln Prairie Conference, while Cumberland, which was trying to become playoff eligible, fell to 4-2 overall and 3-1 in the LPC.
Tri-County's game-winning drive started at its own 20 with 5:33 left in the game and took 12 plays with quarterback Mitch Pollock scoring on an eight-yard run. The game-winning extra point was kicked by Filippo Bosio with 1:04 left.
Kenzal Lloyd intercepted the first pass by Cumberland to seal the victory.
The Pirates were coming off a 28-26 win over Arcola, which was ranked No. 9 in Class 1A at the time. In the same week, Tri-County nearly knocked off last year's Class 1A semifinalist, Argenta-Oreana, falling 33-29.
The Titans' first touchdown of the fourth was aided by 35 yards in pentalties. Lloyd caught an 18-yard pass from Pollock for the touchdown.
In the first half Tri-County took advantage of a Cumberland fumble on their second play from scrimmage scoring on a 21-yard pass from Mitch Pollock to Brandon Royer two plays after Pollock recovered an errant pitch on the Pirate 22. Filippo Bosio made the extra point for a 13-0 lead with 4:43 left in the first.
There were no punts in the first half as both teams had one fumble and three touchdowns. The extra points wee the difference in the first half as the Titans led 20-18.
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Cumberland's first drive went 81 yards in seven plays with Blayne Donsbach picking up a gain of 39 yards. Three plays later he scored on a one-yard run. The extra point was wide.
Tri-County began the game and took the ball 54 yards in 10 plays converting a fourth and two from the Pirate 46 on a four-yard run by Lane Bisby. The touchdown also occurred on a fourth and two from the Cumberland 21 when Daniel Drake scored on a 21-yard run down the Titans sideline.
After the final touchdown of the first half, a 14-yard pass to Wyatt Brant for Cumberland with 16 seconds left the Pirates went for the two-point conversion and it was stopped by the Titans.
Three keys of the game
1) Cumberland helped Tri-County in the second half with seven penalties for 80 yards, including one that put the ball on the eight after a personal foul penalty.
2) The Pirates had all but 19 yards on the ground behind Blayne Donsbach and Wyatt Brant. Donsbach scored three touchdowns in the game.
3) Tri-County's kicker, a foreign exchange student, Fillipppo Bosio made the final point interesting as it hit the right up-right before bouncing over. Earlier he missed on that bounced off the right up right.
Up next: Cumberland (record) hosts Villa Grove/Heritage, while Tri-County (record) will travel to Arcola