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Tigers drop heartbreaker to ACA

The Luverne Tigers played one of their better games last Friday night only to see it slip away in the last 2 minutes of play.

The Tigers won the toss and deferred to the second half. Alabama Christian returned the ball out to their 31 yard line on the starting kick off. On the first play from scrimmage, QB Clint Mitchell dropped to pass as he tried to hit Brandon Johnson, but Tiger DB Darren Foster stepped in front of him and picked off the pass. He returned it 7 yards to the AC 22 yard line.

But on the first play for the Tigers, they returned the favor as they fumbled the ball back to ACA on their 19 yard line. From this point to the last few minutes of the first quarter, both defenses controlled the game.

Late in the first quarter, the Eagles mounted a 59-yard, 8-play drive that led to their first score of the night, it came on a 9-yard run by Courtney Moss. Jordan Nickolson came on to kick the extra point and with 3:52 left in the first quarter, the Eagles held a 7-point lead.

The Tigers got on the board next after a 51 yard, 9 play drive. The TD came on a 16-yard pass from Monterio May to Matthew Sipper. The PAT was missed and with 44 seconds left in the first quarter, the Tigers had cut the Eagles’ lead to 1 point.

But the Eagles wasted no time in getting the score back; it only took 2 plays. The TD came on a 69 yard run by Moss as time expired in the first stanza. Nickolson again split the uprights for a 14 to 6 ACA lead. The Eagles started off the second quarter where they left off in the first. They drove 58 yards in three plays for their third TD of the night. It came on a 7 yard run by Myles Mays. Nickolson again kick the PAT, and with 9: 33 left in the second quarter, the Tigers were down 21 to 6.

The Tigers scored their second TD of the night with 1:13 left in the half. The touchdown came after a 3 play, 36 yard drive. It came on a 15 yard pass from May to Evan Richardson, who made a great grab in traffic for the score. Again the PAT was missed, but with 1:13 left in the half, the Tigers had trimmed 6 more points off the Eagle lead. The half ended with the Tigers trailing 21 to 12.

The second half started with the Tigers receiving the kick, and they returned it out to their 41 yard line. From here they mounted a 13 play drive that lasted 7 minutes and 4 seconds. The drive ended with Chad Free sliding off left end on a 5 yard run. This time Adam Foster came on and split the uprights for the PAT, and with 3:56 left in the third quarter, the Tigers had cut the deficient down to 2 points. The Tiger defense stiffened in the third quarter and allowed the Eagles 4 plays and only 6 yards of offense. The tiger’s final score of the night came after a 6 play, 63 yard drive. The td came on a 25 yard run by Chad Free with 11: 06 left in the game. The pass for the point after was missed, but the tigers had fought back from 15 points down to take the lead 25 to 21. The eagles wasted no time in regaining the lead as they marched 72 yards in 12 plays to regain the lead. The score came on a fourth and 14 as Qb Clint Mitchell hit wide out Jordan Creel with the game winning td toss. Jordan Nickolson again was true on the pat and with 2: 13 left in the game the eagles had regained the lead 28 to 25. And ladies and gentlemen that’s how it ended. Well, we missed 3 pats and lost by 3 points.

The tigers were lead on offence by Chad Free with 103 yards on the ground in 22 totes. Micah Wallace had 35 yards on 9 carries. The tigers were lead on defense by Lonnie freeman and A. J. Hall with 5 tackles each. Adam Foster and Darren foster each had an interception. The tigers had 14 first downs and the eagles had 12. The tigers massed 271 yards of total offence while the eagles gained 304 total yards. The tigers travel to Mobile this Friday night to play Cottage Hill in an important region game. Kick off is 7 pm.