Monday, October 29, 2007

See It To Believe It

Mississippi Miracle! Tigers Stun Majors on Incredible Final Play

Jackson, Mississippi - Trinity's football team scored on the final play of the game to beat Millsaps 28-24 on Saturday afternoon, but it was the way in which it scored that was truly amazing.

After failing on a two-point conversion that would have tied the game at 24-24 with just over two minutes left in the game, and failing to recover the ensuing onside kick, it looked like Millsaps would beat Trinity for the second straight season. That win would have also clinched the SCAC Championship and automatic bid to the NCAA playoffs for the Majors, but it was not to be.

Out of timeouts, Trinity was unable to stop the clock on the first three plays of the final possession for Millsaps, and with eight seconds left, the Majors called for timeout. Hoping to run out the clock and end the game, Millsaps ran a play on fourth down, but two seconds still remained after the change of possession.

The Tigers completed a pass over the middle, then lateraled the ball 15 times on its way to an improbable, unbelievable, shocking game-winning touchdown by wide receiver Riley Curry. Curry actually touched the ball four times during the play, and on the fourth, he scampered into the end zone.

It was the second touchdown of the game for Curry, who caught the 13-yard pass from Blake Barmore that cut the lead to two in the fourth quarter. Curry finished with nine receptions for 115 yards. Chris Coleman had his second straight 100-yard day, totaling 119 yards on eight catches for the Tigers.

In a game that was expected to be a battle of two of the nation's top quarterbacks, Barmore and Millsaps signal-caller Juan Joseph were overshadowed by the play of the defenses. Barmore did finish with 339 yards and two scores on 27-43 passing, but he threw a pair of interceptions. Joseph was 24-45 for 227 yards and three touchdowns, but threw three picks and fumbled once.

Both defenses forced four turnovers in the game, and Trinity's defense kept Millsaps from scoring on four of its seven red zone opportunities. Dylan Nealous led Trinity with 10 tackles in the game, picking up two for a loss, and recovering Joseph's fumble. Safeties Brian Marynowitz and Lee Patterson each had interceptions, as did defensive lineman Ryan Johnson on a screen pass by Joseph.

Trinity also got its running game going in this game, thanks in large part to a 121-yard effort from sophomore Chris Baer. Baer carried the ball 20 times for that total, scoring the team's first touchdown of the night in the first quarter.

With the win, combined with Rhodes losing 27-0 at Centre today, Trinity now controls its own destiny for the SCAC title and a trip to the NCAA playoffs. In order to make that postseason appearance, the team must still defeat Centre at home next week, then win at Austin College on November 10.

Click here to see the reaction of Trinity's coach.

Related - Millsaps Football: 'Mississippi Miracle' had Jackson voice

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