NOBLE, Ok. - So close, yet so far away.
The Durant Lions (1-8) were within two points of Noble Bears (5-4) at half time, 14-12. However, the Lions could not capitalize on some of Noble’s miscues and faded in the second half, losing 30-12.
The Lions offense struggled Friday night, but not in the first quarter.
After the Lions punted on it’s first possession, Noble fumbled a snap and Durant recovered. The Lions pull the halfback pass of the hat and scored within 10 seconds to grab an early led. Dakota Diessner was on the right side of the field when he connected with Brandon Maynard in the endzone for a 30-yard touchdown pass. Durant led 6-0 after a missed extra point.
Noble quickly answered back with a seven minute 12-play drive that ended with a 3-yard rushing touchdown. Noble led 7-6 with 3:49 left in the first quarter.
Durant began its next scoring drive at its own 24-yard line and in just under a minute, the Lions would score again.
On the seventh play in the drive, the Lions faced 3rd down-and-11. Zac Cater, 13-for-29 with 1 TD and 2 INT’s, stepped back into pocket and found Dakota Green on a short underneath pass and Green raced in for a 47-yard touchdown and gave the Lions it’s last lead of the night, 12-7.
Durant began the second quarter with the ball, but it’s drive stalled at Noble’s 42-yard line and had to punt. The punt took a Lion bounce and stop on Noble’s 12-yard line. Two plays later, Noble drove to it’s own 23-yard line when a bad snap was recovered by Durant’s Will Engle at Noble’s 4-yard line.
Durant had third down troubles Friday night, converting only 3-of-11.
Durant third down woes showed its ugly head when the Lions couldn’t capitalize on the scoring opportunity after the fumble recovery. On 3rd down-and-goal at the Bears’ 1-yard, the Lions suffered a false start penalty and backed up the Lions to the 6-yard line. On 3rd-and-six the Lions where stopped and had to attempt a field goal, but the FG was wide right and Noble dodge a bullet. The Lions still led 12-7.
Nine minutes and 10-plays later the Bears were at the Lions 1-yard line facing third down and would capture the lead with a rushing TD, 14-12. And Bears never looked back, as they tore off 16 unanswered points and rolled to a 30-12 win.
Rushing: The Lions only netted 5 yards rushing. They gained 59 yards, but lost 54 yards. Diessner rushed for 5 yards on four carries. Cater had 42 yards on 12 carries, but sacked 4 times for negeative 35 yards. Receiving: Diessner had 5 catches for 43 yards, Hunter Stephens had 3 catches for 41 yards. Engle had 3 catches for 33 yards. Green had 1 catch for 53 yards, 1 TD and Maynard had 1 catch for 30 yards and 1 TD. Defense: John Lozano had 5 solo tackles with 10 ast. for a total of 10 tackles. Engle had 3 solo tackles and 2 fumble recoveries. Tyler Brown had 4 tackles.