WINCHESTER -- When two evenly matched football rivals get together, it's no surprise when the result comes down to a kick. Friday's game between James Wood and Millbrook did just that, several times in fact.
Chandler DeHaven's 27-yard field goal in overtime gave the visiting Colonels a 17-14, Northwestern District victory over the Pioneers. The field goal was a first for DeHaven, who normally handles the extra-point duties, but after kicker Peyton Hottel missed on two previous kicks, including one at the end of regulation, James Wood coach Mike Bolin decided to switch things up.
"We're fortunate to have two really good kickers," Bolin said. "We let Chandler have a chance and he split the uprights."
After winning the coin toss and electing to play defense first in overtime, James Wood caught a break when Millbrook kicker Derek Davis missed from 19 yards out. The Colonels (5-3, 2-1) then got their chance, starting from the 10.
After two straight running plays netted no gain, Bolin sent in DeHaven on third down.
"We did that in case we had a bad snap or something," Bolin said. "We could just fall on the ball and kick it on the next play."
After Hottel's miss at the end of regulation, Bolin went to DeHaven and told him to be ready.
"I was nervous," said the 5-foot-7-inch, 170-pound junior, who was carried off the field by his teammates. "I just tried to picture the ball going through. It's an awesome feeling. I'll remember it for the rest of my life."
Behind the work of what Bolin calls a patchwork offensive line, the Colonels amassed 292 yards on the ground. Fullback Cory Schrock and tailback Joel McGreevy led the way with 104 and 90 yards, respectively.
"Words don't explain the job the offensive line did tonight," Schrock said.
McGreevy gave Wood an early, 7-0 lead when he scored on a 15-yard run midway through the first quarter to cap an 11-play, 80-yard drive.
Millbrook senior running back Jordan Hartman added a 33-yard scoring run late in the second quarter to even the score, 7-7, at halftime. After a scoreless third quarter, the Colonels went back to dominating the line with their running attack. This time Schrock capped a 13-play drive with a 1-yard touchdown early in the fourth quarter.
The Pioneers responded immediately, largely behind the play of quarterback Curtis Daily, who finished 8 of 14 for 133 yards. With Hartman somewhat contained -- he finished with 105 yards on 22 carries -- the senior left-hander completed three passes for 57 yards on a 71-yard scoring drive. Hartman capped it with a 1-yard plunge to tie the game.
After the two teams traded punts, James Wood marched 55 yards in just under three minutes. However, the drive stalled and Hottel missed a 30-yard field goal wide left as time expired. While both teams struggled at times making kicks, neither committed a turnover and only combined for six penalties.
"That's what's so frustrating," said Millbrook coach Reed Prosser, whose Pioneers (4-4, 1-1) saw their three-game winning streak snapped. "Usually when you lose it's because you've made a number of mistakes. Tonight we didn't. Both teams played well and hard. They did a good job of controlling the ball and the clock. We need to do a better job of stopping the run, especially on first down."