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NW Region, Division 5 Football: Key conversion carries Wildcats
HAMILTON’S CATCH ON 3RD-AND-LONG PLAY SEALS MOUNTAIN VIEW VICTORY
BY JIM SWING
WOODBRIDGE—Mountain View needed a third-down conversion—something that had been hard to come by—to seal a win and advance deeper into the postseason.
The Wildcats’ track record on third down—as far as this evening had gone—was atrocious.
They had converted just 3 of 12 third downs, but needed one more in order to run out the clock and salvage a one-point victory.
On third-and-20, quarterback Elijah Burress heaved a pass down the right sideline to his favorite target—the guy who had gotten Mountain View to this point.
DaeSean Hamilton, the Wildcats’ do-it-all receiver, leaped into the air and hauled in a 30-yard throw to seal a 14–13 win over Potomac in the Northwest Region quarterfinals.
“I didn’t know he would come up with it,” Burress said. “But he made a big play at the end.”
In a sense, Hamilton was the reason the game was that tight in the first place.
In the midst of a defensive first-quarter battle, Hamilton made two touchdown-saving tackles on back-to-back runs of 20 and 41 yards by the Panthers. The drive, which ended at the Wildcats’ 11-yard line, resulted in a missed field goal and kept the game scoreless in the first quarter.
Midway through the second quarter, Panthers quarterback Lorenzo Jacobs fumbled a snap, which was recovered by Mountain View’s Quentin Richardson on Potomac’s 12-yard line.
Just two plays later, Burress hit receiver Quinton Gray with a 12-yard touchdown pass to take the lead.
The Panthers evened the score more than three minutes later with a 7-yard touchdown run by Torrey Dixon.
On the next possession, Burress capped off a masterful 3:03 drive at the end of the half with a screen pass to Gordon Collins that went 20 yards for a touchdown.
Potomac had its chances. It looked as if the Panthers would tie the game early in the third quarter on a 24-yard touchdown catch by Trent Wilder.
Then kicker Hailee Strom botched the extra point, which eventually wound up being the difference.
But perhaps the biggest chance of the night came with 5:05 left in the fourth quarter. The Panthers were driving downfield with an opportunity to take the lead with time dwindling. That was until Jacobs threw a jump-ball intended for Wilder that ended up in the hands of Wildcats cornerback Trent Diaz.
“The energy I had, I was thinking, ‘I got to do this, got to do that, got to help the team,’” Diaz said.
Three plays later, Burress connected with Hamilton to help run out the clock.
Mountain View (8–4) visits North Stafford in the Northwest Region finals Friday.
“We’re playing for a regional championship,” coach Lou Sorrentino said. “And that’s something that can’t be taken away.”
Mountain View 0 14 0 0 — 14
Potomac 0 7 6 0 — 13
MV-Q. Gray 12-yard pass from E. Burress (D. Fraser kick)
Po-T. Dixon 7-yard run (H. Strom kick)
MV-G. Collins 20-yard pass from E. Burress (D. Fraser kick)
Po-T. Wilder 24-yard pass from L. Jacobs (kick failed)
First downs11 15
Rushing yardage27-17 40-208
Passing yardage160 66
Rushing: Potomac—Torrey Dixon 25-149, TD; A.J. Payton 6-56; Trent Wilder 2-10; Lorenzo Jacobs 6-2; Carlos Duncan 1-(-9). Mountain View—Gordon Collins 9-18; DaeSean Hamilton 7-17; Kirron Sleydin 2-(-1); Elijah Burress 9-(-17).
Passing: Potomac—Lorenzo Jacobs 5-13-1 66, TD. Mountain View—Elijah Burress 18-28-0 160, 2TD.
Receiving: Potomac—Trent Wilder 3-35, TD; Carlos Duncan 2-31. Mountain View—DaeSean Hamilton 8-77; Quinton Gray 6-52, TD; Gordon Collins 3-23, TD; Dillon Smith 1-9.
Jim Swing: 540/374-5440