Central Private Loses a Heartbreaker in Overtime

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One of the most successful seasons in Central Private football history came to an end this  past Friday night as the Oak Forest Yellowjackets were able to score on a two yard touchdown in overtime to take a 38-22 first round victory of the MPSA playoffs.
The Yellowjackets got started immediately taking the opening kickoff and driving 60-yards in 9 plays.  Jonathan Burrell finished the scoring drive with a 3-yard dive into the endzone with 7:59 remaining in the opening quarter.  Landon Curry missed the extra point and the score was Oak Forest 6 Central Private 0.  After being forced to punt, the Rebel defense made 2 big plays to give the offense excellent field position.  First linebacker Travis Richard sacked OF quarterback James Petterson and then senior Thomas Bourgeois recovered a fumble on the Yellow jacket 25-yard line.  The Rebels would take advantage of the turnover to go ahead in the ball game.


CP took advantage of their outstanding offensive line, “the put em away gang” of Matt Overlease, Cam Tate, Steven Whiddon, Andy Kinchen, and Travis Rose with 2 runs that led  into the end zone. Bobby Muse plowed into the endzone on a 1-yard blast after Richard carried tacklers to the one yard line.  Gage Wilkinson added the PAT and Central Private took a one point lead.(7-6).  Oak Forest would answer immediately.  Burrell would return the kickoff to the OF 46-yard line.  A 26-yard pass from Petterson to Philip Ingraffia had the Jackets in scoring territory.  Burrell would bang into the end zone from 3-yards out.  The 2-pt PAT would fail and OF led 12-7.  Senior Chase Metz intercepted a Burrell pass to give the Rebels possession of the football at their 45-yard line.  A 28-yard strike from Jason Young to Brit Myer set the Rebels up at the 23-yard line.  Muse would add his second touch down of the night 6 plays later.  He would rush in from 3 yards out.  The PAT was again and with 3:02 remaining until half time CP led 14-12.

Oak Forest quickly moved down the field.  The big play once again being a long pass reception by Ingraffia.  After taking 3 shots into the endzone with passes form the 6-yard line,  The Yellow Jackets attempted a 25-yard field goal.  The ball hit the cross bar and bounced over to give Oak Forest a 15-14 lead with :12 remaining.  The ensuing kick off was fumbled by the Rebels and recovered by the Jackets.  Travis Thornton would haul in a 35-yard pass from Burrell as time expired.  The PAT was good and OF took a 22-14 lead into the half.

The third quarter saw three Rebel drives end in turnovers.  The Rebel defense, however had stiffened and held the Jackets scoreless the entire second half.  Towards the end of the final quarter, Muse began to break long runs.  He followed a 19-yard run with a 17-yarder.  Young then scrambled for 14 more.  Facing a third and goal from the 16 yard line following a high snap, Young completed a 10-yard pass to Wilkinson.  The Rebels again turned to Muse who again delivered with a 6-yard jaunt into the end zone.  The Rebels would go for the 2pt PAT and Young took the ball into the end zone after a fake to Muse on a counter play.  Following a kick return to the 50-yard line,  the Jackets moved to the 21-yard line.  It was from here that Wilkinson blocked the 39-yard field goal attempt to send the game into overtime.  Oak Forest would stop the Rebels on 4-plays from the 10 yard line.  The game would end 1-play later as Burrell blasted into the end zone for the final score.


It is at times like these that we are reminded that sports both build and reveal character.  As the seniors that led CP to their first undisputed district championship in years felt  their high school careers  come to an end, it is important to remember all the successes that they have achieved.  It is also  important to  remember  the  efforts and the work put in.  This team led by Coaches Mike Longmire, Carl DiJohn, Brian Smith,  Jami Longmire, and Will Spencer will be remembered as CHAMPIONS.