West Aurora shocks Waubonsie Valley in 2 OT
West Aurora's Darryl Watkins came through in two pressure-packed situations that resulted in an upset of previously undefeated Waubonsie Valley.
The junior kicker sent the game into overtime with a personal-long 36-yard field goal and followed with a 29-yard game-winner in the second overtime, leading the Blackhawks to a 27-24 road win against the Warriors on their Homecoming Friday night.
The game-winner was set up when Waubonsie Valley fumbled in the second overtime with the score tied 24-24.
"To be honest, I was like, 'Just get a touchdown' because I don't want a chance to miss it," Watkins said of the game-winner. "But the coaches were saying, 'We're going to kick it, be ready.' When I kicked it, I knew it was going in."
After early-season struggles, West Aurora coach Nate Eimer stuck with Watkins.
"He went through a stretch this year were he struggled and I walked up to him and told him, 'You're my guy' " Eimer said. "He's been working so hard before and after practice. It couldn't have happened to a better kid."
The Blackhawks' (2-5, 2-3) totaled 18 first downs and punted only once as they utilized a ball-control offense that chewed up the clock.
Their opening drive went for 13 plays and 66 yards and took almost seven minutes off the clock.
Quarterback Johnathon Doyle converted a key fourth-and-21 play on a 28-yard reception to DaQuan Cross down to the Waubonsie Valley 2-yard line. Two plays later, Doyle scored on a quarterback keeper for a 7-0 lead.
"You've got to be able to stop them and make them punt," Waubonsie Valley coach Paul Murphy said. "We've got to do a better job on defense. That was the strength of our team early on and now it's not. We don't have anyone hurt, so we've got to watch the tape and figure out what's going on."
The Warriors (6-1, 4-1) needed just three plays to tie the game, marching 64 yards on runs of 24 and 32 yards by quarterback Zach Bennema and Tony Durns, respectively, followed by a 3-yard scoring run by Durns.
Following a second-quarter 21-yard field goal by Waubonsie Valley's Jordan Mellecker, West Aurora took a 14-10 lead with 3:45 left in the first half on a 9-yard scoring run by Cross.
Durns got the Warriors offense going on the opening play of the second half as he scampered 31 yards to the West Aurora 38. Four plays later, Bennema faked a handoff and cut through the right side of the line for 7 yards and a touchdown to put his team up 17-14.
Following a defensive stop, West Aurora took over at its own 26-yard line with 2:40 left in regulation. Doyle drove the Blackhawks 74 yards in 8 plays, including an 8-yard completion to Drake Spears that set up Watkins' 36-yard field goal.
"We're still 6-1 and we're still playing for a conference championship next week against Neuqua," Murphy said. "But we've got to get back to work. We've got to stop looking at the rankings and stop listening to all the hype."