RIVERSIDE — Jason Vlcek's 25-yard field goal with seven seconds remaining gave Foothill a 23-21 victory over third-seeded Riverside Poly in the opening round of the Division IV playoffs Friday at UC Riverside.
The victory allows the Knights to advance to the second round against Santa Margarita.
Foothill appeared headed for elimination. The Knights, who won their fourth consecutive, rallied from a 21-point deficit and did not lead until Vlcek's game-winning kick.
Riverside Poly scored 21 unanswered points in the second quarter. Fullback Rusty McNamara scored on a pair of touchdown runs for a 14-0 Bears lead.
Then, Jeff Davis recovered Randy Leaphart's fumbled interception return in the end zone to make it 21-0.
Foothill rallied. Quarterback Steve Wielandt threw a 19-yard touchdown pass to Augusto Ramos and fullback Linus Park scored on a one-yard run with 30 seconds remaining in the second quarter to cut the lead to 21-14.
Foothill pulled to within 21-20 when Wielandt found Joe Greco for a 10-yard touchdown pass with 11:45 remaining in the game.
Foothill used two personal-foul penalties on successive plays in the final drive to give the Knights a first down at the Riverside Poly 7-yard line with 12 seconds remaining. Vlcek then kicked his game-winning field goal.